We in the Kirk of Calder seek with God's help to encourage and give opportunity to all to grow together in faith and service.
kirkofcalder   www.kirkofcalder.com
 Parish Profile
Inside This Site
Stained Glass Windows
War Memorials
The Kirk Story
The Calder Witches
Music in the Kirk
Church Organisations
Old Maps
Publications & Videos
Accounts & Donations
Internet Wedding
Privacy & Data Protect
Parish Profile

 Parish Profile 

                                                 Issue 02b


Kirk of Calder Parish Church

Mid Calder, West Lothian



Parish Profile
March 2024




    Scottish Charity No SCO13461


"With God’s help to encourage and give opportunity
to all to grow together in faith and service".









History of the Charge                                                                    
Community Profile                            
Worship Life                     
Pastoral Care                 
Ecumenical Context                                                                       
World Church                                                                                 
Christian Education                                                                       
Stewardship and Finance    
Church, Manse and Halls                                                              
Web Links                                                                      

Page 3
Page 4
Page 6
Page 6
Page 7
Page 7
Page 8
Page 8
Page 9
Page 10
Page 11
Page 13












The charge of Kirk of Calder became vacant on 1st September 2021, when the Rev John Povey retired after a long ministry. Since then, the charge has maintained weekly and other services, through a part-time locum minister and regular pulpit supply.  

The demission
of its minister has seen elders and congregation of Kirk of Calder willingly coming forward to take up posts and perform tasks to maintain the life of the church.  Though enjoying the variety of approach to spiritual life provided by locum and pulpit supply ministers, the congregation is looking forward to the more intimate fellowship that will be built with their own full-time minister. Kirk of Calder is now a reviewable charge in the Edinburgh and West Lothian Presbytery Mission Plan.






Some of the questions raised from the Sunday Club for our prospective new Minister -


What made you want to become a minister? 


If you were given the job what would you bring to the Church? 


What qualifications do you have? 


Would you like to do a children's talk on Sunday? 


What ideas do you have for a children's talk on Sunday? 


Why do you want to be the Minister of Kirk of Calder?

Are you up to this Challenge?

 History of the Charge

Worship has been recorded as taking place on the Kirk of Calder site since 1150. The church building dates from 1541 when it was rebuilt. It was extended in 1863 and refurbished in 1991.  In its 500-year history, Kirk of Calder has called just 22 ministers.

n 1556, John Knox preached many times at Kirk of Calder. The first reformed celebration of the Lord's Supper performed by Knox in the nearby Calder House, is recorded in a painting (NG323) by Sir David Wilkie. Kirk of Calder’s second minister assisted Knox in the drawing up of the Scots Confession of Faith in 1560.

Kirk of Calder is a grade-A listed building standing within an historic graveyard and houses the family crypt of the Torphichen family. Kirk of Calder also boasts two sets of magnificent stained-glass windows gifted by James ‘Paraffin’ Young. It is a building with a long Presbyterian tradition and history. The Church of Scotland commissioners, visiting West Lothian Presbytery in 2019, stated that Kirk of Calder is 'the jewel' in West Lothian’s crown.


Kirk of Calder has always striven to be an inclusive and welcoming church, even if those attending sometimes only do so for a day. Kirk of Calder has decided to depart from historic and current practice, in order to permit the ordination, induction or appointment of a minister who is in a civil partnership or same sex marriage.

Kirk of Calder and its minister play an active part in the community life of the parish. Our hall, meeting room  and the Kirk are used by many groups. Special events and services are held throughout the year, along with tours of the church. It has a thriving Guild.

Kirk of Calder is actively bringing the five marks of mission into the minds of the congregation and its worship focus. The congregation is encouraged to invite family, friends and neighbours to join in the fellowship of weekly and special services, and other church activities or events.  



Kirk of Calder provides chaplaincy to the local school and housing with care complex and the church is open for community events and visitors.  Weekly fellowship cafes run every Tuesday and Sunday and the congregation supports local food bank initiatives. Children’s summer club is run in the final week of the summer vacation and end of term services are held for the local primary school. West Lothian Council uses Kirk of Calder for special services.

Average weekly attendance at worship is 60. This figure generally increases at baptisms and special services.

Kirk of Calder aims to make this church the local and accessible place of worship for Mid Calder and the wilder community. The mission of Kirk of Calder is to adjust the balance of its congregational demographic by attracting the younger generation through reaching out into these expanding housing developments.

