St Ninian’s Church

Glencairn & Moniaive Parish Church is a linked charge with Dunscore Parish Church and is within the Presbytery of Dumfries and Kirkcudbright.

The parish of Glencairn & Moniaive is located at the northern end of the scenic Cairn Valley in mid-Nithsdale, which is part of the Dumfries & Galloway region of South West Scotland.

The community is centred around the village of Moniaive.

We aim to play an active part in the community we serve, reaching out with the love and joy of Jesus Christ.

Our vision is ‘To convince all people of God’s love for them’.

On 19th January 2020, the Revd Mark R S Smith was duly elected as our new Minister. Read more about this on our ‘News’ page. Over the past year of Vacancy, the support and guidance of our Interim Moderator, The Revd J Stuart Mill, and all of our visiting Ministers  has been greatly appreciated by the congregation. There will be an opportunity to thank them all properly at a future date.

Opening of Church Buildings

Update on the Covid-19 Pandemic (Coronavirus) Lockdown:

The Church buildings will not be fully open to the public for a while yet as the stringent demands of the relevant Risk Assessments as required by the Scottish Government and the Church of Scotland will take time to implement.

The Board and Kirk Session are working hard to comply with all the standards of spacing and hygiene and hope to be ready as ‘Easing’ progresses. Watch this space.

In the meantime, contact the Minister or the Session Clerk, Nan Tait.  Their numbers are on the ‘Contact’ page.

Read about the Kirk’s latest response and update on the reopening of churches here.

Ongoing cancellation or changes to our Church activities are noted on the following pages.  Other dates shown may have to be altered.


Advent Message from our Minister

Sunday 29 November:

Advent is the four Sundays before Christmas. It usually gets swallowed up in Black Friday, Christmas muzak in the supermarkets and Crème Eggs on the shelves.

Advent means ‘coming’ and we use it to remind us that Jesus came (as a baby) into the world, comes (through the Holy Spirit) into our lives today, and will come again as King on the Last Day.

Each Sunday of Advent carries an underlying theme – Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love – and our worship reflects this. During the count-up we usually light four candles (Two Ronnies fans smirk here) on our Advent Wreath to symbolise these themes and focus our thoughts so that we are ready to really celebrate Christmas and all that it means!

We will be doing a lot of different things together – greeting our friends in Lubuto, making Christingles, singing the traditional Carols, enjoying a Messy Nativity, checking our Advent Calendars, lighting candles, ringing bells, showing our presents, putting lights in our windows!

I would like to thank all those who are working so hard to ensure that Advent is special for us this year – most of the usual practicalities are more complicated than usual and there has been lots of imagination involved in planning our services and events over the Advent and Christmas period.

Please join us as you are able – the list of services and events is on this website – and I pray that what is offered will help enrich your own celebrations in these strange times.

God Bless & elbow bumps,


Our Minister’s other notes for this week can be read in the Church Family Notices by clicking here.

See the Diary on the What’s On  page of this website for details of our forthcoming services.


With the restrictions on the use of our buildings we mainly use the internet:

Zoom video-conferencing for our main Sunday Worship (also by telephone!) YouTube for recordings of the Sunday Worship and other resources            Facebook posts for ongoing encouragement and information                                Email for general contact and updates

– but we are aware that some of you are not connected to such things.

PRAYER & REFLECTION – Usually 3pm Second Sundays in the month, but see the Diary for extra dates in Advent.

Quiet time in church (with face-masks, social distancing, no singing) for half  an     hour. A chance to simply meet with God in a place of Prayer and Worship.

TOGETHER AT HOME – 7pm Sunday & Thursday

Join in prayer, thought and reflection.  use the weekly prayer and theme from the CFNs. Light a candle  Look at pictures of friends/family/congregation.  Listen to restful music.  As we pray in the name of Jesus the Holy Spirit will unite us across the distancing.

Another message from our Minister …

October 2020

Greetings from Wallaceton.

 It is now 6 months since I was inducted (via Skype) as your Minister – unique at the time!

We still find ourselves in strange times … and those times are set to continue for a good while yet!

CoVID has cut across ‘normal’ life in ways we could not have imagined when I accepted the call to be your Minister here in the Cairn Valley! 2020 will certainly be a year to remember.

 As churches we have had to try new things! Zoom, YouTube, Facebook, etc have been adopted as tools for sharing the Good News about Jesus – very different from the usual Church of Scotland format for worship and prayer. I’ve had to learn new skills – computers are not really my thing. Thanks to those from our congregations who have worked hard behind the scenes to get us online so effectively, and our musicians who have adapted so ably to the demands of ‘live’ performance.

Thanks also to the Elders who have maintained contact and care for God’s flock and neighbours and the wider community. Thanks to all who have helped neighbours, delivered groceries, cooked meals, phoned the lonely, Skyped family, waved at passers-by, and generally shown the best of humanity.

We approach a time of Remembrance – All Saints Day, Bonfire Night, Remembrance Sunday, Armistice Day. Many of us have lost loved ones this year but been unable to mark their passing and celebrate the lives of those we love but see no longer. We hope to have the church open for quiet remembrance on the afternoon of Sunday 1st November. We will remember Jesus as we celebrate Holy Communion together via Zoom on Thursday 5th November. We will gather, young and old alike in Remembrance and commit ourselves to seeking peace in the world. Watch for details of exact times and arrangements nearer the time as these events may be affected by any changes in CoVID regulations.

We continue to meet via Zoom every Sunday morning (10.30am) and open our doors for Prayer and Reflection once a month at 3pm (2nd Sunday in Moniaive, 4th Sunday in Dunscore). I hope to be able to expand this during Advent as we prepare for Christmas – again watch for details. Unfortunately, with the latest increase in restrictions, it looks unlikely that we will be physically together for our Christmas celebrations! This will be especially hard for those not connected to the internet – please bear these folk in mind as winter draws in.

As Autumn progresses enjoy the changing colours, richer sunlight, and the fruits.

God Bless & elbow bumps,

Mark RS Smith