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Pull up a pew (or a fetching plastic chair) Religion Chat Thread No 6

(290 Posts)
madhairday Wed 25-Sep-13 08:57:31


A shiny new thread smile

How are we all today?

DS seems to have the beginning of what may be chicken pox so is in bed feeling sorry for himself. My laptop is playing up - a picture fell on it yesterday and killed the b key - it takes ages to make it respond now grrrr - and cracked the screen, so not sure what to do sad

nickelbabe Thu 05-Dec-13 17:39:35

is there a secular choir you could join in your town or would it take up too much time?

Dutchoma Thu 05-Dec-13 18:13:52

Don't really want a secular choir. I worship through singing. The singing in our church is appalling. So it will be either nothing or maybe attend the nearest CofE which is very high or the parish church which does have a choir, but not a very big one. We'll have to see how it pans out in the new year, just at the moment I have so much to think about that this is just one thought too far.

nickelbabe Thu 05-Dec-13 19:08:38

I would answer the same as you.

Bluetinkerbell Mon 09-Dec-13 09:24:26

<stumbles in> how are you all?

bellsringingoutforMadHairDay Mon 09-Dec-13 16:33:12

Hello Blue. I was doing really well until a difficult meeting this morning. 2 steps forward, 1 step back and all that. feeling a bit low. But things going v well in general smile and health is OK, so I am thankful. How are you?

I hope you can find something Oma, perhaps there is another church choir somewhere you can key into? So sorry it's closing down, that must be v sad for you. sad Would anyone at your church be interested in a new choir maybe? Or is there a choir and it's bad?

Dutchoma Mon 09-Dec-13 17:06:37

Because I am so tied down it makes it all difficult. I understand why the choir has got to stop, it's just that it was the last thread that bound me to the church. No doubt something will turn up. I just don't have the energy to change churches again. It's pretty awful, but I don't really miss it t the moment.

thanksamillion Mon 09-Dec-13 18:06:28

Sorry to hear that Oma, you are in my prayers.

MHD everything is 2 steps forward 1 back here. We call it doing the Hora (the traditional Moldovan dance which is basically that!). Very frustrating but you are getting there a little bit at a time smile

Our good news is that we've got another lady who has asked to come to church with us and has joined our little study group, along with her 11yo daughter and her daughters friend! Baby steps but it's good!

oma (at the risk of sounding HC) - god will tell you what to do <hug>

Dutchoma Wed 11-Dec-13 21:20:18

Yeah, even if He doesn't speak, He is still there.

niminypiminy Thu 12-Dec-13 09:49:54

Oh, Oma, that is hard news about the choir. I'm praying that God will show you a way to worship him through singing, and in the meantime will hold you close in his loving arms.

We're all moved in to the new house after a manic few days. There's no heating upstairs, and the window in DS2's new room is broken so it is always slightly open. Poor thing -- DS1 not only bagged the biggest and nicest bedroom so he has to have the box room, but it is also freezing. There are times when I'm so furious with DS1's lack of empathy I can hardly speak to him. It just wouldn't occur to him that he might think about DS2's wants. And I can't get him to see, cognitively, that DS2's point of view is as valid as his own. And if he doesn't get what he wants he pulls a mighty tantrum. He's already called me a fucking bitch once this week because I didn't buy him some chewing gum. Aaaaargh!

is there any way they can share until the window is fixed?
a portable oil-filled radiator? big thick heavy curtains?,

bellsringingoutforMadHairDay Thu 12-Dec-13 13:28:44

Oh niminy that sounds hard. Have you got a fan heater you can use for now? Hope it can be fixed soon, moving is stressful enough. Do hope that your DSes can settle in well soon.

cloutiedumpling Thu 12-Dec-13 14:36:30

Delurking to say I'm thinking of everyone. Hope your lungs are behaving MHD and that the window/heating is fixed soon.

