A Capital congregation has become the first in Scotland to donate a pipe banner to the Armed Forces after a dedication service on Sunday.
Canongate Kirk on the Royal Mile, which has strong links to service men and women and their families, decided to fundraise for two pipe banners – one to keep in the church, and the other to give to The Royal Regiment of Scotland.
It is anticipated that the Army’s banner, which bears the Regiment’s crest on one side and the Kirk’s on the other, will be worn by a piper of the First Battalion, The Royal Scots Borderers, wherever it may serve. The other identical banner will remain in the sanctuary to be used on special occasions such as Remembrance Sunday this coming weekend.
Minister Reverend Neil Gardner, who is also convener of the Church of Scotland’s Committee on Chaplains to HM Forces, said: “The congregation responded so generously to the suggestion that we commission a banner for the Royal Regiment of Scotland, we decided to get two and keep one as a mark of our role as Regimental Kirk”.
“As the parish church for Edinburgh Castle, Canongate Kirk has historic links with the First Battalion’s predecessors, The Royal Scots and The Kings Own Scottish Borderers. We insisted that any banner we presented to the Army should end up on active service with their successors”.
“Our own banner will hang on a wall of the church as a permanent reminder of our Armed Forces both past and present, except on occasions like Remembrance Sunday when it shall be carried by the piper playing for the Act of Remembrance during the service”.
As well as Edinburgh Castle, the Scottish Veterans’ Residence Whiteford House is in Canongate’s parish.
Congregations across Scotland will hold a two minute silence on Sunday to commemorate the sacrifices of members of the Armed Forces and of civilians in times of war.