Kirk of Calder has a communion roll of 366 members and is biased towards female members by a ratio of 3:1. Members are drawn from the parish and from across Livingston and are served by 28 elders with some elders serving more than one district. A Unitary constitution was adopted in 2020. The key office bearers are appointed by Kirk Session. These posts are currently biased towards male elders, by a ratio of 2:1.


There are currently 28 members on the Kirk Session with 12 male elders and 16 female elders.

There are subcommittees for Property, Stewardship and the Sunday Club.

The buildings are well-maintained, and the manse is currently being refurbished, prior to a new minister taking up the post.

The Presbytery Mission Plan provides Kirk of Calder with one full-time post of Minister The plan envisages Kirk of Calder working in a parish grouping with two other Livingston churches - Livingston Old Parish Church and Livingston United Ecumenical Church.  Between them, these churches will have three full-time ministers plus one-and-a-half ministry development posts working across the parish grouping, serving a population of over 70,000. The Kirk of Calder minister is expected to spend a proportion of their time working with the ministry development support posts to extend and develop mission in Livingston. Parish boundaries will become notional, with each church retaining its own character and autonomy.  Kirk of Calder has members drawn from these other parishes; hence this grouping is seen as an appropriate way to grow mission in Livingston. Once again,  Kirk of Calder is in the vanguard of change in the Church of Scotland.



Community Profile

Kirk of Calder Parish Church is situated within the conservation village of Mid Calder in the county of West Lothian .  The parish also includes  the village of Pumpherston which is situated to the North East of Mid Calder.

Being between Edinburgh and Glasgow we have excellent links to both the East and West coast.  Just over a mile from Mid Calder lies a large shopping centre with a designer outlet.  In Mid Calder we are served by a Primary School with attached Nursery,  a Housing  with Care Complex Chemist,  Bowling Green,  Community Centre,  Several shops/Takeaways, Gastro Pubs and Restaurants.

The church has strong links within the community and works together with both the Community Council and the Mid Calder Gala Committee. The Minister would be chaplain to Mid Calder Primary School & Pumpherston and Uphall Station Community Primary School and part of a chaplaincy team at West Calder High School. 

Worship Life

Worship in Kirk of Calder takes place on Sunday at 10.30am  

Additional services take place throughout the year including:


Good Friday, evening service.


Remembrance Day service.


November service is held to commemorate loved ones who have passed.


A community family service and torchlight procession in December


Watchnight Service on Christmas Eve.

Services follow a traditional pattern in a warm and welcoming setting.  Communion is held four times a year with an additional family communion after the service on Easter Sunday.

In the past five years there have been 40 baptisms.   The congregation always enjoys baptismal services and is happy to greet new faces during this family service.

The local primary school uses the church for end of term services when parents, carers, and wider family members also attend.

Worship is planned and led by the minister.  During the service bible passages are read by members of the congregation or elders.  The offering is collected by the duty team.  A printed order of service with intimations is produced each week and distributed by the welcome team.  Due to the layout of the building data projection is not used.

or Music we have


A Conacher organ of 1888






CH4 is mainly used, also Junior Praise


Choir or soloists


Concerts in the church, various musical styles


Singalongs in the Church hall.

Pastoral Care

We have volunteers from our congregation who visit our frailer members and community.  One of the things introduced, which has been really successful  is a “Remembrance Flower Festival”.  This has been held for many years and has proved to be a very meaningful event for many members and people of Mid Calder and Pumpherston. A new minister and closer ties with our partner churches could help us have a more cohesive approach to this important work.

Should any of our members wish a visit from our minister, their elder or pastoral care support this can be arranged.

Services are held on a regular basis in the Cunnigar House Housing  with Care Complex where there are 20 flats, Church magazines are handed into every flat.

We would like to reinstate monthly midweek services in Uphall and Pumpherston Community Primary School.

Every November we hold a special service in the Church for those who have lost a loved one in the past year.  This is a short 30-minute service followed by tea and biscuits. 

Elders and other church members from time to time participate in church services providing music accompaniment and through readings on a Sunday.  They are also responsible for delivering to all members the church magazine which is published  four times a year.

Over the past 5 years we have had 184 funerals, 14 weddings and 40 baptisms both congregational and parish. We have a Cradle Roll and follow up all baptised children with a card every birthday up to the age of four.

