So, you'll remember we're going to church to get Eben in to the local school. Well we hadn't actually managed to make it there until yesterday. Too much going on frankly, family stuff, Louis etc. etc. What we didn't want to do was to sporadically turn up, so we waited for a clear run of Sunday's so that we could get there regulary and get our faces known.
Jesus what a chore. I was in a foul mood all morning, having, theological, sociologic, ethical and personal dillemmas, which turned me into a complete bastard to be with. On the 10 minute walk there, we discussed that if need be Nicky would go on her own, as she didn't have the same issues. This made me feel like crap and I said no, no, it's something we really should do as a family, but if something needed doing in the house then that would take precedence.
And then we got there.
I've been to loads of churches in my time and on most occassions, I quite enjoy it when I'm there. Good sing-song, bit of a sermon, that if delivered by a decent orator is worth a think about, even if it's totally cynical and a few other bits and bobs that you can put up with.
Few things about our new church.
1. It's a modern building. Pine beams and arches, boring as sin. No feeling of grandure, more a feeling of Youth Club.
2. The standard weekly service is 2 hours long - yes 2 hours. 12 hymns, countless frippery and rubbish.
3. There is a distinct feeling that the good folk don't like kids. Within 15 minutes of the start I was in the back room with Eben watching Storykeepers, which is dull as dish water.
4. Extortion. The opening 10 minutes of the service was all about how big a part of being a christian is about your commitment to giving. This was sporadically sprinkled with more requests for money throughout the ceremony by all accounts. During the interval - yes interval - we are asked to donate money for biscuits and tea which is when I put my pound in. Straight after the interval they hand round the felt bag and I've used all my money, so I look really stingey.
5. The peace comes at about 11.15 just as Louis needed feeding, which meant a processionof awkward looking parishoners shaking hands with a woman with her tit out. Nice.
6. The least spiritual ceremony i've had the displeasure of attending.
7. The most uninspirational and boring deacon, I've been unfortunate enugh to listen to.
8. Boring hymns. Nothing written before 1988. Need I say more.
We left in disarray frankly. Our only hope is that half term meant a lot of absence from all the nice people. I'm certainly not willing to go every week. Nicky's comment was she sat there thinking 'do you lot really believe all this'. That's a very bad sign she can normally suspend her natural instinct.
Christ knows what we're going to do now.