Rev William Macartney; born October 11, 1912, died December 18, 1999

WILLIAM Macleod Macartney, educated at George Watson's College, graduated MA with Hons (History) at Edinburgh University and studied Divinity at New College, Edinburgh. His family had strong connections with Dunoon and Dumbarton.

After licensing and Ordination to Holy Ministry, William and his wife Jay sailed for the

then Gold Coast (now Ghana) where, in 1939, he was appointed for service at the Teacher Training College in Akropong. His work there was recognised

as very faithful and outreaching - it was to be highlighted in

two books which he wrote

Dr Aggrey, Ambassador for Africa and The Church and the Underdog.

Ruth and Allan were born during William's ministry in Ghana. When William and Jay and their two children returned to Scotland, his call in February 1946 was to the Church and Parish of St Machar's, Bridge of Weir. Morag was born shortly after their return from Africa. Outreach to Youth, pastoral work, and preaching of a very high standard were ever to the fore as was William's part in presbytery and General Assembly committees.

The then Collegiate Charge of Elgin, St Giles, and St Columba's, became vacant. Mr Macartney was chosen as sole minister in early 1952. There was an understanding that there should always be an ordained assistant. The new sphere of service was in one of the busiest charges in Scotland. An outstanding ministry was carried out. Those probationers privileged to work in this parish and in St Machar's Cathedral always counted it most helpful to have had such excellent guidance, not only in the formative years of their ministry but also to have similar advice later in their parishes.

Mr Macartney's churchmanship, excellent ability in pulpit and parish, coupled with his gifts as an administrator, resulted in his being called to the Cathedral Church of St Machar, Aberdeen, in 1960. The variety of ministry there was no less exacting than in Elgin, and the connection with Aberdeen University was stimulating. Again, gifts of hand, heart, and pen were ever to the fore and as before the open door at the manse continued. Jay Macartney's love for people and practical assistance was shown in a truly supportive way.

A most crippling and severe illness curtailed William Macartney's work in Aberdeen.

A call to him came from the parishes of Hutton, Fishwick, and Paxton in the Borders. During this time he was appointed convener of the General Assembly's Committee on Publications. Always a true believer in printed material for Church folk and for outreach generally, he carried out this work assiduously.

The varied, active ministry of William Macartney was continued next in a completely different sphere. He was invited to be minister of the Community Church in Vienna, an immensely satisfying and fruitful call to someone who had once studied, and often travelled, in Germany and other European countries.

Retirement took William and Jay Macartney to Coupar Angus. ''The Boss'' (as he was known to his assistants) was soon in demand as Interim Moderator, locum tenens, occasional ''supply'' preacher and, to a very advanced age, a most loved Sunday School teacher.

Jay's passing in September 1995 after a long illness left William very much bereft after their marriage of 57 years. The passing of Allan in August 1998 came very suddenly. He was a very talented son whose gifts, as lecturer, Member of the European Parliament and Rector of Aberdeen University marked a brilliant career. It was a source of great satisfaction to his father that through the most extraordinary, unplanned circumstances, Allan spent some time with him the night before he died.

He was a founder member of St Machar's Rotary Club, Aberdeen, served on the Community Council in Coupar Angus, and was a founder member and first president of the Blairgowrie Probus Club, where his poetry, verse, and sense of humour will long be remembered.

He is survived by two daughters.