Sunday, December 23, 2007

A Happy Clappy Squirmalong

Picking up (belatedly) on yesterday's Emmylou And Atheism, I must report that the 'music' favoured by the happy-clappy brand - sadly the fastest growing and most vigorous - of Anglicanism can be enough to drive anyone into the arms of Dawkins. Yesterday I attended a wedding. A happy occasion and all that, and everything was going fine - nice work on organ and trumpet, well chosen Bible readings - when, suddenly, a guitar-drum-keyboard combo let rip with a medley of devotional songs of quite breathtaking fatuity, belted out in sub-pop style, to a rudimentary melody and still more rudimentary beat. In style and (alas) content, it was about on a par with a primary school singalong - and yet, alarmingly, instead of creating silent, squirming embarrassment (the preferred posture of the traditional Anglican), it was causing grown persons to assume a frankly daft facial expression, tilt their heads backwards and extend arms and hands in gestures of... hard to say quite what: abandon? Supplication? Either way, it was dsquieting, incongruous, and seemed to undermine everything about the rest of the service and its serious content. The trouble is that, to most of those gathered, it was almost certainly central. Which - had he been there (I didn't spot him) - would have confirmed all Dawkins's worst misgivings about Christianity. Shame. Tomorrow, DV, I shall be attending Midnight Mass at the ultra-high (thank G--) parish church.


  1. You have to look on the bright side. Sounds like these were minstrels, doing what minstrels do (although sans gallery) and it some quarters in went down a storm. Imagine what it could have been: you arrive at the church only to see the von Trapp family lurking near a microphone, a man with a disturbing resemblance to Elvis ascending the pulpit or Sir Elton John being shown to his seat - at the organ.

  2. Best to stick to the Church of Rome, Nige. If it doesn't involve incense & Latin, it's not a real religion, that's my line.

  3. when at school, some people arranged for a touring 'christian rock' band from the US to play a gig in our hall. they were every bit like an ordinary band of the day except for any hint of sex, drugs and rock & roll.

    I ask, what's the point?

  4. Miserable bugger! Perhaps we should stick to music written before the 20th century to avoid these situations in future. I suppose you could have registered your disgust by making a hasty exit, or perhaps asking the inconsiderate worshippers of God with their arms in the air to calm down and grow some dignity?

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