Have you ever wondered what people who aren’t used to Church services, think about Church services? Have you ever wondered if its clear what you should be doing in a church communion service? Have you ever wondered what you probably should not do during communion?*
Here’s our list…
- Sneeze in to the hair of the person in front of you.
- Loudly discuss if the common cold is contagious.
- Loudly discuss the vintage of the wine, just after you’ve had a sip.
- Start a debate about the various names for the communion service.
- Give everyone a special Holy Kiss during the peace.
- Jesus took communion as part of a meal. Time for a food fight?
- Ask your neighbour if they’ve had their flu shots recently.
- If you happen to take two bits of bread… anything you can make a sandwich with?
- Loudly question the choice of wine, and ask for cider instead. The colder the better
- You know the napkin that is passed around with The Communion Cup? Use that to blow your nose.
Any other suggestions?
*The Church Sofa doesn’t accept any responsibilities for any action that results from the above. If you get involved in a food fight, please don’t blame us!
In case you’ve not heard, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is now released. Rogue One, while not one of “the prequels” is set soon before the original Star Wars, and is a good fun watch for fans of the first Star Wars movies, and people who want to start watching them. (But you will so miss the fan service that takes place)
As there is a new Star Wars film, it feels right to continue the series looking at What The Church Can Learn from Star Wars. (Please see here for the look at the original trilogy, or here for Star Wars: The Force Awakens.)
Obviously, there be spoilers for the new Star Wars movie ahead. Not massive spoilers – and probably more like hints… but they are still spoilers! If you care about spoilers, please go and watch the new movie first, then come back!
Please scroll past Darth Spoiler Vader to read What the Church can learn from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
- Don’t believe everything you hear. That internet rumour about anti-Donald Trump stuff in Star Wars, if its true, I didn’t see it.
- Don’t Judge A Druid On Your First Impressions
- Do NOT Discount The Strong Believer. They might be pretty handy in a fight.
- Parents. Talk To Your Kids! They might help blow up a Death Star one day.
- Be Ready To Change Your Opinion Of Someone. They might turn out to be handy with a blaster one day.
- That Person Who Keeps Muttering About The Force? Turns out they might be able to hear really well…
- Sometimes, you have to jump. How you’d make it makes very little sense, but you might still need to jump.
- Youth Pastor starting to have ambition? Blow up the planet he’s on.
- Watch out for old friends.
- Sometimes, life sucks. This is not a bright easy movie. It’s dark, and has a smell of death. You could say its a very 2016 movie.
- This is Not The End. You could almost say there is hope.
Any more you could add?
As always. Any problems with these, please let Disney know.
What Does Church Mean To You? As a Christian, if someone asked me that question, I’d probably give a very nice stock “Google” type answer. Something like “a building used for public Christian worship”, or “A body of believers”. (Which, when you think about it, doesn’t make much sense really).
I guess, what I’m saying is that if someone asked me, what does Church mean to me, I would struggle to put my answer into words. And I’m fairly sure, I’m not the only person who feels this way.
With that in mind, Sofa has designed this little wheel for anyone else who struggles to find the words to answer, “What Does Church Mean To You?”
Are there any additions you would add?
So, lets face it. 2016 is an interesting year. With arguably negative political campaigns held on either side of the Atlantic, leading to negativity spilling out of the newspapers and impacting people in a real way. It feels like the world is leaving 2016 in a far more negative place then when it entered it.
I’m not going to write a full discourse looking at why this may be the case, instead I’m going to look at a few ideas of what could be done to improve matters. (There’s no way of phrasing the next sentence without being cheesy) How can we spread more love in 2016?
Read The Gruffalo…
Kids books are awesome, and the world needs more awesome. Try The Gruffalo for a flavour of awesome. Actually try anything from Julia Donaldson.
Volunteer For A Local Charity / Organization.
Because volunteers are awesome, and there’s probably something out there you’d like doing. (I personally know of opportunities to cook, and build lego.*) If nothing else, doing something good might help to improve your CV.
Write A Love Letter To A Stranger.
Like these guys…
Cook Your Neighbour A Meal.
Because who doesn’t love free food?
(Doesn’t have to look this nice)
Offer Free Hugs
Step 1. Order loads of these stickers from Amazon.
Step 2. PUT THEM EVERYWHERE!!!!
Any other suggestions you’d like to share?
*These are two separate volunteer positions, at different places. There isn’t a magical place where you cook AND play with lego…. I dont think.
Well. Winter time is now here. The nights are darker, and the colder months are here. Before we snuggle together for warmth too much, let’s pause and consider how a Christian should keep warm.
We asked a number of high profile (and therefore Godly) Christians, how they keep their church nice and warm. Here are the tips we picked up.
- While in Church, ensure you share the peace energetically – build up a sweat!
