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Source: (consider it) Thread: Non-religious music at St Sepulchre's
BroJames
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quote:
Originally posted by Higgs Bosun:
<snip>I would think that a mere 50 years ago very many Church of England parishes would have had something like 8am Communion, 11am Mattins and 6.30pm Evensong as the standard fare.

Yes that's true, but the Canons don't require HC to be the principal service, just that it be celebrated.
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Bishops Finger
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And on every day for which Collect, Epistle, and Gospel are provided in the BCP, I think, with a sermon. Cranmer intended Holy Communion to be the principal service, but it didn't work out that way, the English having been used to attendance, but not communicating, at Mass for several preceding centuries.

BTW, I observe that quite a few of the churches in our Deanery have at least Morning Prayer each day. Evening Prayer seems less common, presumably because of demands on clergy time (our former p-in-c said Morning Prayer publicly in church, but Evening Prayer privately at home, some miles distant).

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Higgs Bosun
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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
And on every day for which Collect, Epistle, and Gospel are provided in the BCP, I think, with a sermon. Cranmer intended Holy Communion to be the principal service, but it didn't work out that way, the English having been used to attendance, but not communicating, at Mass for several preceding centuries.

This is an interesting comment. Do you have a reference for this?

My recollection from my childhood is that when attending a Communion service, it was always a struggle to find the pages for "The Order for the Administration of the Lord's Supper or Holy Communion", partly, I suppose, because they were not well-thumbed, but mainly because they were not near the beginning, unlike the pages for Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer. Maybe this was for 1662 , and the ordering of the services in 1549 was different.

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Basilica
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quote:
Originally posted by Higgs Bosun:
quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
And on every day for which Collect, Epistle, and Gospel are provided in the BCP, I think, with a sermon. Cranmer intended Holy Communion to be the principal service, but it didn't work out that way, the English having been used to attendance, but not communicating, at Mass for several preceding centuries.

This is an interesting comment. Do you have a reference for this?

My recollection from my childhood is that when attending a Communion service, it was always a struggle to find the pages for "The Order for the Administration of the Lord's Supper or Holy Communion", partly, I suppose, because they were not well-thumbed, but mainly because they were not near the beginning, unlike the pages for Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer. Maybe this was for 1662 , and the ordering of the services in 1549 was different.

I've always been told that Holy Communion is in the middle of the BCP as it's easier to keep the book open at the correct page in the middle of the book. Common Worship is the same, except no one ever actually use any of the CW books in an act of worship.
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Enoch
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quote:
Originally posted by Basilica:
I've always been told that Holy Communion is in the middle of the BCP as it's easier to keep the book open at the correct page in the middle of the book. Common Worship is the same, except no one ever actually use any of the CW books in an act of worship.

Must admit I've never heard that one. Sounds a bit unlikely to me. It doesn't strike me as fitting the sort of way people thought about things in the 1660s.

Sounds more like wishful excuse-making.

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Angloid
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Whether or not Holy Communion was in the middle of the book for that reason, it's clear from the fact that the sermon is ordered to be preached then, and that Banns of marriage are to be announced, that this was intended to be the principal service. In fact as far as I know it always was, except that the prohibition on any celebration where there were not the sufficient number of communicants (three or four?) meant that the liturgy was normally cut short after the Prayer for the Church Militant.
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Bishops Finger
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@Higgs Bosun, the best book I've read concerning the impact of the Reformation on the Church in England is Eamon Duffy's The Stripping of the Altars - highly recommended.

I don't have a 1549 Prayer Book to hand (!), so I can't quote the rubrics, but I think the clue as to the importance of The Lord's Supper in Cranmer's mind is that it is the only service at which a sermon or homily is mandatory.

OTOH, The Shorter Prayer Book of 1946 (a neat little volume, and quite user-friendly) places the Communion service after Morning/Evening Prayer and the Litany, and refers, after the Creed, to 'The Sermon (if there be one)'. Presumably this is because in 1946 many churches had only a said Communion at 8am, or perhaps once a month at 12 noon, or 730pm, i.e. after Mattins or Evensong.

IJ

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Bishops Finger
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Cross-posted with Angloid, but I seem to recall that 1662 required three, or at least two, persons to communicate along with the priest.

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Bishops Finger
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Sorry to triple-post, but I've just looked in my presentation edition of the BCP published during the brief reign of King Edward VIII (i.e. 1936), and the rubric at the end of the Communion service reads ' And there shall be no celebration of the Lord's Supper, except there be a convenient number to communicate with the Priest, according to his discretion.'

IJ

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Enoch
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Until the middle to late C19, the normal Sunday morning service in the CofE was Morning Prayer, followed by Litany, followed by Antecommunion, except on a Communion Sunday, when the service went through to complete Holy Communion. I have an C18 BCP in which Morning Prayer, Evening Prayer and Holy Communion up to the Nicene Creed are in large print, and everything after that is in smaller print.

