Review of Community Christmas Concert
Last evening, around 90 people joined together as community within the Sanctuary of the Greyfriars Charteris Centre to enjoy some festive fun. For the first time since the former Kirk o'Field Church united with Greyfriars Kirk at the end of 2013, this space was filled with the sound of music provided by various local community groups.
The evening was organised and compered by Development Officer Dan Rous who also gave an update on the plans for the Centre and spoke about the inspiration behind the plans - the Very Reverend Archibald H. Charteris.
The Edinburgh City Salvation Army Band - based just a few hundred metres from the Centre - provided a seasonal soundtrack to get the evening underway, as well as accompanying the community carol singing and some more music in their own right.
Members of The Edinburgh Society of Recorder Players - who rehearse within the Centre on a regular basis - dispelled any uneducated myths of squeaky recorders by bringing some classic and Christmas music.
Members of The Edinburgh Life Church Gospel Choir - based on the other side of the Deaconess Gardens from the Centre - entertained and encouraged audience participation.
The Grassmarket Community Project - also part of the Greyfriars local outreach - showcased their members choir who won the audience over with their enthusiasm to get up and entertain despite their personal circumstances.
Rev Lezley Stewart, Associate Minister at Greyfriars - standing in for Rev Dr Richard Frazer who was unwell - shared an encouraging Christmas message of how we can find Jesus in the most unexpected places
And the gathered audience sung as one for 4 Christmas Carols. You can watch them singing one verse of the last carol, Hark the Herald Angels sing, over on our Facebook page through this link.
You can see a few photos from the evening in the slideshow below.
Finally, a prayer was offered by the ever supportive great great nephew of the Very Revd Charteris, Lt Col John Charteris MBE MC, who also brought along his wife and grandson. This was believed to be the first time that a member of the Charteris family in direct line from Archibald had attended any kind of service within the originally named Charteris Memorial Church.
Following the entertainment, the audience were treated to some festive refreshments as well as the chance to view development plans for the Centre, and some exhibitions from CrossReach's Heart for Art group, CoCo Counselling, the Jericho Benedictine Society and the Grassmarket Community Project.
This festive concert was a positive step forward in the life and development of the Centre, and gave food for thought and encouragement for the times ahead. Same time next year?!