- Have communion wine on a regular basis to keep you warm.
- Pray that you will be heated from within by the flame of Gods Spirit!
- Ensure you Church has heated kneeling mats.
- Adjust the seating arrangements – cuddle up a little bit!
- When cooking, use a open fire. Like the disciples would have done. Obviously use an open fire indoors as well*.
- On the lead up to Christmas? Ensure everyone has an advent candle, each!
- Switch that heated baptism pool on high!
- Test your faith! Call down fire from heaven!
- “Just fix the flippin heating.”
Any other ideas?
* Obviously, this might be a joke**.
** Actually DONT DO THIS.***
*** If you do… dont blame the Sofa for the state of the floor afterwards… or the state of anyone or anything else!
One thing that Churches seem to have got right is the idea that work gets done, when its done in team. You get church welcoming teams, set up teams, preaching teams, youth teams, pastoral care teams, communication teams, coffee teams, sound teams, set up set up teams, etc.
Sofa wonders how often time is found for good old fashioned team building exercises in church, as opposed to committee style meetings? What would a team building exercise look like in a church context anyway?
Here are a few ideas.
- Break. Then recreate your stain glass windows using left over Sunday School craft materials.
- Build a tower of babel. With Lego.
- Who can read Psalm 119 outloud without taking a breath? Work as a team to look after anyone who faints.
- River crossings – See who can walk the furthest across a river.
- Who can preach the longest sermon?
- Water Drinking. How much wine can you drink before it starts to taste like water?
- Lightsaber Duels. The vicar can have the red one.
- Work out how to transport someone on a bed, through your church roof. Then do it.
- Build a Noah’s ark. See if it floats. Don’t bring life jackets – they show lack of faith*. If there’s a problem see number 4.
- Go to the pub.
Any other ideas?
*Please note, I am really joking
Have you ever felt a bit overwhelmed by people? Particularly talking to a lot of different people at the same time? How about the extrovert festival that is “The Peace” in many churches?
Have you ever wondered if there was a different way to share “The Peace” in your church? Well we’ve put together 10 ways for you to share the peace next Sunday:
- Hand out cold beers, encourage people to open them mid service.
- Bear hug your neighbour.
- Time your pizza order really well.
- European style kiss on the cheek.
- Put in black contact lenses… Pretend you’re in Being Human…
- Dance around the hall, like no ones watching. Except everyone might be…
- Run around shaking hands with as many people as you can in 60 seconds (post the results below if you wish!)
- Introduce yourself to someone new, while pretending to be from a different country.
- Say hello to the person leading the service. Ask if they get lonely standing up there by themselves.
- Stick comedy post it notes on the back of people…
Any other ideas?
Over the next month and a half there will be various Christian Festivals all around England, that will attract many Christians from all different Churches over the place. With festivals such as Momentum, New Wine, Soul Survivor, Keswick, Greenbelt. and Creation Fest, there are plenty to choose from.
As its the Summer Christian Festival Season, it is also time for the annual Church Sofa list of the best ways to create trouble at a Christian Festival… Consider this list in case you get bored or something…
- Spend the week “springing” around the festival. When questioned explain that you thought you were at Spring Harvest. (You may only want to actually do this at Spring Harvest*)
- Bring supplies of spare wellies** to sell. If its a hot sunny week, spray water over the grounds early in the morning in an attempt to convince people the weather is about to turn nasty.
- Greet people you meet with a Holy Kiss.
- Set up a stall offering to wash peoples feet. Once done charge them a tenner. If they say no, chase after them with the cheesey feet water.
- Run around naked, when challenged explain you are trying to recreate the world before The Fall.
- If you’re at Soul Survivor in Somerset, walk around planting “Goodbye” cards into the ground.
- “Borrow” a radio from one of the stewards. Begin whispering down the radio whenever they start to look bored. Topic of whispering is up to you.
- Make notes about how much more biblical your Christian Festival is compared to others!
- Open a stand offering to exchange people’s old wine for “New wine”. Run away before people realise that the “New wine”, is in fact, Ribena.
- Bring a megaphone to the festival with you. Early during the first morning, scream into the megaphone, then hide it quickly. When people rush to your tent to ask whats wrong, apologise and explain you just had a nightmare. Explain its been a problem since your tent was flooded one year at a previous Christian Festival. Be warned, you may end up with severe Prayer Ministry if you do this.
Any that you would like to add?
For more ideas, please check out last years list, 10 Ways To Manage Mischief At A Christian Festival.
Disclaimer: Do any of these at your own risk, the Sofa takes no responsibility for any trouble that happens to you if you do this, but if you do end up in Christian Festival Jail, please let us know what that’s like.
*As if you do this anywhere else, people may look at you strangely
** I may have checked the spelling of that a few times.