THE MESSAGE that laughter is good for the soul is coming from various parts of the Church of England this Lent. The first daily text message from the C of E’s national “Love Life, Live Lent” campaign (News, 26 January) suggested: “Make someone laugh”. The website asked people to share their favourite “good, clean” joke.
In Birmingham, a comedy club, The Laughing Sole, is offering an alternative to “coarse humour” in the form of an evening of more reflective comedy. Its founder, Helen Tomblin, said that she believed there was a gap in the market for a comedy club with a cleaner ethos. “If you cut out the swearing and crude material, you actually get a higher standard of comedy.”
Congregations may hear better jokes in sermons this Lent. During the Leicester Comedy Festival last week, Leicester Cathedral hosted a workshop devised by Andy Kind, a comedian from Stoke, for the clergy and other public speakers.
Moderation, if not abstinence
The Roman Catholic bishops of Ireland in a new pastoral letter, Alcohol: The challenge of moderation, suggest that the faithful might reduce their alcohol consumption by one third, and assess the difference this makes after three months.
"Hello, Bishop - any chance of an increase in my stipend? Catoon: Noel Ford