Andy Scarcliffe is the minister of Portobello Baptist Church. He came to the church in July 2011. He grew up in Helensburgh becoming a Christian at the age of fifteen. He was not brought up in a religious home, but as a teenager became interested in spirituality. He read the Gospels (part of the Bible) and was captured by the life and teachings of Jesus Christ.
He embraced faith, but continued to live in the normal culture of a growing teenager. Clothes and style were important as was music. He played guitar in various bands, but when his close friend and bandmate Kenny Hyslop went professional, eventually playing drums in Simple Minds, Andy knew that this was the time to decide what direction God wanted for his life.
He worked in Public Health and Bacteriology labs for some years, but always felt called to some kind of church work. He trained for Ministry in Spurgeons College, and served his first church – Granton Baptist Church, in Edinburgh. Granton was a housing estate church to the north end of Edinburgh. He later moved to Rising Brook Baptist Church, a multi-congregation town church in Stafford, then to Barnton Baptist Church in 1999. Barnton was predominantly a church of young professionals meeting in a school, and latterly in a David Lloyd Fitness Centre. All three churches grew under his ministry with two building new premises to accommodate that growth. After eight years at Barnton, he left to work for the Baptist Union of Scotland for four years. As Mission Advisor to the Baptist Union he travelled throughout Scotland helping churches become effective in Mission. He encouraged them to be creative and to speak the language of modern culture. His special remit was to pass on insights gained from the Emerging Church and Fresh Expressions of Church. He hopes to bring that experience to Portobello Baptist Church.
Andy is married to Moira and they have three adult sons and a little granddaughter. Most days he visits the gym, and alleviates the boredom of exercise listening to Van Morrison, Leonard Cohen, & the Who among others.
If you want to meet Andy for coffee and a chat, contact him through the website or phone the church on 0131 657 4847.
He looks forward to hearing from you!