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

04 August 2023

Andrew Bryan Norman

Have a go at our next caption competition (above)Send entries by email only to captioncompetition@churchtimes.co.uk by 9 a.m., Monday 14 August

Here is the winning entry for the previous competition:

Anne BrandAnne Brand

What does SDF funding mean to my diocese? Smashing and Destruction Fund! (Che Seabourne}


THE Bishop’s translation to Lincoln requires unexpected levels of effort:

“Start of new road from Ely to Lincoln: the Conway Motorway” (Michael Doe); “Stephen wore a hard hat for his JCB journey to Lincoln” (Jonathan Young); “The Bishop’s Move lorry was on its way from Ely to Lincoln, and Bishop Stephen was keeping his eye on it!” (Sue Chick); “Hopefully, from up here I can see the most direct route from Ely to Lincoln” (Daphne Foster); “Just caught a lift up to Lincoln” (Michael Turnbull); “The Bishop was determined to leave his mark on Ely before he moved to Lincoln” (Richard Hough).

Beware diocesan mission strategies that talk of building. . .

“‘That wasn’t the sort of church building I had in mind!’ Bishop Stephen said as he started his new job” (Sue Nelms); “I know my vocation is to build the Kingdom, but I can’t actually operate this digger” (David Wells); “I know they said the congregation would need lifting up, but this seems a bit much. . .” (Iain Grant); “He was determined to move heaven and earth to ensure the new church got built” (Kim Willing).

JCB takes on a whole new meaning when a bishop is in the driving seat:

“Bishop’s new mission strategy, involving his JCB (Jesus Christ’s Bulldozer), is going well, he thought” (Lesley Ennis); “Perhaps someone should tell him that JCB doesn’t mean Jesus Christ Blesses” (Alistair Bolt);I thought it stood for Jesus Christ’s Brigade” (Rob Falconer).

Some other entries that we enjoyed:

“Confusion reigned when the socials team told the clergy cat that photos were popular” (Philip Lickley); “The excavation of the total immersion baptismal pool was proving a challenge” (Brian Stevenson); “Did you say 90 or 100 cubits?” (Alison Woods); He was beginning to think a digger cab wasn’t really the place for quiet reflection” (Pearl Davison); The Bishop times how long ‘Nearer, my God, to thee’ actually takes” (Joan Workman); “Gosh, this sure beats the greasy pole” (John Saxbee); Seeking inspiration from on high while looking down at an ultra low mission zone?” (Ray Morris); “Demolish the temple and rebuild it in three days? No problem!” (John Appleby); “Look who is auditioning for a starring role in the new blockbuster movie adaptation of the Cbeebies programme Tractor Ted (Richard Spray); When I said I liked to sing ‘Nearer, my God, to thee’ I didn’t expect anyone to take it so seriously and send me up here to prove it” (Jeannie Chamberlain); “I’m finding this new high-tech pulpit both hilarious and terrifying” (Cathy Davies); His other hat is a better fit!” (Mary Talbott); “Like many a bishop before him, this one clearly enjoys being at least six feet above contradiction” (Richard Strudwick); “Because I am a Bishop they think they are in good hands, constantly on the controls; if only they could see me now!” (Eunice Owens); “Following his ‘We must rise to the heavens’ sermon, the Bishop was leading by example” (Mark Parry); At least the Archdeacon can’t find me in here” (Chris Coupe); “Looking after the Church is one thing, but moonlighting as a crane operator — now that’s really living!” (Geoffrey Robinson); “Who said, ‘We need a faculty to remove the vestry’?” (Peter Sebbage); The Clergy Away Day took on a whole new meaning” (Lynda Sebbage); “Despite the best efforts of several trained negotiators, the last protester simply wouldn’t leave the digger cab at the site of the new bypass” (Anthony Goodger); “Cockpit, pulpit? What’s the difference, right?” (Simon Champion); “What report was it we needed burying?” (Clive Deverell); “Lift mine eyes, O lift mine eyes” (Robert Shooter); “Fire the canons” (Brian Davies); “‘This is one way of getting people to look up to the clergy again!’ he thought, as he gazed earthwards” (Philip Deane); Just as the Bishop was about to lower the new spire on to the cathedral nave, he became distracted by the wasp which had become trapped in the cabin of the crane” (David Thunder).

As ever, the winner receives a prize of Fair­trade chocolate, courtesy of Divine Chocolate.


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