Ecumenical Context

The basis of reviewable charge ensures that we contribute to the building up the Parish Grouping of Livingston Old Parish and Livingston United Parish churches. This is regarded by all members of Kirk of Calder as an exciting opportunity.

The church has, through its work with the Calder Witch Hunt Project, hosted tours for children from different or no faith backgrounds.

World Church

For many years Kirk of Calder has been practically and prayerfully supportive of Christian Aid. Monies raised have included donations made to a Kenyan school for orphans and disadvantaged children. Our Guild continues to raise funds for many UK- based and overseas Charities, as we have done for many years

We are a committed fair trade church recognising a pragmatic way to help those across the world.

Kirk of Calder undertook a three-year project to raise £85,000 to assist the Vine Trust build "The Village of Hope" in Tanzania which ended in 2017. The church invited other churches and organisations to participate.

Since the start of the war in Ukraine, on 24 Feb 22, the Kirk of Calder has welcomed Ukrainian families and currently continues to advertise church events on social media sites frequented by Ukrainians.  There has been some attendance at the church by Ukrainian families and a Ukrainian child has participated in our Summer Club as well as our last two Nativities. Singers, Vika Yasynska and Olga Prokopenko, have entertained at church events, as has concert cellist, Kateryna Tunina. Vika has also been a guest speaker at our Guild meetings.  For those Ukrainian families or individuals attending our services we provide copies of the bible in Ukrainian. 


Christian Education
In the last two years there has been major success in the Christian Education of our children through the Sunday Club. The Sunday Club comprises 8 children aged 4 to 11 and is augmented periodically by two teenagers who provide supervision and form part of the 8-strong team that manages the club. Currently, the Sunday Club is the sole youth group for the Kirk of Calder and the aim has been to lay solid foundations for it before progressing other youth groups.  It is hoped that as we continue to grow the Sunday Club we will see the emergence of a separate youth group for older children, especially as those in the Sunday Club become teenagers. 

We are fortunate that not only is the Sunday Club managed by a group of Elders, amongst them we have 3 ex-teachers one of whom specialised in Religious Education. Therefore, the club is meticulous, imaginative and professional in the Christian education that it provides to the children. Club activities are tied tightly to weekly sermons and the messages that they convey as well as to Christian events, beliefs and values.  Fun and respect are at the forefront of the club’s undertakings so that children are made to feel welcome, safe and valued from the start. The club is set in the nearby Glenalmond Hall but on Sunday the children firstly gather in the church for the children’s address before being led to the hall.  In addition to the activities there, the children take part in day trips, summer clubs and the church fairs.  They also perform from time to time, and our recent Nativity received widespread praise for the quality of the narrations and songs from the children.  We also have children who enjoy Highland Dancing and have performed in care complexes and Christmas Fairs on behalf of the church and as part of its community engagement.



We keenly await the arrival of a new Minister to deepen our Christian insight and help provide some  formal Christian Education for adults. We do have a busy social programme and some elements of this, provide for Christian reflection, particularly in our Guild meetings and the moral and philosophical topics they embrace.


In relation to youth work other than our Sunday Club, we regularly invite local schools to the Kirk of Calder for pupils to learn about the church’s rich history.  The church’s involvement in the Calder Witch Trials is a big draw for pupils.  Also of interest to them is our week-long Summer Club.  Our inaugural club in 2023 saw a full house of 20 attendees, the majority from local primaries.  Similarly, we had over 20 local children take part in our most recent Nativity. 



Stewardship and Finance

Our Treasurer updates Kirk Session both digitally and in person, each month on our church finances. Updates are also made to our congregation through our Church magazine, as required in Sunday intimations and at our Annual General Meeting.


Our accounts are available on the church website Accounts & Donations


Accounts link Kirk 2023 accounts.


Our accounts, each year since Covid have been in surplus.


2023 saw that trend continue     

  2023 - Total Income £93,881, Total  Expenditure £82,371 - Surplus £11,510

We have been thankful to be able to have access to the National Stewardship Campaign and in the last year have focussed on both Enabling Generosity and Additional Incomes Streams. Our Stewardship Leader has led this with the support of our Kirk Session. At our Sunday service, we have a specific time for our offerings and we give thanks for them in prayer.

FWO envelopes, standing order and gift aid forms are available and highlighted at church, through the magazine and on the website. Annual letters are sent to members of the congregation thanking them for their offerings. The different methods of making offerings are covered and, for those who are able, asked to consider an annual increase.


Our 2023 offerings are up 8%.


66% of our income is generated through FWO, standing order and gift Aid

Hall lettings have been promoted and increased which has been beneficial both from a financial standpoint and for our mission work within our local community. In May 2022, a three year ReGen 2025 Campaign was launched to raise funds for fabric projects in the church to December 2023 this has raised £31,000. We have explored, and set up, different methods of giving, including digital and 'Just Giving' options.

The Giving to Grow figure for 2024 is £49,266 and the Vacancy Allowance is £11,196.




The Edinburgh and West Lothian Presbytery Mission Plan provides one-and-a-half ministry- development posts, working across the parish grouping. The Kirk of Calder post is expected to spend part of its time working with the ministry-development support posts, to extend and develop mission in Livingston.  

·    The church officer opens and maintains the church, changes the pulpit falls and communion table-cloths, as services require, and prepares the communion elements. The church officer carries in the bible at the start of the service and out at the end. He or she also cleans the church and the halls, supported by members of the congregation. The officer also coordinates Funeral and Wedding church bookings.

There are currently three posts that are paid by Kirk of Calder - Organist, Church Officer and Church Cleaner. The Kirk Session fills all the other posts on a voluntary basis.









Church, Manse and Halls

               The Kirk                            The Malt Barn                 The Glenalmond Hall

The Kirk

A Church has been on the site since the 12th century.  The present church dates from 1541, with an extension added in the 1860. It is category A listed.

Address Main Street, Mid Calder, West Lothian, Scotland, EH53 0AN,

The Malt Barn

The Malt Barn is within the Kirk graveyard and has a small meeting room. It is Category B listed. It is used for small meetings and has a wheelchair accessible toilet and baby changing facilities.

The Glenalmond Hall

150 metres North of the church on Main St. It is used for various Church organisations and is available for hire. It is category B listed. It has its own car park.

The property provides a hall plus toilets, kitchen and, on the first floor, a small office and store. It has a Wheelchair Accessible Toilet and baby changing facilities. 



Activities held there include

bullet Teas and Coffee after every Church Service;
bullet A Drop in Cafe every Tuesday morning; 
bullet A venue for the Kirk Session to meet;
bullet Where the Sunday Club meets on a Sunday
bullet A venue for various social Events
bullet A hall available to rent.

The Manse















The manse is a four bedroom detached villa situated 0.7 miles from the Kirk. It has on the ground floor a lounge that runs from the front to the back of the house, a kitchen, a dining room, an office and a cloakroom & toilet, Three of the four bedrooms upstairs have built in wardrobes, and one has an ensuite shower room, there is a family bathroom upstairs with a bath with a shower. It has double glazing, a garage and a fairly large garden to the side and rear.

The Property team is nearing the end of a £30,000 refurbishment of the manse in the anticipation of the appointment of a new Minister.

This includes providing a refurbished family bathroom, refurbished master ensuite shower room, refitted cloakroom, a new fitted kitchen: new doors; new boiler and radiators: new floor coverings and redecoration.


















Web Links

Our Website www.kirkofcalder.com

The Kirk's Facebook Page.

Our Profile on the Church of Scotland Website.

Census information on Mid Calder on the Church of Scotland Website. https://cos.churchofscotland.org.uk/church-finder/data/statistics/parish-profiles/020148.pdf

If you click the picture you can see a Video Drone Fly Past of the Church lasting 38 seconds. (Please note it takes a little while to load or it will buffer so its best to let it load fully first before fully playing!).


Our "Friends of Kirk of Calder" tours co-ordinator John Jamieson has prepared a 14 minute long Virtual Tour of the Kirk. Click the image or view here.

Our Local Council https://www.westlothian.gov.uk/


Any questions or for more information contact:

Kenneth Wilson (Session Clerk) coinneach239232@gmail.com 07515 944359.

To apply contact:-  

Formal applications, with CV, to the Clerk to the Nominating Committee, Mrs. Jan Ingram - janingram@icloud.com



Kirk of Calder, Main St, Mid Calder, West Lothian, Scotland, EH53 0AN.


Back to top of page




Kirk of Calder Parish (Church of Scotland) is registered Scottish Charity No SCO13461

Zoom Web Designs  "are pleased to manage and maintain this website and its domain, as a contribution to the Church's work."