Stag with cross

The Origins of the Kirk

The origins of the Kirk's name go back to the reign of King David in the 12th century. The legend of the Holy Rood tells of the king's miraculous escape from injury whilst riding in the forest near Edinburgh Castle. He had gone hunting on a holy day and was confronted by a white stag, his horse threw him and he fell stunned to the ground. When he came to his senses he was holding a part of the true Cross. In gratitude he founded the monastery of the Holy Rood (or cross). Its seal depicts a stag's head with a cross between its horns.

The land where Grangemouth now stands was controlled by the Abbey of Holy Rood until the Reformation and from this the Lord Lyon King of Arms granted the seal of the Monastery of Holy Rood to be included in the town's Coat of Arms around 1928.

The church was opened and dedicated on 28th June 1963 - providing a Church of Scotland presence in the rapidly expanding Bowhouse area.

The new church had been given an historical name.  Added to that, the bell provided by the Church Extension Committee had first been cast in 1650 for Crathie Church, the Royal family's place of worship near Balmoral.

The Kirk's stained glass windows - made in the original way from coloured pieces of old and new glass - depict, on the left window, the earliest Christian symbol of the fish, and on the right is the pelican, symbol of the Lord's atonement. It is believed that, when food is short, the female pelican will tear open her breast to feed her young - giving her life that they might live - just as Jesus gave His life on the cross for mankind.

Fish windowPelican window

The Kirk Today

Old and new have now merged seamlessly and today KHR is a well-known landmark - it's unusual triangular design with a cross at it's apex - pointing members and parish to the cross - reminding us of it's reason for being there - to reach out and bring the people of the parish in - to share the joy and peace of knowing the love of a forgiving God and then to tell others the Good News.

As you come in to the church at the main door you will see the embroideries on the glass panels. Skilfully sewn by ladies of the congregation and friends, they depict the history of the church and the town, together with Biblical symbols.

The garden was planted in the Millennium year with trees donated in memory of loved ones and as thanks for life's blessings.