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L'organist
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As late as 1981 there was a church in St Albans diocese where this happened on the first Sunday of the month. Full Choral Matins at 11, followed by the Litany, then the full BCP communion service.

They did have a Series II Parish Communion at 9am for those without the stamina for the full deal.

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Rara temporum felicitate ubi sentire quae velis et quae sentias dicere licet

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Bishops Finger
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Presumably the 11am full-on service Ceased To Be on account of the deaths (from exhaustion, or perhaps boredom) of the remnant of the faithful.

If it was full Matins as per The Book, they'd have been thanking God for having 'safely brought [them] to the beginning of this day' just before noon, which may be another clue to Cranmer's idea that Matins should properly be the first service of the day.

IJ

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leo
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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
they'd have been thanking God for having 'safely brought [them] to the beginning of this day' just before noon IJ

We used to alter that to read 'who hast brought us thus far today'.

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Bishops Finger
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Excellent idea! I'm slightly surprised that such a sensible modification was never made 'official'.

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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L'organist
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There was meant to be a PCC meeting at St Sepulchre's on the 15th (I think) to be attended by Bishop Pete with the stated intentions of (a) finding out what was going on, and (b) sorting it out.

Since then, silence. No regular musical event people have heard a peep.

Come on, Pete: what are you going to do. This is not something that can be left until the see vacancy is filled.

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Baptist Trainfan
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Nothing on St. Sepulchre's website etc. to be sure. Just that they're having a night of prayer tonight: "We will be worshipping & praying from sunset Sept 22 to sunrise Sept 23 2017 at St. Sepulchre’s".
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Helen-Eva
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quote:
Originally posted by Baptist Trainfan:
Nothing on St. Sepulchre's website etc. to be sure. Just that they're having a night of prayer tonight: "We will be worshipping & praying from sunset Sept 22 to sunrise Sept 23 2017 at St. Sepulchre’s".

Are they celebrating the autumn equinox? Sounds kinda pagan... [Devil]

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by L'organist:
There was meant to be a PCC meeting at St Sepulchre's on the 15th (I think) to be attended by Bishop Pete with the stated intentions of (a) finding out what was going on, and (b) sorting it out.

It's not uncommon for the result of that kind of meeting to be (c) we need another meeting.
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pete173
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PCC meeting is this coming Sunday. Don't believe the gossip factory.

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Pete

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Bishops Finger
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The outcome of that meeting (if it is released into the public domain) will make interesting reading, so far as the subject of this thread is concerned.

ISTM that further comment and speculation are, in the meantime, unnecessary.

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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L'organist
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The silence isn't good.

And the new(ish) regime at St Sepulchre's missed a golden opportunity to display some goodwill: all they had to do was reinstate the (formerly) annual memorial service for Sir Henry Wood and all London orchestral musicians who have died during the year. This used to take place on the Sunday after the last night of the Proms but was stopped when the HTB people moved in.

It was a good service: the wreath which is placed on the bust of Henry Wood before the last concert starts was always taken to place by his memorial plaque in St Sepulchre's. It was a non-denominational service which used to get a very respectable crowd. Now held in another church but I know the promenaders would dearly love to get back into the church where Sir Henry is memorialised and his ashes are interred.

Again, over to you Pete.

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Rara temporum felicitate ubi sentire quae velis et quae sentias dicere licet

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Bishops Finger
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Blimey, the PCC meeting was only yesterday!

Give the poor Secretary a chance to write up his/her notes...

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Baptist Trainfan
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Surely the best Minutes are those written before the meeting takes place? [Devil]
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Bishops Finger
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Aha! It is as I suspected - Baptist Trainfan is (secretly) or has been (in the past) an Anglican!

[Eek!]

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Baptist Trainfan
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As it happens, I was brought up in the CofE before I saw the light and joined the One True Church (at around the age of 18).

Surely though you ought to have conjectured as to whether I had ever been a minute-taker in the Civil Service - which I have not.

[ 25. September 2017, 13:12: Message edited by: Baptist Trainfan ]

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Bishops Finger
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Well, I did wonder about the Civil Service (or perhaps local government), but forebore to be insulting! (And is there a reference to Yes, Minister somewhere? Sounds like a Bernardism...).

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Baptist Trainfan
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Not consciously Sir Bernard, but this rings true: Sir Humphrey: "It is characteristic of all committee discussions and decisions that every member has a vivid recollection of them and that every member’s recollection of them differs violently from every other member’s recollection. Consequently, we accept the convention that the official decisions are those and only those which have been officially recorded in the minutes by the officials, from which it emerges with an elegant inevitability that any decision which has been officially reached will have been officially recorded in the minutes by the officials and any decision which is not recorded in the minutes has not been officially reached even if one or more members believe they can recollect it, so in this particular case, if the decision had been officially reached it would have been officially recorded in the minutes by the officials, and it isn’t so it wasn’t". Sounds like Diocesan Synod, or Baptist Church Meetings.

