The Church of Scotland

Burntisland Parish Church

a living church in an historic building

“This Church exists to bring people to Jesus, grow disciples, love one another, serve the wider community, and to glorify and worship God together.”

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The first church to serve the people of the area was built at the Kirkton, and consecrated in 1234 on land given by King David 1st of Scotland.

On 29th July 1587, with the consent of Parliament, the various Grants and Charters in favour of the Burgh of Burntisland were ratified by James VI. The Royal Charter  required that a church should be built in Burntisland, and our present church was commenced in 1592 and completed in 1595.

The church is built on a square plan unique in Scotland with people sitting on all four sides of the church, with the pulpit and communion table in the centre of the church.  The church buildings was one of the first to be built in Scotland after the reformation. It reflects the reformers belief that the preaching of the bible, baptism and the Lord's Supper were all to be celebrated in the midst of the people of God.

The Church is sometimes known as the Kirk of the bible. The General Assembly of the Church of Scotland met here in 1601 and proposed to King James VI that a new English translation of the Bible would make the Scriptures more accessible to the people and this was approved. In time this was published as of the King James or Authorised Version of the Bible.  During 2001 a month of celebrations were held to mark this historic event.

As recently as May 2003 we obtained the information that the Stone Mason who built the church was John Roche, who was probably also the Architect. He received his final payment in 1596 for " Ye warke wrought be him to the Kirk."

Our church building is unique historically and, following the extensive restoration carried out in the 1990's, is in excellent condition.

The church is open for visitors during June, July and August, 2pm-4pm Monday to Friday, on most Friday mornings you can come into the coffee morning in the hall next door and we can usually open up for you. At other times by arrangement with our beadle, Mr Ian Motion 01592 872011.

A much fuller account of the church's history is available in the the following article

Article on the church by Hendry F. Kerr "TRANSACTIONS of the SCOTTISH ECCLESIOLOGICAL SOCIETY 1941-45t"

Pictures of the church circa  from Hendry Kerr's article 1941-45


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Burntisland Parish Church