A minister has bid farewell to the church he has preached in for over 20 years.
Reverend Ian Black (62) officially retired from his role at Grangemouth’s Zetland Parish Church at a special thanksgiving service in his honour last Sunday.
When Glasgow-born Mr Black arrived in town in 1991 he was taking up the post of minister at a church in Ronaldshay Cresent which had just been formed from the union of Grange Parish Church and Grangemouth Old Parish Church.
He said: “It took a bit of work, but the people were always very welcoming and positive towards me and committed to the new church.
“It became more than a job, it was a way of life. You have the great privilege of being involved in people’s lives at times of great happiness and great sadness.
“It’s very humbling to be dealing with people in all aspects of their lives like this.”
Mr Black, wife Agnes and their family initially thought they would stay in Grangemouth for about 10 years to allow their children to complete secondary school.
“Everything was going so well and we were so happy we just stayed,” he said.
“A minister could not function without the dedication of members of the congregation and the church office bearers.
“It’s been a very happy 22 years.”
Mr Black said the church would now follow the usual procedures to fill the vacancy his retirement created.
With his weekends his own again, he and his wife plan to take the chance to travel down to England more often to see their family and grandson.