[ 25. September 2017, 13:37: Message edited by: Baptist Trainfan ]

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Bishops Finger
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[Killing me]

Indeed it does! And I can just see the look of bewilderment on poor Jim Hacker's face....

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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leo
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quote:
Originally posted by L'organist:
The silence isn't good.

And the new(ish) regime at St Sepulchre's missed a golden opportunity to display some goodwill: all they had to do was reinstate the (formerly) annual memorial service for Sir Henry Wood and all London orchestral musicians who have died during the year. This used to take place on the Sunday after the last night of the Proms but was stopped when the HTB people moved in.

It was a good service: the wreath which is placed on the bust of Henry Wood before the last concert starts was always taken to place by his memorial plaque in St Sepulchre's. It was a non-denominational service which used to get a very respectable crowd. Now held in another church but I know the promenaders would dearly love to get back into the church where Sir Henry is memorialised and his ashes are interred.

Again, over to you Pete.

I thought that evos. would jump at the chance of doing an altar call at such a well-attended event

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My reviews at http://layreadersbookreviews.wordpress.com

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Bishops Finger
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Hmm. Depends whether it's God who is being worshipped, or Sir Henry...

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Helen-Eva
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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
Hmm. Depends whether it's God who is being worshipped, or Sir Henry...

IJ

I went to that service one year - I don't remember Sir Henry getting much attention and it was more like those annual services that a lot of parishes do to remember all the people from the church who died that year. I went to remember a particular musician who mattered a lot to me and it was a lovely thing to have done. I'm so sorry to hear it's been stopped.

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I thought the radio 3 announcer said "Weber" but it turned out to be Webern. Story of my life.

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Bishops Finger
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Fair comment, and point taken.

It may well be, and one can only hope and pray, that some positive 're-balancing' will take place at St. Sepulchre's as a result of current deliberations.

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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L'organist
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Well they'd better get their act together quickly because the groups who're being pushed out are looking at the possibility of legal action of some sort...

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Rara temporum felicitate ubi sentire quae velis et quae sentias dicere licet

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Bishops Finger
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...in which case the only people to benefit will be the lawyers.

[Disappointed]

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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ExclamationMark
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quote:
Originally posted by L'organist:
Well they'd better get their act together quickly because the groups who're being pushed out are looking at the possibility of legal action of some sort...

What on earth will that achieve?
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Bishops Finger
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As I hinted above, £££ for the lawyers, and possibly opprobrious epithets directed towards both sides, along with some juicy church-bashing fodder for the gutter press.

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Helen-Eva
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I see that Bishop Pete has put out a statement here. It looks like a good Anglican compromise me to (and I mean that sincerely not sarcastically) but I've only scanned it not thought about it in depth.

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I thought the radio 3 announcer said "Weber" but it turned out to be Webern. Story of my life.

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Higgs Bosun
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Also, the rector has issued a statement.

(The interesting thing to me in this statement is that they have "re-started Sunday services after a gap of more than 30 years.")

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Baptist Trainfan
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To me, as an outsider reading the statements, it appears as if +Pete has (a) had a good go at the PCC for what they did; and is (b) doing some excellent and creative attempts to undo any harm that's been done. I like his emphasis on the importance of the place which Anglican churches have in the community.

Of course it would be quite improper for him to confirm or deny this on the Ship!

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ExclamationMark
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No winners in this one.

Let's hope that the church which has restarted Sunday services after such a long gap(!) engages with its community both musicians and otherwise. Let's pray that the musicians and others who use the church do so recognising its place in history as well as in faith.

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Bishops Finger
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St. Sepulchre's is not the only City of London church to have had no Sunday services for many years, given the small size of the local resident population, but many of the churches do host other denominations on a Sunday morning.

ISTM that, as others have remarked, the Bishop and the PCC have had a robust re-think, so let's hope the future for St. Sepulchre's continues to see the growth in mission and outreach that should always be the aim of any church.

+Pete's announcement of the new musicians & churches website in a month or so is an interesting and positive development. Maybe other dioceses could learn from this idea?

IJ

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Albertus
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quote:
Originally posted by Baptist Trainfan:
To me, as an outsider reading the statements, it appears as if +Pete has (a) had a good go at the PCC for what they did...

