Ministers need HIV training says Church of Scotland group

By agency reporter
April 29, 2009

A Church of Scotland group wants the Kirk to include HIV education as part of its training for candidates entering the ministry.

The HIV/AIDS Project report to the General Assembly calls for a task group to work with the Ministries Council to explore ways in which HIV and Aids education could be offered as part of preacher training programmes.

By equipping parish leaders at local, regional and national level, it says congregations could better understand the issues around HIV in Scotland and the church would be enabled to be more effective in care and support.

Project officials say an HIV-competent church would staunch the spread of the disease, improve the lives of those living with and affected by it and ultimately restore hope and dignity.

The report claims that if there is no HIV leadership amongst Kirk leaders, there is no leadership on HIV within the Church of Scotland as a whole.

If successful, the training would then be made available to the whole church.

Last year, the outgoing Moderator, the Rev David Lunan, launched the 'Moderator’s Challenge' which asked local presbyteries to raise £10,000 to help with the church’s work in this area.

The HIV/AIDS Project has also provided special worship materials for churches across Scotland in a bid to raise awareness and stimulate action.

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