Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Nobody's fool

A fantastic mystery worshipper review from the Ship of Fools website. Anyone who has at some point in their lives been involved in, or coerced into, attending this type of church will find it strikes a chord. Stuart, whose blog I've shamelessly nicked it from, was particularly taken with: "What part of the service was like heaven?" Answer: The five minutes smoking outside.
My personal favourite was this:
"Toward the end of the sermon, Ian Andrews asked who in the congregation, when speaking in tongues, favoured the letter S or K. A few people raised their hands. He then asked one lady who had raised her hand to stand up and speak in tongues, but to favour the letter L. The poor lady look horrified but obliged."

This reminded me of someone who told me that his tongues strategy consisted of repeating the phrase, "Monica's got an anemone" very rapidly, just occasionally throwing in the name of the group "Chaka Khan" to add a little variation. (...I'm not sure he was joking...)

Read. Enjoy. I bet the congregation are lovely, lovely people - but just get down on your knees NOW and thank God now for all those with common sense, a dry sense of humour and a little cynicism!


  1. Ye Gods! Comptons Lane? Horsham? I lived right next door as a small child. Looks as if I had a lucky escape then.

  2. LOL - Fantastic review wasn't it and you're so right about it striking a chord ;-)

  3. I'd (almost) be tempted to go just to see if it was that awful.

  4. Thanks for this – it reminds me of my sessions at a Jesus Army Church – which to be fair were a whole lot more ‘Scripture’ based. You may remember I sent you a recording I made on my phone of a snippet of a ‘tongues’ worship session? If we assume that the Spirit is a Spirit of unity, then a hour’s worth of sheer, unadulterated egotism – where (as I have seen) members of a congregation vie with each other in who can be the most ‘liberated’ in the Spirit (tho’ if you were to behave in the street like that, you’d get sectioned!) then I find it rather difficult to believe that the extremes of charismatic worship stem from ‘The Spirit’. Some good plainsong hymns, English deference and a better understanding of the history and purpose of liturgy (from the Greek laos ergia ‘the work of the people’) is far better in my estimation!

    By the way, lady with her finger on the pulse of popular culture, ‘Chaka Khan’ was a woman, not a group!

  5. Hi Peter, yes, I remember that recording. Re Chaka Khan - oh, yeah... I'm too old for popular culture/ deliberate mistake/ at least the spelling was right this time (I hope).
    You can tell I'm back at work.