Church minister; Born April 7, 1941; Died March 13, 2009.

Leith Fisher, who has died aged 67, was one of the ablest Church of Scotland ministers of his generation. Talented but with self-effacing manner, he retired as minister of Wellington Church three years ago.

As well as a fine preacher and exceptional parish minister, he had a gift for words as the author of commentaries on gospels and the writer of hymns - seven of which made their way into the latest edition of the Church's hymnary.

Fisher was born in Greenock and educated at Glasgow University where he graduated in arts and divinity, and during his divinity studies he chaired the Scottish Christian Youth Assembly.

He then took a diploma in pastoral studies at Birmingham University and in 1966 became the assistant minister of Govan Old Parish. He joined the Iona Community and while assistant at Govan stayed in one of the flats in Community House in Clyde Street, the other occupied by the warden and his wife, Douglas and Joyce Alexander.

Fisher was someone who cared deeply about those whom society marginalised or ignored, and he went from Govan Old to work in the Calton area of Glasgow.

His work there demonstrated two qualities he was to carry on into his parish ministries. He was completely at ease with the Calton young people who recognised he was someone who would be totally straightforward with them and so they gave him their trust.

Fisher stayed at Calton for more than 10 years and in 1979 became minister of Falkirk Old, which later united with St Modan's. His resourcefulness and ability to come up with fresh ideas and his down-to-earth practicality about faith marked his ministry.

Fisher was not someone who talked piously about what he expected people to become involved in. He simply asked them to share his conviction that social concern, a passion for justice, lively worship and respect for others were at the heart of Christian commitment.

In 1990, Fisher moved to Wellington Church in Glasgow and, as well as continuing the pattern of ministry he had established in Falkirk, he became involved in broadcasting, becoming a regular and effective communicator on Thought for the Day.

He began publishing his commentary studies on Gospel readings, which, although rooted in the insights of biblical scholars, were the product of a minister's parish experience and respect for people.

He served as convener of the General Assembly's Panel on Worship and many other committees. Leith Fisher was married to Nonie, a daughter of Pat and Uist Macdonald, who was one of the founder members in 1938 of the Iona Community. She survives him along with their three sons and two daughters. By Johnston McKay