A Celtic Tradition
In the early Celtic Church of the 7th Century, Christian missionaries at their task of evangelizing the People of God, would turn towards their Mother Church at midday.
Later in the 12th century, prayer lay at the heart of the monks and nuns of the great monastic houses of Europe. Kings and Princes would come to endow their own chapels with gifts of land and money to ensure prayers were said on their behalf. Sir Willian St Clair built Rosslyn and endowed a College of Canons to pray for his soul and those of his family and comrades. The Canons, Lay and Ordained, lived in the Collegiate Foundation's lodgings close to the newly built Chapel in which they regularly fulfilled their prayer duties.
This tradition is honored today when at Noon on Monday, Wednesday and Friday we offer back to God the hundreds of prayer requests entered by visitors in our prayer request book, and to give thanks for God's blessings.
The Chapel Building
Rosslyn was originally built as a Collegiate Chapel in the 15th century but was never completed. The exclusive remit of its monks was to pray in perpetuity for the souls of the builder and benefactor Sir William St Clair, Prince of Orkney, and his family. Sacked during the Reformation, the building fell into disuse and disrepair until, in 1862, it was re-consecrated under the auspices of the Scottish Episcopal Church.
The current Earl of Rosslyn set up the Rosslyn Chapel Trust which embarked on a major programme of restoration of Chapel, which was completed in 2013.
The Rosslyn Chapel Trust maintains the fabric of the Chapel, while the Priest-in-Charge, Vestry and congregation look after the spiritual life of the Chapel. The Trust is very supportive of the congregation and joint services take place, for example, the rededication of the Chapel each year and for Christmas 'Carols by Candlelight'.