Scots Church, Melbourne

4.2
The Scots' Church is a Presbyterian church in Melbourne, Australia. It was the first Presbyterian church to be built in the Port Phillip District (now the state of Victoria) and is located on Collins Street. It is a congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Australia and has been described as "an icon for well over a hundred years".BackgroundThe Reverend James Forbes was recruited to come to Australia as a Presbyterian minister by the Revd John Dunmore Lang, arriving in Melbourne from Sydney via boat on 20 January 1838. He found that a retired Church of Scotland minister, the Revd James Clow, had arrived on 25 December 1837 and had commenced an afternoon service from 2 pm and 4 pm according to Presbyterian forms in a basic building constructed west of William Street and north of Little Collins Street (now the site of the AMP centre). Clow had been a Church of Scotland chaplain in Bombay, India but had retired and was of independent means. He had intended to settle in South Australia but when he stopped en route in Hobart the positive reports about Port Phillip led him to visit the Port Phillip District in October 1837 and then settle permanently.Original churchForbes continued the Presbyterian services commenced by Clow on 31 December 1837 in the "Pioneers Church" near the north west corner of William Street and Little Collins Street. The Church of England soon made exclusive claims to this communal building and so Forbes held services in Craig and Broadfoot's store in Collins Street until a temporary timber building called "The Scots' Church" was opened on the adjoining land loaned by David Fisher in July 1838. The site was between where the Olderfleet and Rialto buildings were subsequently erected (Lot 14 Section 2). It was essentially a large room with a fireplace.
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Scots Church Reviews
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  • October 5, 2017
    The architecture is beautiful and reflects the period when it was built in the mid 1800's.Inside is not that special but definitely worth a visit.  more »
  • August 31, 2017
    Next time I am visiting Melbourne I will spend a day just exploring the churches. So many superb old churches, each one of them is filled with character and stories to tell. Scots Church is another li...  more »
  • August 26, 2017
    Because I went to this church on 5 July and August, although neither enters became only the appearance of exclusively. Little black stone Spire with a look, have a very profound feeling and amazement. Also because it is surrounded by skyscrapers in downtown Nice gap between old and new feel.
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  • December 31, 2016
    Extremely photogenic location and unlike some other city churches they don't mind you coming in for photos. They had a great artistic display during White Night Melbourne festival.
  • October 1, 2016
    I like it here. The people are kind and the teaching is Biblically sound. It can be tempting to be very critical of a Church, especially in the times we live in, but it is more important to remember that the congregants and leadership are all humans. All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, but God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that whoever believed in him could be forgiven and given a place in God's family.
  • December 12, 2016
    I was born and raised a catholic but over the last few years I have been questioning religion and God. Al though not being super religious I at times wander around old parish buildings and churches across Melbourne in pure awe of the architecture and the workmanship of some of these buildings. During one such trip I stumbled upon this church and let me tell you the experience wasn't very good - reason being the guy at the front desk was having a small talk with me about the day, life experiences etc. in return I asked him if they conduct any regular mass especially around Christmas time. For some odd reason the word "mass" triggered him and he became very angry at me and you could tell by the way his body language and his tone changed towards me. He immediately retorted and said it's not a "mass" we call it service (you better get that right). Being an ex-catholic I thought the word is not a huge deal and he shouldn't have reacted so angrily? I know I might have been ignorant in my choice of words but isn't it in your Bible telling people to have patience and not lose your cool over trivial issues? And yet you wonder why Christian population is dwindling across first world countries; perhaps you may need to rethink the way you treat people at your church for a start?
  • September 7, 2017
    Iconic, grand yet contemporary
  • December 12, 2013
    Today I attended the worst sermon that I have ever heard in 65 years. The Minister David Currie instead of preaching the Gospel, proceeded to give the congregation a lesson in race relations.The drivel that then followed would not have converted a single non believer who happened to attend the service. In fact a visitor would have come away with the feeling of hearing some party political broadcast. Of course then we had to sit through some claptrap about Mandela, by a man who's grasp of South African history is tenuous to say the least. A communist terrorist had suddenly been elevated to the status of a saint. Great preachers like Martin Lloyd Jones never preached politics in any of his great sermons. The result was a Church filled to capacity - not a Church with a mere scattering of believers. David Currie is a confused preacher who has forgotten how to preach the gospel.

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