Tuesday, 17 July 2018

Festival of Frogs

As the warm weather progresses we felt it right to acknowledge the spiritual significance of frogs.

Unfortunately the only parable we know about frogs is that story about the one in the well that can't see much sky. We did talk about liturgically dropping them down the Legendary Endless Well, but when we did a test-drop it went "splat" rather than "splash". Clearly not as bottomless as we thought. Or it really has been a dry summer.

Still, I would like us all to take away this thought.

A frog doesn't dream of lordship. Doesn't stress itself with ambition. Doesn't reach for the sky - even that patch it could see from the bottom of a well, if it hadn't died tragically when it landed.

No,  frogs swim about, free. Mate once a year, with reckless abandon, for about a week. Slink through the dewy grass of morn exulting in the sheer stuffness of things.

And then get tragically strimmed. Or torn to pieces by a cat. Or eaten by a dog. It ain't easy being green.

Saturday, 14 July 2018

Diary of an Ex-Clergy of the Church of England

Monday: Check to see what the Church of England has been up to now. Probably ordaining eggs or marrying Pokemons. Read the Telegraph. An article on how useless the Archbishop of Canterbury is and how George Carey was better. Make a witty comment on Twitter about how useless the Church of England is.

Tuesday: Read in the Mail that you have to be a member of the Communist Party, a witch, or - worse - a Remainer to be allowed to be ordained in the Church of England these days. Write a witty comment on Facebook about how useless the Church of England is. Thank goodness I've resigned and don't have to think about this any more. 

Wednesday: I see on the BBC web page that a vicar has carried out a blessing service for two gay clergymen who have had a civil partnership. Disgusting. When I was a young priest, homosexuals were supposed to keep very quiet about it and go around calling each other names like Alice. I regret that the glory has departed. Although at least the gay clergymen were men.

Thursday: I write a blog post about how the Church of England has fallen. Some clergy these days did not go to even a minor public school. No wonder they do not understand how to be closet homosexuals properly.

Friday: A vicar in Lincolnshire has received a fine for speeding. This is what happens once you separate the clergy from the Establishment. Once upon a time you could be 4 times over the limit, give the traffic constable the appropriate handshake, and receive a merry "on your way, Sir!" without even troubling the scorer. This is not the Church of England I grew up in, and then left because it was not the Church I grew up in.

Saturday: A wedding car has broken down on the A509. In many ways a parable for the state of the Church of England. Serves them right. I don't suppose that the bride is a virgin. That is how standards have slipped.

Sunday: As I conduct Divine Worship I rejoice that I am now completely free of the Church of England. It was a wrench to leave but now it never crosses  my mind.

Friday, 13 July 2018

A Poem for Flying Ants Day

They fly so high
into the sky
little fly-
ing ants.

Nude ants
do their new dance
which works if you're from Harrogate
and I ripped off the joke from Keith Jarrett
who I always confuse with Keith Thomas
who wrote the "seminal"
Religion and the Decline of Magic.
But that's not really important now.
Because there's flying ants, which are tragic.
But Nude Ants is an album you can listen to more than twice.
Cool. Nice.

A million mites
take their flights
to seek the queen
they've never seen

And so one lucky get
will meet his Juliet
but when his ardour's done
his wings fall off. His life is gone.
Death death death death
Death death death death
Death death death death.

The others, bound
to fly around
then  sink to the ground
and if they fall in a pond, they/re drowned
and eaten by a fish.
Death death death death
Death death death death
Death death death death
Death death death death

Does God cry
when you die
little fly-
ing ant?
Is there a place
where this race
 receives grace
little ant?
Death death death death
Death death death death
Death death death death
Death death death death


Mellissa Sparrow (Mrs)



Want to support this blog?
Want a good laugh? Want to laugh at the church? Want to be secretly suspicious that the author has been sitting in your church committee meetings taking notes? Then Writes of the Church: Gripes and grumbles of people in the pews is probably the book for you.

From Amazon, Sarum Bookshop, The Bible Readers Fellowship and other good Christian bookshops. An excellent book for your churchgoing friends, relatives or vicar. By the creator of the Beaker Folk.

Wednesday, 11 July 2018

"If He Had Broken the Law then He Would Have Been Sinful"

Based on this theological reflection by Floridian pastor, Paula White.

Moses: Murdered an Egyptian.

King David: Ate the priest's bread.

Jesus: Claimed to be God (blasphemy)

St Stephen: Blasphemy

Early Christians: Refused to declare Caesar as Lord. (treason)

The American Revolutionaries (treason)

Dietrich Bonhoeffer (conspiracy to murder)

Now I'm not saying you should just go out there and drive too fast. And we all like a lawful society  But crimes ain't always sins. That's all I'm saying.

Saturday, 7 July 2018

New Readings of Scripture

Based on Matt's Tweet: 


Then he said to another man, "Follow me." And the man said to him, "I will follow you. But maybe not till next Thursday?" And he said to him, "O ye of little faith...."




