Blesséd @Home @ Greenbelt – The Video

This is a video of the Blesséd Alt:Worship Mass at Greenbelt last Friday night.  Unfortunately the battery ran out before the end but you get the idea.

I wish we had someone operating a roving camera as well so that you could get the full effect of being there as the bubbles filled the whole place during the confession liturgy.  Very well done to Fr Simon and the Blesséd team!

So here you go, me playing guitar with Metanoia – the first time I’ve put that on the blog!  Moshing in church?  8-o

Now I’d better get back to planning The Rock Mass at Dewsbury Minster!

Blesséd Liturgy from Greenbelt

Fr Simon has made all of the resources used for the Blesséd Eucharist at Greenbelt publicly available here.  It was great to be asked to be involved with the music!!

Every 60 Seconds on the Internet

Hat Tip @Jesterstudio

Rob Bell

It doesn’t matter what perspective you come from, if you are in any way involved with Christianity you will probably have an opinion about Rob Bell.  This past weekend at Greenbelt was buzzing with talk of the man who would take to main stage on Saturday morning.  People were intrigued by what he was going to say or do.  Everyone loves a a scandal or controversy.  Later when talking with people about who they had seen so far, Rob Bell seemed to be the topic of conversation that they would inevitably return to.

I don’t really have an opinion about the Rob Bell I saw at Greenbelt weekend.  When I went to the big top for a later talk he was sitting on the grass four feet in front of us.  I can confirm that Rob Bell is a mortal man.  He eyeballed me as he left the venue and they are very much the eyes of a normal guy looking down the road in front of him. 

There is a much more interesting take on the engaging nature of an encounter with Rob Bell on John Khurt’s blog.  Here there is a fascinating post entitled “An Atheist’s Encounter With Rob Bell”.  I suggest you read the whole thing as it is a great read.  For now I will leave you the concluding paragraph (spoiler alert).

We live in in an age of continuous scientific development and this continues to raises doubts about all forms of faith. Rob Bell and like-minded Christians offer a potential conduit towards the restoration of credibility for Christianity. Furthermore, from a self-interested perspective, although not ‘a believer’, I feel more involved and included and, most importantly, open and curious towards faith and the message of Jesus.

Whatever your view of “that bookthis is the sort of encounter with Christianity that the world is seeking.

Greenbelt

Apologies for my absence on the blog.  It has been all go round these ‘ere parts.  One thing that I have been doing is preparing for Greenbelt festival.  I thought I’d let you all know what’s happening and where you can find me if you are coming to Greenbelt this year.

This has involved a long distance trip for Fr Simon who came all the way up to God’s Country to rehearse for the Blesséd Mass on Friday night.  Metanoia (the band for the Rock Mass) have been preparing for the live music aspects of the opening service of the festival.  It has been fantastic working with Fr Simon and the Blesséd and we’re really looking forward to worshipping together.  I’ll probably grab two minutes to say more after the service itself.  Please come along to the Big Top on Friday evening at 5:30 to be truly Blesséd.

I will also be helping out with the social media surgeries for Graham Richards.  I may also be in The Jesus Arms.  It’s just possible.

If you are going to Greenbelt this year, please come along and say hello.  I’ll probably be tweeting throughout.

Rioting on Sunday Morning

It seems only two minutes since I found myself standing before the congregation as a “community leader” to talk about the headline news from Norway.  And yet, here I find myself once more.  It is a strange place to be as people look to me to try and make sense of the world around them.  The church can sometimes just stick its head in the sand on a Sunday morning and carry on regardless.  “Riots you say?  What riots”?  I find myself unable to do that.  Perhaps it is a failing of mine and I should add it to the ever-growing list.  No matter where I turn I can’t escape the incarnational God who gets his hands dirty.  I can’t skirt around the God who told us to pray “Your kingdom come, your will be done on Earth as in Heaven”. 

You may have noticed that I have been strangely silent on the blog this week.  Mostly this has been because I have felt a bit numb.  Living in the UK and watching it descend into chaos is all too reminiscent of The Dark Night.  Fortunately we live in a part of the city that hasn’t seen any unrest.  West Yorkshire police dealt with any flickers of trouble around Leeds and Huddersfield brilliantly and we did not see the same level of unrest as others.  However, the whole country seems to be gripped by fear.  I spoke to my brother earlier in the week about the football match we are going to this afternoon.  He was wanting to call it off.  The mood in our community is troubled. 

Some how tomorrow I will stand up and try to help our community make sense of all of this.  I will try to encourage them to be part of the future.  To start to bring that kingdom to our communities. 

I have put together some simple prayers that we will use.  Then we will pray the prayer from the CofE website in solidarity with our nation wide community.

Father in heaven,

In our homes.

Your kingdom come, your will be done.

In our families

Your kingdom come, your will be done.

In our communities

Your kingdom come, your will be done.

In our cities

Your kingdom come, your will be done.

On our streets

Your kingdom come, your will be done.

In our parks

Your kingdom come, your will be done.

In our schools

Your kingdom come, your will be done.

In our police forces

Your kingdom come, your will be done.

In our town hall

Your kingdom come, your will be done.

In our government

Your kingdom come, your will be done.

Gracious God,
We pray for peace in our communities this day.
We commit to you all who work for peace and an end to tensions,
And those who work to uphold law and justice.
We pray for an end to fear,
For comfort and support to those who suffer.
For calm in our streets and cities,
That people may go about their lives in safety and peace.
In your mercy, hear our prayers,
now and always.

Amen

The New Shoot on a Branch of a Very Ancient Oak

Hayley Matthews has done a podcast for Fresh Expressions sharing her experiences of being a pioneer minister.  Well worth a listen!