Jaynebxl Fri 13-Dec-13 07:24:49

O boy Niminy I hope you can get the window fixed soon :-(. How's the unpacking going?

Oma I really hope you find something that you really enjoy again soon.

Is anyone else feeling totally overwhelmed by how much there is to do for Christmas? Fortunately DH is a champion online present buyer otherwise nobody would have anything this year!

Dutchoma Fri 13-Dec-13 16:23:22

Well, we heard yesterday that our minister will 'have a go' with the choir. He is very brilliant, but as senior minister of a large Baptist church he won't be able to give it a lot of time. But at least next week's practice is not going to be the very last we have, even if we can't sing every week.

Jaynebxl Fri 13-Dec-13 17:18:49

Aw I'm glad it isn't all over. Maybe someone else will step in in the new year.

niminypiminy Fri 13-Dec-13 18:43:01

DO that is marvellous news. I am so pleased you will still be able to sing, even if it is not as often as you would like.

The window is bodged with insulating tape, so the wind doesn't howl through at least, and a man is coming to look at it on Monday, and we have an oil-filled radiator. So I can stop worrying that DS2 will freeze.

And I am starting a new regime with DS1 of 'let it wash over you, keep calm, and say the Jesus prayer'. If I can manage not to take it personally, hopefully it will help to defuse the anger a bit.

that is good news Oma.
Hopefully he'll be able to fidn a new choirmaster to fill the role

We're back on the Lord's Prayer argument again.

Thought it had been resolved, but no, his new order of service for christmas-epiphany has the shit version in it.
tried to argue it again, but he's really closed his ears this time.
one of his comments was about "thoguht it might be a good idea to alternate them" (theory being give everybody what they want? hmm)

but unfortunately, that really doesn't work, because the year would go like this:
Ordinary time - shit version
Advent - good version
Christmas-epiphany - shit version
back to ordinary time, so shit version
lent - proper version
easter-trinity - shit version
back to ordinary time, which is shit version

so that's 4 shit versions vs 2 proper versions.
no matter how he tried to organise the year, the shit version is more often used.
and the shit version during the Christmas season?! which includes Midnight Mass? so all these people who only come once a year will go "eh? hang on a minute, what's this crap? never heard of it! they've changed the words!" (exactly the reason why we went to the A&M hymnbooks for Christmas and easter because the words are correct as most people know them)
so, we get lent and advent as traditional, and nothing else.

so, I'm now stuck in this huge dilemma, which whatever happens I lose.
He's adamant that because he's the vicar, he gets to choose (his words were "do I listen to a single loud voice and do what they want, or do I decide what I think is best for the church" (without actually having asked anyone in the church, BTW, he admitted last time that he should have done confused))
so, my lose-lose is I stay and do as I'm told, and every single time I hear that Lord's Prayer, it reminds me of this and makes me sad, makes my blood boil and makes me feel odd, left-out, unheard, different, obstructive, loud, arsey, demanding and just plain not enjoying the prayer. Even if he chooses the proper version, it will remind me of this argument every single time I hear it, which means that it's totally ruined the entire premise of my faith. (how the hell can the prayer be reconcilitary if it reminds me of a huge argument about its very existance?)
if he doesn't change it (which I'm pretty sure he won't, because apparently it's a principle thing now), then I want to leave.
if I leave, then no matter which church I go to, I'm a stranger, starting from the beginning and, oh, yeah, reminded of this argument every single time I recite the Lord's Prayer. I would lose PCC, the Choir, the Junior Choir, church with my family (DD would go with me, but DH can hardly leave can he!), all my friends and church family and basically everything.
but if I stay, I'm not "beign grown-up" because I will never, ever be able to get this one out of my head.
It would be fine if I were the kind of person that can let things drop, but my head is like a rottweiler with a juicy leg, it will not let it go once it's got hold. Even if I try to.
so, I lose. Modern and progressionist and "the boss" wins. Power over tradition.every time.

