Wednesday 20 July 2022

Birkenstock Sunday

It's always a bit boring liturgically this time of year. Harvest a way off and Midsummer is past.

And what with the weather being hot, we have to take care of the clergy. Some like to go barefoot to lead liturgy. Which puts them at risk from wax spillage from candles, of course. But also - consider the temperature of church paths. 

If you're worried about your clergy burning their feet on badly maintained asphalt, my advice is to put your hand down on the path for 10 seconds. If you can't, it's too hot for barefoot clergy.

Likewise be careful of allowing your clergy to go out for walks in this weather. Especially the ones who, goth-like, go out all in black. Ensure that if they're out visiting they get a cup of tea or elderflower pressé wherever they go. But be careful. Some clergy apparently manage to visit 20 parishioners a week. And that much elderflower pressé can wreak havoc on a clerical metabolism. So an alternative is to leave out a small saucer of gin and tonic. Ideally with a few pebbles in, so flower arrangers can climb out.

If your clergy is in the habit of going out in a soutane, encourage them to consider a straw hat or even a biretta. The brim may save their noses from sunburn.

But all things considered I think it's time to let the clergy lighten their mood clothes-wise after the heat of this week (and with the temperature predicted as 86°F this Sunday.
That is why we are declaring Clerical Birkenstock Sunday. Clergy of all denominations are encouraged to wear sandals, flip-flops or kitten heeled strappy shoes. Aware that Birkenstock is not the only brand of sandal, you could also consider the hard-wearing Doctor Marten variety, as we will be modelling in the Moot House. 

But not red Crocs. They're for Pentecost. And ditch the socks, people.
Bermuda Shorts should be considered liturgical wear this Sunday, as opposed to the tedious ties and chinos of the HTB brigade.

And if you must wear alb and amice, why not ditch the cassock? That way people might get a glimpse of your Bermuda Shorts.

Birkenstock Sunday. North Oxford churches may make their own arrangements.

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