Scott Hamilton

Scott HamilitonOn Mondays we want to introduce you to some of the individuals who have been supported by the Bonar Trust since it started.  Hopefully this will give an insight into the importance of the trust and how the money supports gospel work across Scotland.

Scott Hamilton lives in Edinburgh and was supported by the Bonar Trust from 2013-15.

Tell us a little about yourself

I’m a staff-worker with UCCF working closely with Christian Unions in Edinburgh. My role is working closely alongside the committees to help them make decisions as they CU’s run events across the campus giving students the opportunity to hear and respond to the good news of Jesus. I write Bible studies for groups that meet in halls of residence and I help maintain good relationships with church leaders across the city of Edinburgh.

What ministry training are you undertaking/did you undertake?

I studied part time at Cornhill Scotland in Glasgow whilst working as an apprentice for Chalmers Church in Edinburgh.

What lead you into training for gospel ministry?

Two things were really instrumental. I had a real desire growing within me to pursue a life of gospel ministry and there were others much older, wiser and with much more experience who were encouraging me to undergo training and development. I think both are crucial for me.

How did/does the support of the Bonar Trust help you in your training for gospel ministry?

The Bonar trust graciously enabled me to train at Cornhill, pay travel expenses and also pay general living costs. Without God working through the Bonar trust I would never have been in privileged position of seeing Him working in the lives of individuals across Edinburgh or in my own life to shape me for gospel ministry.

If you have completed you training, what do you do now?

I’m still enjoying training for gospel ministry as I share the gospel with students across the city of Edinburgh

Give one great challenge and one great joy of working in gospel ministry.

I remember one girl who studied music at university feeling conflicted that her joy was also her study. I have from time to time felt that same dryness with God and the Bible. It’s so vital for me to regularly spend time in God’s Word for my own personal growth and nourishment. I have also seen young men and women give their lives to Jesus and then go on to share the gospel with others. It’s a real joy to see these students so overwhelmed by the truth of the gospel that they can’t help but share it with others. Witnessing this has been a real joy.

If you would like to give to the work for the Bonar Trust and support more individuals like Scott, you can find all the information here.

John Torrens

On Mondays we want to introduce you to some of the individuals who have been supported by the Bonar Trust since it started.  Hopefully this will give an insight into the importance of the trust and how the money supports gospel work across Scotland.

John Torrens lives in Northern Ireland and was supported by the Bonar Trust from 2010-12.

Tell us a little about yourself

Originally from Northern Ireland my wife, Mel and I returned to Belfast from Scotland so that I could start ministry training with the Presbyterian Church in Ireland. We are currently living in Belfast which is great as it enables us to regularly attend Ravenhill where we watch Ulster play rugby.

What ministry training are you undertaking/did you undertake?

After training at St Catherine’s Argyle on their Ministry Associate Programme I worked for Sandyford Henderson Church, Glasgow for two years. Since then I have been training as a minister in Union College, Belfast with the Presbyterian Church in Ireland. I have completed two years of theological study with a further year to go and I am the assistant minister at Richhill Presbyterian.

What lead you into training for gospel ministry?

I was encouraged to pursue ministry training whilst on the UCCF Relay Programme. I applied to St Catherine’s Argyle Ministry Associate Programme where I tested my gifts to see if I was suitable for a life in full-time ministry and I followed the instruction of the Kirk Session to continue my training elsewhere.

How did/does the support of the Bonar Trust help you in your training for gospel ministry?

The Bonar Trust enabled me to train at St Catherine’s Argyle and to attend Cornhill Training Course, Glasgow. Without the support of the Trust I would not have been able to do either of these things.

If you have completed your training, what do you do now?

I have yet to complete my training as an ordained minister with the Presbyterian Church in Ireland. I am currently finishing my theology degree whilst working as an assistant minister at Richhill Presbyterian Church.

Give one great challenge and one great joy of working in gospel ministry.

The greatest challenge I am currently facing is finding the time to do all the things that I feel are important. Whether that is adequate sermon preparation, personal reading, discipleship or evangelism it is hard to sufficiently complete all these endeavour’s every week. However a great joy is having the time to study God’s Word, to teach His people, to watch the Spirits influence in people’s lives grow and see people come to know and love the Lord Jesus more.

