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Have a go at the Church Times caption competition, and read the previous winner and top entries

29 March 2019

Ian Newton

Have a go at our next caption competition (above) and win a prize of Fairtrade chocolate!

Email your entries to: captioncompetition@churchtimes.co.uk

or send by post (postcards only) to:

Caption Competition
Church Times
108-114 Golden Lane

London EC1Y 0TG

Entries must be received by Friday 8 March.

Here is this week’s winner:


The congregation had their water pistols at the ready for when the invitation came ‘letuspray’

Sue Chick


WHAT are a bunch of clowns doing in church — and what are they singing?

  • Clown him with many clowns (Mervyn Cox, Derek Wellman et al.)
  • We sing the next hymn, ‘Crown him with many clowns’ (Stephen Cooke)
  • We shall now sing our festival hymn, ‘Clown him with many clowns’ (Daphne Foster)
  • The service sheet had said ‘Crown him with many clowns’: perhaps this would shame the parish secretary into greater accuracy (Ray Morris)
  • That well-known harvest anthem ‘Thou clownest the year with thy goodness’ (Richard Barnes)
  • The annual feast day of the Red Nose was celebrated with a special edition of Songs of Praise, at which the congregation sang ‘And did nose feet in ancient time’ and ‘Nobody nose the trouble I’ve seen’ (John Radford)
  • Send in the Clowns (Janet Wattleworth)
  • Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right, here I am stuck in the aisle with you (Chris Coupe)
  • Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right, here I am stuck in the middle with ‘You . . . shall go out with joy and be led forth with peace’ (Philip Ritchie)


It takes some effort to draw political captions from such a picture, but then we do live in unusual times:

  • Thank goodness there will be no more of these after Brexit (John Kimberley)
  • The ERG showed their true colours at last (Peter M. Potter)
  • Chris Grayling finds his true vocation (Ian Barge)
  • ‘Send in the Clowns’ seemed such an obvious choice as the anthem for the UKIP party conference. No one could work out why they hadn’t thought of it before (Brett Ward)
  • Now here’s a joyfully united front bench (Lesley Cope)
  • The nose have it. The nose have it (Richard Strudwick)
  • The General Synod’s Brexit subcommittee decides it needs to express its appreciation of the Government’s efforts with an appropriate level of seriousness (Dru Brooke-Taylor).


Less Brexit-minded readers turned attention to the C of E’s own elected representatives:

  • Pictures emerge from an evening worship session at the February meeting of the General Synod (Laurence John)
  • General Synod, please note: even this motley crew can sing from the same hymn sheet (John Saxbee)
  • The General Synod was definitely becoming less formal (Michael Foster).


Some other entries that amused us:

  • It was clear from their outfits that next year’s choir would have have some very big shoes to fill (Phil Lickley)
  • Meanwhile, at the Archdeacon’s ‘annual conference. . .’ (Andrew Greenhough)
  • When they said we’d all be singing from the same hymn sheet, I didn’t expect this (Robert Shooter)
  • Nobody would guess that we are all members of the Prayer Book Society (Patrick Irwin)
  • The clowns’ colourful and exaggerated outfits were matched by some equally outlandish and ‘offbeat’ singing (Alison Parry)
  • The finance committee donned their official robes for the service (Eric Lishman)
  • Even the clowns couldn’t raise a smile for that hymn (Valerie Budd)
  • It must be difficult to get this church’s PCC to discuss serious business (Richard Hough)
  • You should see what they’re wearing in the sanctuary (Robert Ashdown)
  • Some clown had flung wide the gates (Bridget Swan)
  • Auditions for The Greatest Showman sequel prove popular for clergy who clown about (Clive Deverell)
  • The clowns weren’t scary — but their singing certainly was (Mark Parry)
  • The delegates cheered when they heard that cocoa would be served after the service (Marcus Booth)
  • Noses are red, Fingertips are blue, The heating broke down: They all sneeze ‘Atishoo!’ (Alison Rollin).

As ever, the winner receives Fairtrade chocolate, courtesy of Divine Chocolate: www.divinechocolate.com.


Thu 18 Aug @ 02:45
“It will affect food prices, and things like Christmas greens will be in short supply.” https://t.co/Xa6Cktexvs

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