Council of Assembly

Our remit

The Council of Assembly has the authority to take administrative decisions between General Assemblies, co-ordinate the work of the Church's central administration and take decisions about resources, finances and staffing.

This includes

  • Providing guidance on management, organisation and administration, and advising the General Assembly on the relative importance of work being undertaken by its various agencies
  • Recommending to the General Assembly the total amount of the Church's co-ordinated budget for the following financial year and how it should be allocated, and preparing an indicative rolling budget for the following five financial years
  • Distributing legacies and donations amongst the agencies of the General Assembly, and considering proposals on purchasing and selling property and other assets
  • Determining staffing and resourcing requirements of agencies of the General Assembly, in line with the General Assembly's priorities, other than those serving in particular parishes or overseas
  • Dealing with urgent issues arising between meetings of the General Assembly, which do not fall within the jurisdiction of the Commission of Assembly, presbytery or kirk session, and are not of a legislative or judicial nature

Annual Reports

Our membership

  • Convener - Dr Sally Bonnar, Elder at Perth: North
  • Vice-convener – Catherine Coull, Elder at Dundee: Chalmers-Ardler
  • Secretary to the Council of Assembly - Rev Dr Martin Scott


  • Bill Steele, Convener, Social Care Council
  • John Corrigan, Elder at Stewarton: John Knox
  • Rev Iain Cunningham, Convener, World Mission Council
  • Rev Graham Duffin, Convener, Panel on Review and Reform
  • Rev Dr John Ferguson, Minister at Peterculter
  • Elizabeth Fox, Elder at London:  St Columba's
  • Rev Dr Richard Frazer, Convener, Church and Society Council
  • Rev Neil Glover, Convener, Ministries Council
  • Isobel Hunter, Elder at Skirling
  • Anne Lamont, Elder at Edinburgh: Leith North
  • Rev Prof Andrew McGowan, Minister at Inverness: East 
  • Rev Norman Smith, Convener, Mission and Discipleship Council
  • Rev Alan Sorensen, Minister at Greenock: Wellpark Mid Kirk
  • David Watt, Elder, Airdrie: New Wellwynd
  • Rev Ian Alexander, Council secretary, World Mission Council
  • Peter Bailey, Council secretary, Social Care Council
  • Rev Dr Martin Johnstone, Council secretary, Church and Society Council
  • Rev Jayne Scott, Council secretary, Ministries Council
  • Very Rev Dr John Chalmers, Principal Clerk
  • Anne Macintosh, General Treasurer of the Church
  • Mary Macleod, Solicitor of the Church

Contact for more information

Email or contact us at the Church's offices in Edinburgh.


The Council of Assembly usually meets on the third Monday of June, September, November, December, February, and April. Unless otherwise stated, all meetings of the Council will take place at the Church offices at 121 George Street, Edinburgh.


Minutes from Council of Assembly meetings: