Do you fancy a Shoe Church?

Are you a woman?

Are you struggling to find a church that appeals to you?

Well never fear, a church in Taiwan has the answers for you (apparently). With (apparently) a church that has been designed to be shaped like a shoe, in order to attract more women to church.

Shoe-Church

According to the Daily Mail:

A video released by China Central Television Station shows the huge building, which is made out of 320 pieces of blue tinted glass, stands on the an empty sandy area near the waterfront. 

According to Huanqiu.com, the fashionable church is specially designed to appeal to female worshippers, with many attractive design features.

Zheng Rongfeng, spokesman of the Southwest Coast National Scenic Area, said there will be a total of 100 female-oriented features in the church, among which 71 have been finished. 

They include chairs for ‘lovers,’ maple leaves, biscuits and cakes – all ideal for romantic photographs.

Since construction of the stunning high-heeled church began, many tourists have been flocking to the area to take pictures.

Although the reports say this is a church catered towards female worshippers, it is unclear what type of church it is. 

Would you go to a Shoe Church?

(spotted over at Christian Nightmares)

Buy a “Christian Puzzle” for Christmas

Do you like playing with puzzles? Would you like a Christian puzzle?

Can you imagine your time on Christmas Day working on a puzzle with your loved ones?

Guys! Does your wife / girlfriend / mum / mother in law / female friend like puzzles.

Maybe its best not to buy this puzzle for someone else…

Christian Jigsaw Puzzles

If you have to, then you can get this from  zazzle.co.uk

The “Burn The Heathens”* Checklist

So. The Huffington Post have published the follow this evening: Bristol University’s Christian Union Bans Women From Speaking At Meetings, which includes the following:

The Huffington Post UK has seen the email sent out by president Matt Oliver to all BUCU members which said: “It is ok for women to teach in any CU setting… However we understand that this is a difficult issue for some and so decided that women would not teach on their own at our weekly CU meetings, as the main speaker on our Bristol CU weekend away, or as our main speaker for mission weeks.

“But a husband and wife can teach together in these.”

In the light of a few of the debates, and upset that has erupted, I’d like to offer the following checklist, of equipment and attitudes, to anyone thinking about staying in and “Burning The Heathens*” via Twitter / Facebook.

  1. Pitchfork (Sharpened)
  2. Axes
  3. Burning torches
  4. Bible Teaching from someone you agree with.
  5. Lack of patience.
  6. Lack of willingness to discuss.
  7. Don’t ask why
  8. Fuel for the fire.
  9. Don’t check if this happening elsewhere.
  10. Acceptance.

With thanks to @SeanUSX for the inspiration.

Please remember this list can be useful for any time we need to go out and burn people*.

Interested in the Bristol CU situation? Here is some further reading:

*No one involved with The Church Sofa website supports the idea of actually burning people. Thats not nice, and you would deserve the full force of the law on you if you were to do sometime like that.

Top Ten Unpopular Online Opinions

Isn’t the internet great?

Because of the internet we have the opportunity to connect, and discuss various topics with various people around the world, via blogs, Twitter, Facebook etc. Normally things seem to tick by without too much hassle, but then, every now and then. Someone comes out and shares an opinion on something that seems to attract all manner of disgruntled characters performing the internet equivalent of screaming in that persons face. This sadly also applies to Christians online, getting upset about other opinions that other Christians have about “Christian” things.

Over the last two months the Church Sofa lads have kept their ear to the ground, and have compiled the following list of possibly the most wrong opinions out there:

  1. Harry Potter is *** **** ******.
  2. Abortion ** *** * ***** *** ***** *****.
  3. The *** is ** ****** of women.
  4. * am so ******** that ***** *** **.
  5. I am not comfortable with *** *********** but I think ***** ********** ** ** really.
  6. *** **** is a great *******.
  7. The General Synod did the ***** thing when they voted on women bishops.
  8. ***** ***** *** * ***** of time.
  9. The last ********* was *** * **********.
  10. Twilight is *** * ******* to ****.
Due to the risk of starting an all out internet war, we’ve decided to regulate ourselves a little bit and censor the above list.
The thing is, what do we do when we see an opinion online that we disagree with. Do we leave? Do we discuss / debate it? Or do we attack the person behind the comments, either directly or from the “tone” of what we’re saying?
How do we handle it when people have vastly different views to our own?
Do you have any tips for dealing with people angry at you online?
This post originally appeared on The Big Bible Website.

10 great things about the Church of England

During a week where everyone and their cat seems to be having a pop at the Church of England, the Evangelical Alliance has tried to calm everyone with a well timed list of things that the good old C of E… is actually ok at:

10 great things about the Church of England

10 great things about the Church of England

 The Guardian described the General Synod as “a long and boring suicide note”. But before declaring the Church of England dead, here’s a quick review of a few of the things the Church has done, is doing and is planning to do…

1.    International development

The Church of England continues to be a voice against injustice and for the people around the world living in poverty. They continue to try and influence governments, work with churches here in the UK and overseas and with charities. With seats in the House of Lords, bishops continue to question the government about development, and stand up for the UK’s aid budget. Not to mention the numerous charities that individual Anglican churches are committed to supporting.

2.    Paying a living wage

Yesterday’s General Synod voted in favour of ensuring that all church employees are paid a living wage. The living wage is higher than the minimum wage, which at the moment stands at £6.19, outside London. By supporting the living wage, the Church of England is encouraging individual churches, diocese etc. to pay their employees £7.45 around the UK and £8.55 in London.

3.    Women’s rights

The news from the General Synod may have created controversy concerning the role of women in the Church of England, but it was only at the end of October that bishops in the House of Lords were lobbying the government to fulfil its and the UN’s commitment to strive for gender equality around the world and to place women at the centre of international development and the fight against poverty. Historically too, the Church has stood up for women, providing some of the first free schools for girls and supporting Josephine Butler’s campaign against the Contagious Diseases Act.

4.    Education

One in five primary school children are educated by Church of England primary schools, and there are 190 Church of England secondary schools in England. This makes the Church of England the largest provider of schools in the country.

5.    Abolition

In 1807 the Slave Trade Act was passed largely due to the efforts of William Wilberforce, who was supported and backed by John Newton, a Church of England clergyman. But the fight against slavery is something the Church of England has continued to be a part of; as the Church and the individuals within it campaign against human trafficking.

Read Further at eauk.org 

Do any of the list particularly stand out for you?

Who Am I? : An open letter to female clergy in the Church of England

Unless you’ve had your head in the Sunday school sand pit, there may have been some church related news over the last week, in that the Church of England synod debated changing the rules over the question of Women Bishops… and decided not to.

Well in the light of this, I’m please to present an open letter from Lorraine, to female clergy in the Church of England

I have spent most of my life very confused about who I am. You see, my natural talents,
giftings you might call them, do not conform to what others believe they should be.

At the age of seven, when one of my classmates answered a question wrongly during an
assembly, the headmaster remarked that “Girls are not very good at maths”, allowing about
200 boys to laugh at her. The remark was puzzling, because I knew maths was my strongest
and favourite subject. Was I not really a girl then? By the age of eleven, that same man had
included me in the handful of pupils he considered gifted enough to have extra lessons in
mental arithmetic techniques, because “they would have fun doing it”! Had I changed? No.
In the intervening time, he had recognised those talents, and sought to nurture them,
despite my being “just a girl”.By the time I left secondary education I had four good A levels
Maths, Further Maths, Physics, and Chemistry – oh, and S level Maths too.

At the age of eighteen, my father told me that he didn’t understand why I was applying for
university, because: it would be a waste as I would get married and stay at home; and, girls
that did degrees couldn’t cope and burnt out. I worshipped the ground my father stood on,
so was dismayed. Did I really have no other future? I had no idea what I wanted to do, but
knew I hadn’t reached my potential yet. Choosing what to study and where was tricky;
there was no-one in my family with experience to advise me, and it was made all the harder
by the nagging doubt that my father might be right. Possibly the most poignant memory I
have of my father is his tears of pride at my Graduation.

At the age of seventeen, careers advisers dismissed engineering as an option, despite my
skill-set, “because it’s dirty, and un-ladylike, dear, and you will find it hard to get a job”, i.e.
nice girls don’t do engineering, and even if they do, no-one will take them seriously. So
what was it to be: Maths or Physics? I liked both. Astronomy/Astrophysics used both, but
the post-grad job market was extremely small and very competitive. Engineering used both,
and appeared to have good job prospects, questions of gender aside. So could I be an
Engineer and female? At the age of twenty-five, having graduated with an upper-second in
Engineering, and having been employed nearly four years at an industry’s research centre
learning my profession, the Institution of Mechanical Engineers saw fit to make me a
Corporate Member, and consequently I became Chartered.

While people were telling me what I could and could not be, to the point that I didn’t know
who I was, I was slowly developing according to my talents – despite what other people
thought, said and did. Sometimes, they changed their minds as a result.What if my natural talents,
“God-given” you might say, had lain in helping people to discover that there is a God who loves them?
What if I were a good listener, and that same God of love had a habit of working through me
to heal their inmost hurts? What if I could explain the Christian faith to people in a language
they could understand? What if I had a knack of keeping people of different viewpoints together,
encouraging them when times got tough, restoring them when they strayed? At the same time that
I was being told I was “just a girl”, that “girls can’t do maths”, that “girls burn out if they
have higher education”, that “women in engineering are only good enough to make the tea and look
pretty on recruitment brochures”, other girls who felt called to the Ministry were being
laughed at “because only men can be ordained”. Those just a few years older than me, if
they pushed (because they had no choice – it was after all who they were), became deaconesses
– to be shunted off with the laity while the Clergy considered what was best for them. In
part, this has been remedied – many now serve the church as priests…

Today I cried for my sisters-in-Christ.

However, it is my strongly held view that the God of Love, who sent his Son to redeem a
fallen world, and who works mightily by His Spirit through the hearts and hands of those
who love Him, will not let today be the end of the story, any more than Good Friday was.
That same God has a habit of changing people from the inside, restoring them to His
likeness, conforming them to His plan – frequently through their own actions to the contrary
(eg. Jonah and Paul)! My sisters, please hold on to who you are in Him; no-one can take
that away from you, even if they deny you the means to express it. Allow Him to continue
to nurture you. Continue to do things His way. The miracle will happen.

In any case, Synod have only said “Not this way”. Who is to say that God does not have
better in store?

But then, what do I know? I’m an Engineer, not a Theologian; and when all’s said and done,
I’m “just a girl”.

Lorraine

What do you think?