Sunday, 12 August 2012

The Business of Religion

It's always been one of those debates - to what degree should the church act like a business? There are those who say we should use our resources efficiently, identify and expand our core markets and maximise our USP. Whereas others say Jesus didn't create a franchise - he started a family.

Well, my Spiritual Director has totally blurred the line, hasn't she? Got herself paid via a Jersey account and then, when she knew my spiritual health was heading downhill, flogged off the shares in my well-being before making the announcement to the City. She was in the Caymans before trading opened.

1 comment :

  1. This morning I listened to Radio Kent as a CofE Bishop mentioned using swipe cards and cash machines for church giving.

    He had the temerity to say that many Clergy are not up to speed with the financial advantages of internet giving using such resources as '' - his view point was that we needed to give up with the older members of our congregations who with their ipads and mobile devices were using these resources every day.

    I was driving at the time and had to pull over across three lanes of traffic to draw breath, because he had taken mine quite away.

    Where to Bishops get off telling clergy what they should be doing? They'll be expecting oaths of obedience next!!

    Our parish recently had one of those stewardship thingies, where well meaning people come from Diocese in an attempt to persuade us to empty our coffers into that of the church, to allow said Bishops to live in Grace and Favour houses and to enjoy the services of endless servants (nominally named as Chaplain's) to do their bidding.

    It wasn't a huge success. The fact that the Arch Deacon escorted them in a huge 'Beamer' which she drove and couldn't get into the car park (where our modest Mini's and VW's fit well) upset the Church Warden who was bid "You there, stand by my car and ensure no of the peasants damage it'. And DBF rep was discomfited that we didn't have power point available and wasn't really able to get their complicated spread sheets across on the chalk board hurriedly brought in from the Village School.

    Diana, who is hard of hearing, kept saying loudly the loop is playing up, there's loads of screeching going on - when in fact if was the sound of the chalk being dragged across the chalk board with what to me, seemed some venom.

    No, all in all, not a success, which convinced us hard up parishioners that if they could afford to drive big cars and use computers for everything, perhaps we needed to withhold another 10% of quota in addition to the 90% we withhold due to our theological differences with the idea of paying for anything other than our own clergy.

    The visit ended in a bit of a farce as it turned out that the Church Warden having got fed up with watching the car had decided to take it for a joy ride, as he knew that it would give him great joy to drive such an expensive car. Unfortunately, being seen driving up the high street with one hand on the wheel and the other clasping an open bottle of communion wine is not the best way to spend a Sunday morning. As he wan't insured for the car it has been towed away and the Arch Deacon has to pay a £250 penalty to release it.

    The Church Warden having slept it off was OK for Evensong.

    It'll be a long time before DBF invite themselves back for stewardship visit :)


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