Tag Archives: Scottish Parliament

Those damn Presbyterians!


doc2Presbyterianism is proving to be an important factor in the lives of some of my ancestors, so I’ve been learning more about it.

My great grandmother’s mother was born into an Ulster Presbyterian family. They came to America from Northern Ireland in 1790 and likely migrated from Scotland before that, settling in Ireland.

The Hill family, based on oral traditions and DNA evidence, likely came from Scotland during America’s colonial days. We are closely related to the Johnsons-Johnstons-Johnstowns of southwest Scotland.

August 25, 1560: Led by John Knox, the reformed Church of Scotland is established on Protestant lines. The Scottish parliament accepts the Calvinistic Scots Confession, forbids the mass, and declares the pope has no jurisdiction in Scotland.

But the story doesn’t end there!

The following year things were complicated (to say the least) by the return from France of Mary Queen of Scots to assume her throne and adhere personally to the Catholicism in which she had been raised.



“Work as if you lived in the early days of a better nation.” Or world.

A mistake etched in stone.

This is etched on a wall at the Scottish Parliament. It is often misattributed to a Scottish writer and artist named Alasdair Gray. Gray credits Dennis Lee, a Canadian poet. A paraphrase of this quote — “Work as if you live in the early days of a better world.” — is on a mural in a subway station in Glasgow.