Holy Trinity Scottish Episcopal Church, Stirling

Rev. Christopher Jarman, B.A. (1994-2003)

Rev. Kit Jarman

During Fr McIntyre's 5-month sick leave, his priestly duties were diligently attended to by two retired priests: Rev. Duncan Sladden, assisted by Rev. Alan Gray. The new Rector was Rev. Christopher (Kit) Jarman, previously a Chaplain with the Royal Marines.

Rev Jarman had undergone a gruelling six-month commando course to join the Royal Marines in 1973 and spent the next 20 years serving with the crack troops before leaving to join the Scottish Episcopal Church.

A crucial decision facing the church during his incumbency was that of whether to retain the church building, which was in need of expensive restoration, or to dispose of it in some way and relocate to smaller premises.

After much deliberation by Rev. Jarman, the Vestry and other members of the congregation, the decision was taken to retain the building and raise the funds required to restore it, even though at total sum in the region of £750,000 was required.

The 64-year old Rev. Jarman started the fundraising campaign in August 2002 by leading a sponsored walk around the church building. He circled it 220 times, covering the same amount of ground as a full 26-mile marathon. "I was determined not to let the Corps down - even nine years after I left", he said. "That was one of the things that kept me going".

Rev. Jarman also wrote to 600 other ‘Holy Trinity' churches in the UK and the Republic of Ireland asking for help with the huge appeal. In it, he described himself and the growing Stirling congregation. He received a handful of positive replies and one rebuff: a Welsh Holy Trinity wrote back saying: "We also have an over-50, overweight vicar and we need to meet bills similar to yours. If you've got anything left over at the end, perhaps you could remember us".

The first wave of fundraising brought in more than £3,000 and further initiatives followed, Eventually, financial support was obtained from Historic Scotland, the Lottery Heritage Trust and other bodies.

Rev. Jarman retired in 2003 and moved to Oban. During the ensuing 'interregnum', the Rector's duties were carried out mainly by Rev. Duncan Sladden, assisted by Rev. Alan Gray, both of whom were retired priests who had joined the congregation in hope of a quiet retirement!

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30 July 2015