THIS was two caption competitions in a row which have involved dressing up in church, a point not missed by Chris Coupe: “Still, it’s got more street cred than being dressed as an orange.”
A recent meeting of the Primates did not escape our readers’ notice (NB all references to GAFCON and the Primates stem from a deep respect, naturally): “Star Wars Episode VIII: GAFCON strikes back” (Alexander Faludy); “The Primate of the Dagobah System left the ‘Gathering’ slightly sceptical he could make the 12-parsec journey home and back again before Lambeth 2020” (Andrew Greenhough); “Even Justin Welby couldn’t prevent these two from walking out” (John Saxbee); “Darth turned up for the Primates’ meeting acutely embarrassed. He had misread the blurb. What it actually said was ‘May the Farce be with you’” (David Hill); and two from Richard Barnes: “You think I’m scary; wait till the GAFCON stormtroopers arrive” and “In a Province far, far away, there’s a communiqué to say that nobody is gay and the women all obey.”
Concerning liturgy: “No, Luke, I told you, it isn’t ‘Darth Vader who art in heaven’” (Sue Chick); “ V. The Force be with you. R. And also with you” (Richard Hough); and “The revision to the liturgy for the installation of a bishop had unintended consequences” (Peter Chapman). And hymnody: “Force, in thy name, O Lord, we go” (John Saxbee). And hermeneutics: “‘The people who walked on the dark side have seen a great light’ (Isaiah 9.2 — nearly)” (David McEvoy).
Shaun Clarkson has been following the debate on our letters pages: “Although the Bishop reminded them: ‘The Church of England does not attach any particular doctrinal significance to the diversities of vesture,’ his current choice didn’t go down well at St Luke’s” (Shaun Clarkson). We also had: “Youth appeal plus a neat expression of his role: the archdeacon’s new vestments were a triumph” (Derwyn Wiliams).
Talking of archdeacons: “No one had met the new archdeacon; so they weren’t sure whether it was him or an impostor” (John Radford); and “At last, the archdeacon revealed his true face” (Andrew Barton).
A few random entries: “Somehow, I’m not sure my grandson will turn out well” (Bridget Swan); “We are pleased to welcome Varder Roger as our guest preacher for the Week of Prayer for Intergalactic Unity” (Richard Hough); “St Arwars is a lesser-known saint, but in this church he is celebrated regularly’’ (Peter Walker); “With Lent on the horizon, Bruce thought he had found a way to stop himself eating chocolate biscuits with his coffee” (Sue Chick); and “I am now going to force my sermon on you” (Brian Simmons).
Also: “Sunday Schools forced to register with OFSTED over radicalisation fears” (Jonnie Parkin); “It is, of course, always possible to take the warnings of the danger of inhaling incense smoke a little too seriously” (Bill Scott); “The Revd Walker, being a high-churchman, delighted in reminding the congregation at St Luke’s: ‘I am your Father’” (Andrew Greenhough); “Of course it’s not too heavy: it’s a light sabre” (Tom Page); “One elderly member of the congregation wondered if it had anything to do with The Phantom of the Opera” (Richard Hough); and “The bishop had told him never to show his face in the diocese again” (John Appleby).
Among our favourites: “Glad tidings we bring, to you Anakin. . .” (Jonnie Parkin); “No amount of coercion could persuade the eight-o’clockers to exchange the Peace” (David Hill); and “In a diocese far, far away, Reform and Renewal takes shape” (Richard Barnes).
We could not decide between two entries, and since our prize is Fairtrade chocolate, courtesy of Divine (www.divinechocolate.com), it seemed only fair to send something to both of them.