Comann Eachdraichd Uig

A Church in Trinidad

Colin Ian Maclean (Cailean Ruaraidh Phadraig) was born in 1927 in Crowlista and brought up at 8 Timsgarry. He was minister of the Church of Scotland charge of Trinidad, Port of Spain: Greyfriars and St Ann’s at the time of the laying of this foundation stone for this new building at Arouca.

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These photographs have been contributed by Roddy Maclean and taken by a friend of his currently working in Trinidad. Roddy’s father Colin Ian Maclean (Cailean Ruaraidh Phadraig, born 1927 in Crowlista and brought up at 8 Timsgarry) was minister of the Church of Scotland charge of Trinidad, Port of Spain: Greyfriars and St Ann’s at the time of the laying of this foundation stone for this new building at Arouca.

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Anna, Colin’s daughter, remembers the day in 1977 well as she was working in Trinidad as a nanny for a year while her father worked his three-year contract. She recalls that the service was in the afternoon of a hot, tropical day. The local refinery steel band came to lead the praise. The whole community gathered in their Sunday best and the strains of Psalm 121, ‘I to the Hills’, rang out loud and clear to the accompaniment of the steel drums; the people swayed and smiled as they sang and the memory of it still brings joy to her heart when it is recalled. A very different Sunday afternoon from those of her father’s youth!

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This industrial area was a mission church of the larger congregation of Scottish exiles in Port of Spain. The congregation of St Ann’s was of Portuguese origin and it also had a mission at Sangre Grande. Colin was the senior minister in the team which looked after the four congregations. Previous to that he had been a minister in Kinlochbervie, in Durness, Sutherland, and at Martin’s Memorial Church in Stornoway. Following his time in Trinidad he went to the Barony in Glasgow and then to St Andrew’s, Rome.

He died in Edinburgh aged 62 on 30 October 1990

It is interesting to think of the large number of ministers that the parish of Uig has produced. Cailean Ruaraidh Phadraig’s maternal uncles, Kenneth, James and Neil Mackay (Crowlista) and paternal great uncle, Peter Maclean (also Crowlista) served in Scotland and Canada between them and there are many others who served widely in the Church in Scotland and beyond. As a result, and similar to many other families, there are Macleans and Mackays around the world who have their ancestral roots in Uig.

We would be pleased to hear from any and all of them, especially with further information about their Uig families around the world.

Warm thanks to Roddy and Anna.

2 thoughts on “A Church in Trinidad

  1. Added to that list of ministers should be my father’s double first cousin, the Rev John Macdonald (Iain Knox), and John’s son, Finlay who was CoS moderator in 2002.

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