Want to support this blog?
Want a good laugh? Want to laugh at the church? Want to be secretly suspicious that the author has been sitting in your church committee meetings taking notes? Then Writes of the Church: Gripes and grumbles of people in the pews is probably the book for you.

From Amazon, Sarum Bookshop, The Bible Readers Fellowship and other good Christian bookshops. An excellent book for your churchgoing friends, relatives or vicar. By the creator of the Beaker Folk.

Trump-Baby Nigel

Nigel Farage downs a few and then complains about the Trump baby blimp. Warning : This is a link to the Daily Express.

After all, we've all seen the way that Donald Trump is always dignified in the way he treats his enemies, former friends and disabled journalists. And, of course, we know about his habit of stealing women's cats. [Hnaef - can you check if I've got this right?"] So we know what we've got here is the Right, which complaints about people being "politically correct" getting all touchy when it's applied to them.

The apotheosis of this attitude occurs in the comments below the line. Don't go there. I do this so you don't have to. But here is "Birdymum".

 "Your point needs to be made over at the
snowflake led Guardian"

That's right. A person getting upset about a balloon has referred to other people as snowflakes. I guess it's a case of snowflake, melt thyself.

This is what Nigel Farage said about free speech a couple of months ago:

And yet curiously when it's his mate being satirised, free speech isn't so free. It's almost like what Nigel Farage wants, is free speech that agrees with him. We treated Nigel Farage like a joke. He isn't a joke. He's a demagogue whose former party, and then Leave campaign, has used constant racist hints to get votes. He has pursued a vendetta against an organisation that he hates, to the harm of this country, and especially to the harm of the people he persuaded to follow him. And now seems to think he and his chums are entitled to protection from ridicule.

People with this attitude have more power than they used to have. And they have thin skins. Brexit in this country, Trump's election, were the result of the powerful but not quite in charge, persuading  the nervous, suspicious and resentful that it was that other elite that was doing them down. If you're in favour of free speech but only if you like the speech, if you're part of the elite yet define those parts of the "elite" that are the real elite - if you campaign against migrants while being married to people who've come from other countries - then you're a hypocrite. You're dangerous. And we need to ensure that the counter-message is more compelling, and more truthful, than that.

So for complaining about the Trump-baby, while demanding free speech, Farage is a snowflake. A 100%, 6-sided, perfectly symmetrical crystal that melts when daylight falls on it. He'll be back in  the game now, sensing the chance to apply his bile to the Government's attempted negotiating position. His old party's leader is meanwhile claiming that Tommy Robinson is a free-speech martyr not a dangerous twerp who could have caused a number of trials to collapse. These are dangerous times. At the risk of mixing my metaphors, at the tip of every iceberg there's a snowflake.

Want to support this blog?
Want a good laugh? Want to laugh at the church? Want to be secretly suspicious that the author has been sitting in your church committee meetings taking notes? Then Writes of the Church: Gripes and grumbles of people in the pews is probably the book for you.

From Amazon, Sarum Bookshop, The Bible Readers Fellowship and other good Christian bookshops. An excellent book for your churchgoing friends, relatives or vicar. By the creator of the Beaker Folk.

World Cup / Wedding Clashes

One of those things that cause much consternation in the papers and in cyberspace, when people's weddings clash with football fixtures.

And it's a real shame that the football match this afternoon clashes with  Hamwise and Gadgmir's handfasting.

Still, you've got to make sacrifices.

So we've moved the ceremony to September.

Tuesday, 3 July 2018

Feast of Doubt and Uncertainty

Please can we not enter into our St Thomas's Day with quite such enthusiasm as last year.

Having people shouting "I find that hard to believe" all the way through the sermon was, frankly, a bit annoying.

But all the way through the Nicene Creed? We might as well be in the Church of England.

PROGRAMME FOR THE DAY

9 am : A Celebration of Dynamic Doubt

11 am : Conspiracy Theory Corner

12 noon : Lunch. Or is it really?

2 pm : The Don Cupitt hour

4 pm : "I Believe I Can Fly" : The Theology of Our Kelly

7 - 10 pm : England qualify for the Quarter Finals of the Men's Football World Cup

Sunday, 1 July 2018

Special order of service of Sympathy for Sergio Ramos

Hymn: Crying in the Rain

Archdruid: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
All: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

Archdruid: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
All: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

Archdruid: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
All: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

Archdruid: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
All: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

Archdruid: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
All: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha 

Archdruid: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
All: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha 

Archdruid: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
All: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha 

Archdruid: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
All: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha 

Archdruid: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
All: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

Hymn: Who's Crying Now




Want to support this blog?
Want a good laugh? Want to laugh at the church? Want to be secretly suspicious that the author has been sitting in your church committee meetings taking notes? Then Writes of the Church: Gripes and grumbles of people in the pews is probably the book for you.

From Amazon, Sarum Bookshop, The Bible Readers Fellowship and other good Christian bookshops. An excellent book for your churchgoing friends, relatives or vicar. By the creator of the Beaker Folk.