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St Kenneths Parish Church

St Kenneths Parish Church, Kennoway

The earliest known "church" in Kennoway was thought to date back to St. Kenneth, who first preached the Christian faith in the East of Fife in the 6th. century AD. Records also account for a church in Kennoway under the cannery of St. Andrews in 1177. In 1619 the original old stone parish church was built and completed in the Causeway, but after falling into disrepair the congregation moved on to the present Norman-style building in 1850.

In the 18th. century there were, throughout Scotland, secessions from the Church of Scotland. In Kennoway this resulted in the formation of a secession church which later became the United Presbyterian Church, and finally the Arnot Church which - in 1975 - re-united with the Old parish Church to form the Church of Scotland, Kennoway. The church building underwent a major refurbishment programme by the congregation in 1994. Kennoway Church has the oldest Communion Cup still in use in Scotland, dating from 1671, which accompanies three others dated 1694, 1704 and 1719.

Over recent years regular worship has been established in Star of Markinch by members of the Kennoway congregation living in the village of Star.

A missionary church was established in Windygates by the United Free Church in Kennoway and by 1917 Windygates Free Church was linked with Kennoway United Free Church. By 1920 the linkage was dissolved and the growing congregation at Windygates was allowed to call its own minister. The church hall was the place of worship until builder James Macintosh built Windygates Church, which was completed in 1926.

The Church at Milton of Balgonie, a village a couple of miles to the west of Windygates, was founded in 1836/37, and in 1956 the congregation united with Windygates to become Windygates Balgonie Church.

In 1996 both churches of Kennoway and Windygates Balgonie fell into vacancy, and in 1997 it was agreed by both Kirk sessions - and overwhelmingly voted upon by the congregational members concerned - to enter into a union, forming the present united congregation today of St. Kenneth's Parish Church.

In this new ministry there are currently three principle places of worship, the main churches at Kennoway and Windygates, and the village hall at Star of Markinch. Sadly, shortly after the union in 1997, the church building at Milton of Balgonie had to close due to serious disrepair, but St. Kenneth's remains active in the village. There is currently an informal evening fellowship held each month at Balgonie Castle, and over time we hope to develop further opportunities for worship in Milton.

St. Kenneth's today continues to carry out God's work in the whole of the parish, dedicating its name to the Celtic missionary who spread the faith so successfully in this part of Fife those many centuries ago.

Whichever church of St. Kenneth's you visit we hope you feel welcome and enjoy the service or your time with us. Please make yourselves known to our office bearers and sign our Visitors Book which is situated in the vestibule (see our Welcome Team Leader - Star). You are also warmly invited to join us for tea or coffee after the service or during your stay with us.

If you would like to visit this area as part of a highly personalized small group tour of my native Scotland please e-mail me:

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