Impressions of Jerusalem

President Duncan Brown welcomed a good turnout of members to Kirriemuir Probus Club’s latest meeting, his opening duty being to induct Paul Sixsmith as a new member of the club.

Duncan then introduced guest speaker the Rev. John Orr, minister of St Andrews Church, his first charge since becoming a Church of Scotland minister after a career in electronic engineering.

Mr Orr’s talk was an account of a visit he made to Jerusalem in June, 2011, as one of a group of students and prospective ministers from university on a holiday/learning opportunity. He also gave an insight into the background of current problems in the city and surrounding area.

Using a digital presentation of photographs taken at the time, he recounted visits made to the old town of Jerusalem, describing the atmosphere and multi-sensory experience of walking through the narrow and crowded cobbled streets and bazaars, where haggling for souvenirs and purchases was the norm.

The old city has Jewish, Muslim, Christian and Armenian quarters, a recipe for tension and conflict in such a small area. Visits were also made to The Sea of Galilee and to Hebron in the disputed West Bank where Jewish re-settlement has increased tension recently, with checkpoints and violent confrontations.

The Rev. Orr said his visit was a learning experience, seeing the problems at first hand, and had left him with more questions than answers.

A vote of thanks was proposed by Alastair Morrice, for a thought-provoking talk.

The next meeting of Kirriemuir Probus Club is on Wednesday, February 20, when the Rev. Ian Murray will talk on ‘The Mille Miglia’.