Saturday, May 16, 2009

Revised Prayer Book issued

The Beaker Common Prayer is now available in all its glory on the internet, in time for you to memorise the Liturgy for the Nativity of Morrissey ready for next weeks festival. It really is deeply edifying, containing such nuggets of 'truth' as these:

Secret 2 - Retreat centres are amazing places. People go there and you can offer them plain food, give them menial tasks to do (tell them it’s "discipline"), just leave them to their own devices (and call it "space"). And then you charge them a fortune. Just like my old school.

Secret 3 - It’s not good enough to let people discover themselves. People have to go abroad to learn news of home. If you offer them the good old Church of England, they’ll think of musty hassocks and dodgy cassocks and stay at home of a Sunday morning. But offer them Celtic Christianity and they’ll hear the wind blowing over the heather and the waves crashing on Iona’s shores. You can tell them to listen to the "whisper of the Wild Goose" – as if wild geese whisper. They honk.

But never mind, if it keeps the punters happy tell you can tell them that wild geese sing 15th century madrigals. Let people sing in Latin and they won’t understand it and they’ll be released from their mundane lives. Tell them it’s Primeval Mystic Truth, discovered by the Ancients, and they’ll swallow anything you want to feed them. Tell them it’s primeval spiritualism, and brings you one-ness with the universe, and they’ll give you all their money.

whoever the author is, they clearly have too much time on their hands, and have spent far too much time with a) Anglicans b) Pagans c) Health and Safety officials. I did wonder whether it has anything to do with Simon Parke, who's Abbot Peter novels are a superb deconstruction of the navel-gazing retreat/spirituality industry.


  1. Nope, nothing to do with Simon Parke, I'll have to look him up. (a) (b) and (c) are all true, though.