A long time ago in an office far, far away I wrote a sketch to try to illustrate the breadth of what Home Mission (BUGB’s mission fund) does. If you would like to see it you can see a fuzzy version on YouTube. It’s a bit out of date now as some of the resources mentioned are no longer available (and I was wrong about the pensions staff being paid for by HM – they were paid for from the pensions scheme). But I think the general principle still holds true that Home Mission is used in many imaginative and helpful ways that many churches are unaware of.
However, this is not intended to be a promo for Home Mission or for my sketch. You see there was an unexpected spin off from that sketch. I was asked if I would like to write a series of short thoughts from Mr Grenville-Stubbs that would be provocative pieces in the quarterly mailing sent out from Baptist House. I decided to call them ‘View from my pew by Mr Grenville Stubbs’ and happily wrote a couple of them.
Sadly for different reasons they never made it into print (perhaps Mr Grenville Stubbs was a bit too close to the truth and people might not realise it was satire?!). However, bearing in mind that this is satire, and that it is NOT based on any person, living or dead, and that any similarity is coincidental, I have decided to start releasing View from my pew into the wild. Today is the first one – written in 2004!
I’m feeling quite proud. You may remember me from my successful campaign at our church, Upson Downs Baptist Church, to keep the colour of the Baptismal towels a tasteful pale blue – to match our teacups. It was videoed and broadcast across the denomination, I was so proud!
I had to run the campaign single-handed, as no-one else was able to grasp just how important it is that we have a common colour-scheme. I must admit I was rather disappointed at how frustrated our minister got at my four points of order and five amendments, but in the end I wore him down. I felt a bit like John the Baptist: “a voice calling in the wilderness”. Still, a prophet is without honour in his own church meeting.
Well, I have had another success. The church was planning to get rid of the hymnbooks in favour of putting all the words on the new-fangled video projector we’ve got. I argued long and hard to keep the books and get rid of the projector. After all, Sacred Songs and Sea Shanties is a classic, and the books will soon have antique value, which is something the projector will never have.
I stood firm and told the church meeting, “You’ll get rid of those books over my dead body.” I was less than impressed when someone suggested they accept the offer!
Still, they did agree to keep the books and that if they ever sang hymns from Sacred Songs and Sea Shanties again the minister said they would blow the dust off and get them out. Tradition one, technology nil!
Be blessed, be a blessing