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Chamber and committees

Meeting date: Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Meeting of the Parliament 10 January 2017

Agenda: Time for Reflection, Topical Question Time, Protection and Promotion of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (European Union), Decision Time, Type 1 Diabetes


Contents


Time for Reflection

Good afternoon. Our first item of business is time for reflection, and our leader today is the Rev David Logan, who is minister of Caerlaverock and Dumfries St Mary’s-Greyfriars’ churches.

The Rev David Logan (Caerlaverock and Dumfries St Mary’s-Greyfriars’ Churches)

Presiding Officer, members, only 10 days have elapsed since we were all bringing in the new year. It is a time for Scots the world over to take stock and look back on the year that has been and the year that lies before them, which is full of promise. It is also the time when many of us make new year resolutions. You know the type of things—to run a marathon, to lose half your body weight in a month or to give up smoking. Whatever promises we make in front of others are really promises that we make to ourselves. Sadly, most of those promises will turn to dust as the year moves on and we find that somehow we do not have the will or the willpower to make them come true.

Many of you in this chamber will have made similar personal resolutions and, like most people, you will find them hard to achieve. However, there is one resolution that I would like you to consider, and that is to do an act of kindness to somebody every day. I am not talking about political imperative or party requirements; I am talking about taking individual actions that will benefit another without any promise of thanks or recognition. As a minister, I often witness selfless acts by others and it always warms my heart when I see such open-heartedness in action, whether that is doing shopping for somebody or perhaps paying for a cup of coffee for someone who cannot afford even such a basic treat.

I belong to the Order of St John, which is a charitable organisation that is dedicated to the encouragement and promotion of all work of humanity and charity for the relief of persons in sickness, distress, suffering or danger. It does that without distinction of race, class or creed. Those principles should be the watchwords of how we Scots treat each other and those who visit our country.

As a Christian, I strive to follow the teachings of Christ about loving my neighbour, but you do not need to be the follower of any faith to treat all with dignity, respect and charity. I would ask each one of you in the chamber to consider, if you will, making that your new year resolution for 2017. I think that you might find that easier to keep than most resolutions.

Happy new year, and all the best for this session of Parliament.