Yes indeed:
quote:
I am grateful to the Rector and PCC of St Sepulchre for being willing to engage with me and other diocesan colleagues about their decision. In that engagement I have repeated and re-inforced the role the Church of England plays in the communities it serves. The Church of England is called to be a welcoming, inclusive, and engaging church. I have re-emphasised the importance of this to all those at St Sepulchre
I do not think it requires too much imagination to be able to guess the tone of the 'engagement' that lay behind the second and fourth sentences there. They suggest to me what I believe is called in the Civil Service a 'meeting without coffee' (if such a thing can be imagined in any - no-Adventist, anyway- church [Biased] . )

[ 28. September 2017, 22:25: Message edited by: Albertus ]

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Baptist Trainfan
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quote:
Originally posted by Albertus:
They suggest to me what I believe is called in the Civil Service a 'meeting without coffee'

[Killing me]
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ThunderBunk

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Given their other plans this is sheer sanctimonious hypocrisy. They are a cult answerable to no one and nothing but their own ego.

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Higgs Bosun
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quote:
Originally posted by ThunderBunk:
Given their other plans this is sheer sanctimonious hypocrisy. They are a cult answerable to no one and nothing but their own ego.

Just like so many others of different hues in the C of E. Parishes do have significant autonomy. In addition, a parish is a charity, and the PCC members are the trustees, and so responsible for ensuring that the charity meets its charitable objectives. Is the provision of a venue for rehearsal or concerts (on a commercial basis) one of those objectives?

Is it really so bad to have a church building holding Christian events rather than mainly acting as a music venue?

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L'organist
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posted by Thunderbunk
quote:
Given their other plans this is sheer sanctimonious hypocrisy. They are a cult answerable to no one and nothing but their own ego.
Yes, I'm afraid that is my reading.

In any case, regardless of whether or not +Pete is to be commended for achieving a compromise (and I think that is highly questionable), the fact remains that HTB were allowed to take over a church on the strict understanding that its role as the London musician's church and home of the national Musicians' Chapel be preserved and allowing them to break this means that in future any such promises or undertakings given can be viewed as entirely optional and non-binding.

The stuff about encouraging music in other London churches is just so much flannel: it is happening anyway - and in any case, given what has happened at St Sepulchre's, who is to say this pattern won't be repeated.

The statement by David Ingall is breathtaking in its hypocrisy and is nothing more than window-dressing. The proof of the attitude towards music of him and his HTB coven is on their own website: there are NO concerts or musical events listed after the end of November this year. Bearing in mind the lead-time for arranging such things it is pretty certain that will remain the case for most, if not all, of 2018. Or perhaps he thinks that people will be drawn by a lunchtime "praise" event featuring worship songs?

The statement and "compromise" reached is a massive climbdown on the part of the Diocese, the stand-in bishop and the Archdeacon (who if he wasn't involved should have been) and amounts to nothing less than an endorsement of the bullying tactics exerted by the planting church and its sponsors.

[ 29. September 2017, 12:34: Message edited by: L'organist ]

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Bishops Finger
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Those are serious allegations, l'Organist. Are you perhaps one of those reported to be contemplating legal action of some sort?

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Helen-Eva
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quote:
Originally posted by Higgs Bosun:
In addition, a parish is a charity, and the PCC members are the trustees, and so responsible for ensuring that the charity meets its charitable objectives. Is the provision of a venue for rehearsal or concerts (on a commercial basis) one of those objectives?

Based on what l'Organist says, I guess it is. Or at least being the Musician's church etc is an explicit objective of that particular church according to the diocese of London.

[ 29. September 2017, 15:18: Message edited by: Helen-Eva ]

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Enoch
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What I also find quite disturbing, is that the two accounts already linked above, and this one from the Church Times also apparently written since the same meeting, is that if they didn't all refer to the same place, one would not believe they were talking about the same story. The Church Times one is behind a pay wall, but you should be able to get a limited number of free views per month.

Knowing the way even the most respectable journalists, yet alone the Church Times (!!) find the temptation irresistible to gross up the drama of a story because cantankerous contention is so much more newsworthy - fun, even - than boring fact, I'm inclined to give the Church Times version the least credence of the three.


As an aside, if there haven't been regular Sunday services for 30 years, it's a bit difficult to conclude that St Sepulchre's mission to the musical community has been having much effect.

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Leorning Cniht
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quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:

As an aside, if there haven't been regular Sunday services for 30 years, it's a bit difficult to conclude that St Sepulchre's mission to the musical community has been having much effect.

How does this follow? I don't know St Sepulchre at all, but the City of London has a rather small resident population (less than 10,000), and a very much larger community of commuting workers (more than 300,000).

Those 300,000 people aren't there on Sundays.

The idea that one should only serve the 10,000 residents and not the 300,000 people who are there for long hours on weekdays is rather misguided to say the least.

So I conclude that the absence of Sunday service from a church in a community where 97% of the people aren't there on Sundays really doesn't tell you anything about the effectiveness or otherwise of the church's mission.

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