Thursday, June 14, 2007

German madness spreads to England (aka the Rhine flows into the Thames)

Hot on the heels of my previous post on the blasphemous and sacrilegious convention in Germany, comes this new affront. Here's the article taken from the BBC with my comments in blue. My language might not always be temperate, so be forewarned.

Half pipe leads to a full chapel
Tom Geilfus
Tom Geilfus rides the new ramp
A Methodist Chapel in Cornwall has come up with a novel way of broadening its appeal by building a skate ramp inside. (For me, this is another 'What the heck?' moment.)

The chapel at the surfing resort of Polzeath is hoping a younger generation of worshippers will get off the beach on Sunday mornings and into church. (Ok, they'll attract people to Church. Great. But to do what, actually? To worship God or to skate or to worship the skate gods? I bet if I locate a sale in the Church, I'll attract people too. But for what?)

Out has gone the pulpit and communion table and in has come a plywood-formed half-pipe at the Polzeath chapel, now renamed the Tubestation. (That certainly shows this 'church's' priorities. The places where the Word and the Bread are broken is replaced by a half pipe where bones are broken instead. So much for 'not a bone of his will be broken'.)

And it all has the blessing of the local Methodist Minister, Gareth Hill. (To Gareth, if you haven't been, then anathema sit.)

He said: "We had been looking at ways of speaking to the generation of skaters and surfers and we thought 'let's go for it'." (Again, speaking what actually? The atonement and redemption procured by Christ Jesus through His passion, death and resurrection? That's what people need to hear. It might not be what they want to hear but its what they need to hear. Telling people what they want to hear usually gains you lots of converts but results is lots of lost souls. People need to be told what they need to hear, that they are sinners in need to redemption and salvation and this is offered to them in Christ. Beware the false teachers!)

Gareth Hill
We are a very forward thinking congregation
Minister Gareth Hill

"The chapel has been changed in every sense and mainly because now we're full." (Yes, of course. In every sense. So, in what way then can the place be called a chapel, or to rephrase, a chapel to who, exactly? God or mammon or whatever the skate god is called? And yes, you're full. But full of what? Shyte? The bus station is full during rush hour. And the malls are full during the weekends. So what? Is the goal of the chapel to be full? Then one should open a cinema. Beware when taking the wide and straight gate.)

He said members of the church had backed the idea which includes an internet cafe and screens surf and skateboard videos. (You mean the members backed the idea of letting the 'church' cease and replacing it with something else? Great at recruiting members, aren't we, Gareth. People use to equate Church with worshipping God. Now, they'll equate it with surfing the net. Great job, good and faithful servant.)

"Those that are involved with the church have loved it," he said. (I'm sure giving people what they love is the surest way to Heaven. That's what Gareth's 'bible' teaches.)

"But then we are a very forward thinking congregation." (Yup. they are so forward, that they didn't realize that the who bunch of them just went off the cliff.)

On Sunday Christian skaters Jared Lee and Tom Geilfus from the US skated to a rock music backing and an enthusiastic audience at the morning service. (The new idols are enthroned where God use to sit. The glory has departed and the desolating presence has enthroned itself in God's temple. Good job, Gareth. Now if only the rest of your denomination joins you, then the 'churches' would be full for the first time in decades and even(gasp!) new 'churches' would have to be built.)

Mr Lee, of the Untitled skateboard team, said: "Churches are needing to reach out to a new generation. (Yup. And God knows the best way to 'reach out' is to forego the Gospel and just enjoy life and skate. Fools.)

"This is what God wants, to be relevant." (This is in the Book of Lee, chapter 3, verse 16 when God spoke to the prophet Gareth.)

Mr Geilfus said: "Skateboarding goes hand in hand with faith. (Wow! Didn't see that one coming. How in the world did he come up with that one? Perhaps skateboarders do have faith in God, or at least faith that broken bones will heal and repeated bumps on the head causes no mental retardation and faith that their medical insurance covers stupidity as the primary cause of injury. In that case, they have great faith indeed.)

The chapel overlooks one of Cornwall's best known beaches

"When you step on a skateboard you are putting your trust in your skills. It's the same with faith when you step out you are putting your trust in God to tell you what to do." (When a certain person asked the Lord Jesus to do something dangerous, to trust in his skills and show off by jumping off the pinacle of the temple, He famously replied "Do not put the Lord your God to the test." Anyway, the voices that these people hear telling them to do all sorts of dangerous stunts might not be from God. It could just have been from the repeated bumps on the head.)

But for those with more traditional beliefs, skating, loud music and church do not mix. (Oh, that's what they are calling sane people these days, folks with 'traditional' beliefs. Ok. In that case, call me the most diehard traditionalist anytime.)

Visiting worshipper Joy Thorogood said: "I don't agree with it. (Ah...a traditionalist (aka not stark raving mad.)

"I don't think skateboarding is something you do in church. There are skate parks for that

"This is God's house, where he needs to be worshipped." (Wow, how traditional. And how sane. Gareth needs to go for a psychiatric evaluation if he can;t see this point. I guess they're right. Common sense ain't that common no more.)

Organisers admit there have been a few raised eyebrows, but, with attendances rocketing, the half pipe has brought about a full church. (Sigh... more people... but for what?)

The ramp was built with the help of a £1,240 grant from North Cornwall District Council, provided through a community fund for young people. (The govenrment is mad too? So, what's new?)
Now, I'm not totally against this concept. If people want to pray the rosary or organize a liturgy of the hours at a skate park, I'll be all for it. More power to them. Bringing the sacred to the people, that's what processions are for. But the reverse is ridiculous. These folks ought to have their heads checked.


Anonymous said...

It's a bit like the 'i very dare you' caption campaign by the Anglican Church. my kids always look confused about these 'modern' 'with it' posters...

John said...

Such is the curse of anglicanism :P

When I saw this in the Times I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. So I compromised and did both...

Anonymous said...

I'd like just to notice that Benedict XVI has removed Tiara from his coat of arms (there is mitre in original). The picture of coat of arms on the left side of your blog has tiara.
To be honest, I would rather pope had tiara in his coat.

tomt said...

Andrew, I wish you were a Bishop!

Are you considering a Vocation to the holy priesthood?

Andrew said...

Mrs Parkes, I totally agree. Young people are condescended to too much these days and are not challenged enough. These things really make young people laugh. I'm thinking of the vocation poster issued by the English bishops this year as an example.

John, I did neither. I just anathematized them. I felt much better afterwards =)

SyrianCatholic, I actually am considering a vocation to the priesthood. There are just some unresolved issues which are purely in God's hands, so I'll leave it up to Him to comment further =)

And finally, dear Anonymous. Even though the Pope's current coat of arms, designed by Andrea Cordero Lanza Cardinal di Montezemolo, Archpriest of the Basilica of St. Paul-Outside-the-Walls does not indeed incorporate the correct emblem of the Papal office which is the triple tiara which has been erroneously discarded here in favour of a mitre that still suggests the three crowns, it can and correctly, should be used. Innovations such as the inclusion of the pallium is a rather erroneus attempt at communicating ecclesiology in pictorial form which is not the function of armorial bearings and heraldry.

I'm attaching several links which show the tiara surmounting the Papal coat of arms. Here is the landscaping design of in front of the offices of the Vatican City Governorate.

Here is the papal arms on the banner of the Pontifical Swiss Guards.

And here's the papal arms on the Church of SSmo Nome di Maria al Foro Traiano in Rome.

So, the papal arms can be displayed with tiara and more correctly so. And wouldn't you agree that it looks much better that way? Haha... I hope the Pope is reading this.