Tuesday, 13 May 2008

All together now...I'm an ecumaniac!

A very united weekend in Falkirk. Saturday was the last day of our (i.e. Falkirk Churches Together's) Christian Aid book sale which had run from Monday to Saturday and raised a grand total of £1700. Not quite the massive sums of George St, but it is the 1st time this has been done. Then on the feast of Pentecost we scrapped our 10.30 Eucharist to join with 2 CofS and a United (CofS/URC/Methodist) congregation for our main act of worship. Hymns, Brownies with pom-poms and the serious weirdness of religious lyrics to "Eleanor Rigby". Not totally convinced by that, but well, it is different. Very few of the faithful absented themselves from this joint beano (I mean act of worship). Still glad we had the blessed mutter of the Mass (Grey Book) at 9am tho. My ecumania has limits. I still don't want to be a Presbyterian.

Afterwards, a number of my little flock wondered if there was any chance of having the Muslim speaker we had in place of a sermon on Lent 3 back to take part in a discussion exploring Islam/Christian common ground/differences. I respond +vely. The good thing is this request doesn't come from the usual suspects. You know, the forward looking element which every congrgation has to a greater or lesser degree. These 5 aren't in that category- they're just nice, normal, ordinary Episcopalians. Yes, they do exist!

Then on Monday night I drop into the group being led by one of my CofS colleagues to discover it's looking at Sacramental Theology. In 2 hours we cover intercommunion, Donatists, the Apostolic succession (Tactile), Transubstantiation, Consubstantiation and Receptionism. Phew! All this unity is rather stimulating for the brain. But I need to explain to G that the RC's don't put all the stress on the epiclesis as the moment of consecration in the Eucharistic Prayer. (Dominical words, dear boy). That can wait till next week, when we look at the differences between the Jesus of Faith and the Jesus of History. Where's my Ernest Renan?

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