Food Banks

The department I work in (Mission) have been hosting some learning conversations around Discipleship. Yesterday saw a gathering of folk who are involved with Food Banks. It was a chance to share stories – and to explore together, community engagement, food justice and community. One of the dimensions we were interested in was how the experience of being a Food Bank impacted faith journeying and theologies.
It turned out to be a wonderful day of laughter, tears and learning. Inspiring stories of love, community and faith (Stories of the opposition and criticism arose). The day was gathered around a Eucharist which turned out not only to be the participate framework of the day but a Sacramental understanding of Food Banks and their role/ministry/place (The writing of Sarah Miles being of profound significance for at least two of the people sharing their experiences).
There was also a deep thread around a theology of gift and giving.
The day certainly reinforced the importance in our faith journey of encounters with ‘other’ and how that opens up our own Soul Stuff, challenges us out of the ego/fear tags of “them” and moves us into a greater capacity for love.

Soul Revolution

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I’m liking the Soul Revolution initiative, encouraging people to pause each hour and be!
Be open to God, Be thankful, Be listening etc.
So much of how Christianity is mediated is actually Brain Stuff not Soul Stuff.
Why not try this as a team and share with each other what you encounter, experience, find …. and the changes that you begin to notice. Then invite young people to participate in the challenge of 60/60.
What awakens faith is desire, not information
Kenda Creasy Dean.

Evaluating my gigs

A couple of days ago I wrote this scale for a bit of fun, it’s a 1 – 10 assessment of comedic performance. The idea amused me (but hey, a lot of stuff does!) and thus my review of my two gigs in the last few days built on this into a Shipping-forecast-esque report:
(*adopts Shipping forecast voice*)
Thursday evening: Nerves cyclonic, humour variable. Overall though, 5, rising 6 – Moderate.
Saturday: 7, occasional 8 – Good!

Way to Go South West

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YCWSW have got Mark Yaconelli heading up a retreat day on March 6th, then speaking at their day conference on March 7th. Do take the chance to learn from Mark who has great wisdom and experience to offer on tending your own Soul, and on developing the Soul life of teenagers.
You’ll find the blurb here

The Biblical Narrative

Ever struggled to encapsulate the whole Biblical narrative? Cabbagetroll has summarised for you, nice work (made me laugh):
GENESIS
God: All right, you two, don’t do the one thing. Other than that, have fun.
Adam & Eve: Okay.
Satan: You should do the thing.
Adam & Eve: Okay.
God: What happened!?
Adam & Eve: We did the thing.
God: Guys
THE REST OF THE OLD TESTAMENT
God: You are my people, and you should not do the things.
People: We won’t do the things.
God: Good.
People: We did the things.
God: Guys
The rest is here
ht and all rights with Cabbagetroll

Comedic Update

I did my fifth proper ‘gig’ last week (I’m only counting full on proper sets using my own material) at the Corn Exchange in Newbury. They have an evening called ‘Live n’ Lyrical’ which is kind of Open-Mic-esque but performers have to book in at least a month in advance. No video sadly to do a post-match debrief but it went somewhere between a ‘5’ and a ‘6’ with smiles and laughter in evidence. At the last moment I switched from a political gag to a more surreal opening line, but on balance I think neither of these were quite right for the room/audience. Note to self: Need punchy gag (laugh), punchy gag (laugh) in the first 30 seconds with a mellow Arts Centre type audience as you are effectively your own warm up.
At the weekend though I was running the ‘Church Weekend Away’ evening entertainment and I was really pleased with this as a piece of MC-ing. I did an opening couple of minutes which got really solid laughter and was especially pleasing because the absence of staging and lighting made this more difficult. Holding the whole thing together, plus being able to Riff from stuff that happened made this a very pleasing experience indeed.
I am now thinking about the Richter scale for comedic post-gig analysis
1. DOA *
2. Bemusement
3. Evidence of amusement
4. Very Patchy laughter
5. Audience liking you but you fail to develop the potential
6. Good laughs but dead spots
7. Consistent warmth, some good laughter and at least one snort
8. Audience doing some of the work for you. The odd Belly laugh and/or tear
9. Laughter and tears, with spontaneous laughs escaping between gags
10. Riding a wave of laughter with consistent 8 and 9 type phenomena

Next gig December 3rd at ACE SPACE
Currently trying to work-up Christmas material
* Not ‘Dead on Arrival’ but a technical comedy term, ‘Died on Arse’

Typo of the day

I loved this blurb for a VERY nice set of Skis in Decathlon. Made me laugh when I spotted it in the Oxford store. Typos are normally only mildy amusing but this one is genius, in mis-typing ‘power,’ a deeper reality is revealed.
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Too expensive for me so it’ll be the hire skis that I’ll rely on to transfer this poser onto the edges!