To be honest, I don't think my service Sunday was one of my best. It took as long to write, as I also write my own prayers (I just don't like what I find elsewhere, and I'm as capable as they are at putting thoughts together). There were too many new hymns and I did chop a reading down to size myself once the main point had been made. But it did reflect my own changes and did take a chance to explain how I understand the thinking of Rowan Williams and my differences with such. It's my turn back to a more realist position, and why whilst I agree with Don Cupitt about religion I don't agree with his all-embracing philosophical stance. As well as presenting the service I continued to do the music.
We had a new attender among the pathetic turnout. Now I am on a dating website and so far have been enjoying a text exchange with someone locally. She learnt (slowly) of my religious involvement (it's not something to advertise these days - by far the biggest number now is 'no religion') and she is herself neo-Pagan. But she told an ex-Catholic friend of me and the Unitarians and so that friend attended today for the first time and rather liked it. And I seem to remember that our Muslim attender's first time was when I took the service, and she kept coming until it was time for her to return to Iran.
The dating evening was a cock-up Sunday evening, because I didn't see the person with whom I've been messaging, but she was in this smallish, very packed venue with its blistering loud music. After 50 minutes I went outside to see if she was arriving, when she was already inside with a friend. So eventually after a further half an hour mainly outside I went and joined my friends arriving at another pub.
But no problems as my dating friend may arrive with new attender at the coffee morning on Friday. If both were to get involved (and my dating friend excused herself so as not to make me nervous - eh?) then we might be even further on the way to rejuvenating with more new blood the congregation. We have recruited new faces recently and if we hadn't the place would be in a sorry state indeed.
Richard Ashby’s reflections: Canterbury, Chichester & Rochester 27-29th Oct 2015 - The shared (originally facilitated) conversations were one of the recommendations of the ‘Pilling Report’ on Human Sexuality published in November 2013. Th...