Thursday, April 13, 2006

Falling off the back

In the run up to Easter, I have the entire weekend off, Friday and Monday included. So does partner. I don't know what we'll do but it will involve a lot of sleeping and veggifying. Maybe I'll do some writing. Or painting. Or housework. We were thinking of attending Good Friday service at the local church. Partner was baptised Church of England and was a regular churchgoer as a child, but neither of us really do church now, though I was thinking it might be nice to go once in a while. I like to sing and I like the rituals. With my new job I would have a chance to go to church every other week if I wanted. I've only been to a CofE service once, but it was pretty good I guess. I liked the guy in the dress and there was a nice choir and the stained glass windows were good. The only thing I didn't like was the lack of printed music in the hymnals; there was just words. I didn't know any of the tunes and I like to harmonize, but I need to read the music for that. Here in Britain you don't have to go to church because there is a kind of service played on tv every Sunday. So you can worship from your living room. With subtitles for all the hymns. No wonder there aren't many churchgoers these days: they all stay home and watch tv instead.

From what I know of CofE, it appeals to me. It's a very encompassing religion, and very benign. They don't have a rigid set of rules to follow, just some basic guidelines like don't murder anyone or covet asses. Their clergy are not celibate like the Catholics, and their head is a woman: the Queen of England. Their priests wear dresses. Even the men. Neat. Sign me up. And partner insists you don't have to believe in the Virgin Birth to join, although I'm not sure if that one's true. I like to go into churches, though, and listen to the silence and look at the architecture and meditate a little. I like it that churches are always open during the day for people who need them. I don't like it, however, that some of the big cathedrals here charge money for people who want to go in. Not during services, obviously, but during the week. I mean, I know the churches need the money, but I think tourists and parishioners alike put money in the collection box. There's no need to make it mandatory. It seems a bit sacrilegious, like something in the bible with the moneychangers in the temple.

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