He also said that he thinks people should stop acting like they can shop around for church - like he thinks that choice is a bad thing.
I keep saying that most people think that this town doesn't offer tradition in the real sense, and so people go to other towns for their traditional service - we're the only church left that offers tradition and organ and choir in a proper sung/choral principle service on a sunday.
no other church in the town offers that as their main service (even HT who offer a traditional communion have it at 9o'clock and although it's organ, I don't think it's choir)(and I assume screens and hymnbooks)

I'm fed up.
The only way round this I can see is never to go to church again.

The worst thing is, I can't even just hold out until after christmas, because it's tainted everything from here on in.
and the shit version will be used in the Christmas service! the ** Christmas Service! Midnight Mass!!
One of my favourite services of the year, and I won't even be able to enjoy it. sad angry

niminypiminy Mon 16-Dec-13 17:30:57

Nickel, I know this is a big issue for you, and I'm really sad that it's come to symbolise what your faith means to you, and sorry that it's such a source of conflict for you with the vicar.

On one level what being the vicar means is that he is responsible for worship: even though he's part of a team, ultimately he is leading it. The other thing is that he may not have told you about all the things he has already compromised on -- probably he made a lot of those compromises before he even walked in the door of your church, and certainly he's made a lot since. And some of those undoubtedly have to do with the traditions of your church.

There are many, many versions of the Lord's prayer in different denominations and languages, and all of them interpret slightly differently the words of the prayer. But none of them are shit, because (whether we prefer them or not) they represent an honest attempt to help us say, and come close to, the words that Jesus told us we should use to pray. Whether we say sins or debts or trespasses, or any of the other differences, none of them is rubbish.

Perhaps this is a challenge for you to grow spiritually -- to learn to worship through something that doesn't feel 'right' to you? I spent five years worshipping in an evangelical church which often grated or left me cold, and at worst felt cringeworthy. But I also encountered God there through other people, and I learned a lot through being there.

i'm just fed up of all the changes.

if he wants modern Lord's Prayer, he can have it at St Mary's - I bet they don't have to alternate between the traditional and the modern.

It annoys me more though that he seems to think I'm the only person who actually objects to this modern version being used. It's just that I'm the only person telling him about it.

The last time he put the modern version in, I told him about it - he knew exactly how we felt about it - why put it in again so soon?
especially for Christmas?!

Why open up such a recent wound, when it's not even properly healed over?

Why say "oh, I like the tradition, look, I'm wearing the pretty robes and everything!" and then say "well, I want to say the new words and I don't care what anyone else thinks!"

Why couldn't he just stick with having the modern version during Ordinary Time, which lets face it, does take up rather a lot of the church year (it's all the way after Epiphany to Lent, and all of the Trinities until Advent)?

I would have sooner had the modern version at advent than have it at Christmas!

And I have put up with crap in worship before - the church I was at when I first joined a choir was led by a progressionist woman vicar (but oh so glad I'm not there now, it's totally unrecognisable in its modernity!), and I didn't like the style, but I accepted it because that's just what you have to do to get along.
and the last incumbent here, you all know all about. I mean! he hated tradition so much that he wanted to personally rip out the organ, thought he was the most important person in the world and never listened to anybody! but he still managed to use the traditional version every week!

DH keeps saying that at least in our old service book, both versions were there, so the priest could decide on the day which one s/he wanted to use (i suppose you can gauge it by audience...). the whole point of the new service booklets was that the service would become less complicated and easier to follow.
Instead it's just made me wish he'd never come to the church.

you know, it's not even "all the changes" - all the other changes I can deal with, I have dealt with, I am perfectly happy to go along with.

It's because it's an issue that's why it's a problem.
I honestly thought he'd taken what I said on board, and had decided just to do the Ordinary Time with that version.
I thought "well, I don't like that version, but I'm not the only one who prefers the traditional version, and we can all say it properly in the stalls together during ordinary time and then he'll do the proper version during the themed sections of the year"
I didn't like it, because again, going against the grain and "misbehaving", but at least not being alone in my thoughts/preference.

