Thursday, July 4th, 2013 | Tags: Latest News

imageAnyone who knows anything about St. Andrew’s Church will know that, in terms of our community outreach, we have a particular focus on working among those who struggle with addiction problems. This ministry,  which we call Havilah, runs out of our Community Spirit building on Fisheracre, sited a few hundred yards from our main buildings. Just recently, a shop called ‘Misty Heaven’ has opened just yards away. Unbelievably, this shop deals in so-called ‘legal highs’ and all kinds of other drug-related paraphenalia. It seems incredible that such substances can be sold legally and that no permissions etc. are required for such trading to take place. This stands in marked contrast to our own experience; it took us years to find a building and gain the necessary permission to open our centre which is about combatting drug problems in our community! Now, we have a shop which is only adding fuel to the fire – and, apparently, there’s nothing that the police or officials can do about it.image

But here’s an issue in our parish about which we’re not prepared to sit back and do nothing. On Saturday morning 6th July, we staged a protest outside the shop, making clear our opposition. Between 70 and 80 people came along, from St. Andrew’s and other churches and concerned members of the public. First and foremost, our purpose was to raise awareness of what’s going on. Hardly anyone in Arbroath is aware that this shop exists, or is aware of what it sells. To that end, we can declare, ‘Mission Accomplished!’ We managed to gather a lot of publicity and newspaper coverage and so, certainly, the subject is on the agenda. But we will continue to do what we can until it is closed; that’s our aim.

The shop may well be operating legally but what of the moral considerations? Are we prepared to see this form of drug-taking legitimised and paraded openly on our streets? Sometimes keeping silent is not the answer.

Here are the set of slides we viewed together before praying and protesting: Legal High prayer