Friday, September 11, 2009

EQUAL TIME


The folks in the post just below this one are part of a small group of left-wing Catholics nobody pays any attention to anyway. On the other hand, the folks at Trinity-Wall Street Episcopal Church, one of the oldest, most historic(Alexander Hamilton is buried there) and most influential Episcopal churches in the country, actually thought that this was a good idea.

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

HORRIFIED!!!!!!!!!

Can someone tell me why this clown business is so popular these days?? Is there some new age strange theory behind it?>!?!?!

Matthew K said...

Not having ever attended such a "service", I've only ever read of the clown mass...

But I've seen two different explanations:

A) This is a mass held for children

B) Clowns represent something about humility, ridicule, etc...

perhaps one of the resident pastors can elaborate?

Iggy said...

1) The Words of Institution were not spoken, so this isn't even the Eucharist. Does anyone know, at a clown mass, do they sign the words? That may be a loophole. Also, we do not have the full service, so the words might have been said, but this appears to be "mime-like" instead of spoken.

2) There seemed to be an older crowd in the pews, so it is probably not a mass for children.

3) Are the clowns even priests?

IggyAntiochus

Anonymous said...

"Are the clowns even priests?"

I'm gonna take a random stab and say that these are not truly clowns, but priests dressed as such.

Christopher Johnson said...

You're right. The lead clown here is the rector of T-WS.

Anonymous said...

"There seemed to be an older crowd in the pews"

Have we noticed that whenever there's a ridiculous "service" such as this... the average age of the congregation is...

There must've been something in the waters those years...

St. Blogwen said...

Am I the only one who kept expecting pratfalls and for the head clown to turn the "Communion elements" into doves or some other foreign matter?

Anonymous said...

Deliver me from ever having to suffer through a clown mass. But as to the theory behind it . . .

It goes back to the 1960s, with books like Floyd Shaffer's Clown Ministry and Harvey Cox's Feast of Fools,. Remember Godspell? In 1999, composer Stephen Schwartz wrote in "Notes on the script": "There are often misconceptions about the concept of the clown analogy in Godspell. For instance, sometimes it is misunderstood as the cast being 'hippies' or 'flower children'. The concept was derived by John-Michael Tebelak from a book by Harvey Cox, a professor at Harvard Divinity School, entitled Feast of Fools, most particularly the chapter called 'Christ the Harlequin.'" The Christ/Christian-as-clown idea is also reflected in that standard of hymnals in the late 60s and 70s, "Lord of the Dance."

The concept indeed has to do with humility, vulnerability, willingness to be ridiculed, letting the air of overblown solemnity and, most of all, being "fools for Christ." (I Cor. 4:10)

I still find clowns creepy.

Dakotapam said...

Oh, my...

Rev. Allen Bergstrazer said...

I'm pretty sure this is not what St. Paul meant in 1 Corinthians 4:10. I think its closer to the foolishness of Galations 3:1-5.

Alan said...

My two cents worth a couple of months later.

1. It's a church so the "clown thing" is old not new. We're always a decade or, in this case, four behind.

2. Priest of clowns. The two categories are not mutually exclusive.

3 The people in the pews probably thought it was strange but 'cute'. IMHO if that word is used about anything in worship I don't do it again.

Peace
Alan

Anonymous said...

Father forgive them.......

I was relieved that the bubble soap and wine did not seem to have gotten mixed up (the bubbles would have tasted really bad and the bowl of wine would have made some pretty poor bubbles.

If I could stomach watching it again, concentrating on the odd gear on the "choir?" in behind I would have further reason for ridicule. They did not look like clowns as much as like Satan in white.

Sack-RE-Lid-gee-ous

In this climate of all too frequent religious nuttiness......I sometimes picture the founders of a particular church or denomination stopping by for a little visit................

submandave said...

I was very disappointed. I watched all the way to the end but they never put the wine in a seltzer bottle. Now that would have been a service to watch!

The Rev Canon Mark Shier, Diocese of Los Angeles said...

Not exactly my style, but then if we can worship the Prince of Peace in the regalia of war (as I and so many others did in Vietnam -- we did leave our M16s outside, if we had an outside), then perhaps we could be a little more charitable toward those who are being fools for Christ that some might be brought to Him.

Fred said...

Priests dressed as clowns? We already have enough clowns dressed like priests and pastors. Now we have priest and pastors dressing like clowns. I think I saw Bishop Hanson and Bishop Shori in there somewhere. I just can't be sure if they are clowns or clergy - on second thought, they are clowns who just dress (sort of) like clergy.

Anonymous said...

This celebration was certainly not valid.

Mamma said...

that made me physically sick to watch it.

Anonymous said...

At first there were gasps of horror and shock. But then I actually became offended. And i think that this was because the most sacred action that can ever be celebrated and shared in had become assocaited with something so utterly trivial and trite. The bubbles did it. I mean, really.... Just simply rediculous.
And yes, i had my voice to the chorus that it all looked just a tad too creepy.....

Joshua said...

The funny part is, underneath all the absolutely LUDICROUS stuff, a pretty good ceremonial is actually discernible. Only the Episcopalians could possibly bring these two together!

Dubhglas Henning said...

I attended Christ Church Ponte Vedra, the previous home of Jim Cooper at Trinity, as a child. The clown eucharist there absolutely terrified me. Whatever kind of children this sort of service is intended I was not one of them.