If you would like to give to the work for the Bonar Trust and support more individuals like John, you can find all the information here.

Craig Anderson

Craig AndersonOn Mondays we want to introduce you to some of the individuals who have been supported by the Bonar Trust since it started.  Hopefully this will give an insight into the importance of the trust and how the money supports gospel work across Scotland.

Craig Anderson lives in Dundee and was supported by the Bonar Trust from 2012-14.

Tell us a little about yourself

I grew up in Northumberland to Scottish parents and moved up to Scotland myself in 2008 for university. I now live in Dundee with my wife Amy and our daughter Tabitha.

What ministry training are you undertaking/did you undertake?

I undertook the Ministry Associate Program at St Catherine’s Argyle/Chalmers Church in 2012-2014. As part of this I also studied part time at Cornhill Scotland. I am currently a UCCF Staff Worker, which I also include as ministry training.

What lead you into training for gospel ministry?

There were a few factors. One was my minister David Robertson, I was mentored by him as a student. Another factor was the Words For Life Conference (originally Biblical Evangelism Conference). Here this gave me the opportunity to give an evangelistic talk that I had written and also find out more what is involved in Christian ministry. The third factor was   meeting Robin Sydserff. I first met him when he spoke at the biblical evangelism conference and a year later he was speaking at the Dundee CU weekend away and events week when I was CU president at the time. Through talking with him, David and both of them opening their homes many times to myself and Amy I was led to seriously consider training for gospel ministry and I’m so thankful for the time these men and their wives gave us and for investing in us.

How did/does the support of the Bonar Trust help you in your training for gospel ministry?

The Bonar Trust helped support me financially while I was undertaking the ministry associate program. They also indirectly helped support me by causing me to meet other men and women who were also undertaking training in gospel ministry who have now become great friends in ministry.

If you have completed you training, what do you do now?

After the ministry associate program I went to work as a Staff Worker with UCCF in Dundee. Here I work with the Christian Unions in Dundee University and Abertay University. Last year I had the privilege of organising the words for life conference, something which was special for me considering how much of an impact it had and continues to have on my life and ministry. In my work as a CU Staff Worker I help encourage and equip the Christian Unions, train student leaders and disciple Relay Workers (10 month graduate discipleship program with UCCF). However this is my last year with UCCF and from September I will be studying at ETS while God-willing working alongside at my local church as I train to be a minister in the Free Church of Scotland.

Give one great challenge and one great joy of working in gospel ministry.

One great challenge in ministry I find is resting well. It is easy to work and work and work at something you really love and enjoy. But it can sometimes be difficult to also rest and enjoy that to the glory of God.

One great joy I have of working in gospel ministry is the opportunity I have to invest heavily in Relay Workers, CU Presidents and Vice-Presidents and hallgroup leaders. It is a real pleasure to serve these students as older Christians have served me by sharing with them not only the gospel but also my life and to teach them how to read the bible well and how to write and lead bible studies well so that they can go onto to serve the local church better.

If you would like to give to the work for the Bonar Trust and support more individuals like Craig, you can find all the information here.

Our Vision

The Bonar Trust passionately believes that Scotland needs more gospel workers who will share the good news of Jesus Christ. The primary purpose of the Trust is to provide funding for the ministry training of these workers.
Apprenticeships and Church Leader in Training positions are, we believe, the key components in creating a pathway to ministry – training grounded in the local church in partnership with external training providers like Cornhill Scotland and Edinburgh Theological Seminary.  Since its launch the Bonar Trust has funded more than 20 apprentices training in Edinburgh, Glasgow, St Andrew’s, Stirling, Dundee and the Highlands.
While it is encouraging to see Apprenticeship and Church Leader in Training Programmes established in churches, numbers small and much more work needs to done. As we look to expand the work, the Trust’s financial resources are now the limiting factor.  If you would like to consider supporting the work of the Trust financially you can find out more here.  Over the next couple of months we will be profiling some of the individuals we have supported and the ways they have benefited from the Trust.