But he's not taken it on board at all.
after the last time, he said that he should have asked people what they thought about the versions.
he hasn't asked anyone which they prefer. he hasn't discussed it with anyone (well, he has probably discussed it with NVW, but she prefers modern anyway, so she's not going to encourage him to go with the traditional version, is she!)
The point is that he hasn't asked the core congregation or the choir or the organists which version they prefer to use
no point trying to get new people into the church if the ones that are there are disgruntled.
and he totally dismissed the opinions of the Juniors/young people in the choir, when I reiterated that he wanted the modern version because "the children these days learn that one", by saying "what, all three of them" with a nasty sneer.

Oh dear. I was brought up on the new version of the LP and it was a bit of a shock to arrive at a church which uses BCP at the 8am service so it is all traditional language and KJV for the readings. I've learnt to do it but it isn't where I feel comfortable.

As someone who prays the new version of the LP daily and sometimes several times a day it isn't shit. It sounds like it is the change that is the problem and as nimmy says this has become the issue to take a stand on.

If you only have three children in the church then this is a huge issue which I suspect your vicar is having to think through. As he is tasked with preaching the gospel afresh in each generation then holding onto what the church community holds dear is going to be a point of tension. I hope you can find a way to work with him. What worked really well at one service I used to go to was that at the LP we were invited to say it in the language or version we were most familiar with. So the priest would be saying it in German and there would be latin, BCP, African languages, Russian, etc and It sounded stunning. What it also did was demonstrate that we are all beloved children on God praying in the way that we can but loving and worshipping the same God.

I did tell him about that "whichever language or version is closest to your heart" but he didn't take that on board.

No one is interested in "bringing children in" to St Michael's - all the family and children-oriented services are done at St Mary's. That's been the case for many years (even before NV came)
The point of the 3 children in the church is that they're all in the choir (well, one of them is 18 now, so not a child anymore!). they all chose to be in a traditional choir in a traditional church.
They're committed to the church and turn up twice a week for it (as we all do), but their view is not important? I think that's grossly unfair on them and on all of the choir and the majority of the congregation.

I had the impression that we were suppsoed to be working on using our strengths to get people into the church - our strengths being the traditional offering with organ and choir.

In my sleepless night last night, I posted on our local gossip board asking which version of the Lord's Prayer people prefer. These are mostly people who hardly ever go to church, probably going just this once at Christmas, and might turn up at Easter or Palm sunday, too. These are the ones we're aiming for to come into the church (and hopefully come again)
I put my question neutrally, I didn't indicate which one I prefered, and I typed out the words for both in case people weren't sure which was which.
Most of the people who have replied so far have said traditiona.
It's a closed group so I hope you can open the link
Apparently, 30 people have replied: one person said they prefer the traditional but think that the modern one has its place these days, one person replied that they didn't think it was necessary to change the words and that the old version should be taught in schools and the reasons and words explained as historical interest. all of the others basically just replied with "traditional" (apart from one who remembers the BCP version from childhood - that lady brought her whole family to our very traditional Advent service - she has a 1 yo and a 3yo)

there are actually 6 regular children in attendance (now having discounted the 18yo as an adult)
my own DD, the 2 Junior Choristers (acutally, what am I saying! we've got 3 Junior Choristers! it's just that the 3rd, the newest hasn't been able to come to church during December because of other commitments)

let me start again ....
there are actually 7 regular children in attendance:
my own DD, the 3 Junior Choristers (including the new one), and 3 other children of pre-school age brought every week by their mum, who has been told about St Mary's services before, and prefers our traditional service.

So there are plenty of people who want their children to have a traditional service. It's not bad when you consider that the adult congregation numbers about 50.

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