Thursday, 31 July 2008
A fellow blogger and colleague Sam Norton also posted some of the articles about SPCK that Dave had been forced to remove. Now Sam has been sent a cease and desist notice by Mark Brewer and this has been followed up by some pretty unpleasant emails from Brewer which I would argue are an attempt to silence free speech and fair comment. These communications are not simply a legal request they express opinions about Sam's character and behaviour as a priest. It seems to me Brewer is happy to indulge in attacks on the character of others while demanding no comment about his own actions or the organisation he represents, St Stephen the Great SSG, which is a registered charity in the U.K. I am therefore posting the link to Sam's blog containing the original material and the subsequent correspondance.
One of Mark Brewer's contentions is that he is a private citizen and that he does not want his details published as this is an invasion of his privacy. Here are details about Brewer and SSG which SSG publishes on its website.
Saint Stephen the Great Charitable Trust (Charity Registration No. 1119839-1) is an Orthodox lay charity which was established in 2004 to acquire redundant churches in order to put them into use for Orthodox Christian worship. Its objects also include spreading the Gospel message through distribution of the printed word; and supporting Orthodox Christian mission in the U.K.
In the ensuing 3 years, the Trust has acquired redundant churches in Dorset, West Yorkshire, County Durham, Suffolk, Norfolk and West Sussex. It has succeeded in putting these into use as Orthodox Christian Churches or is in the process of doing so. At least three of these buildings were due to be knocked down while a fourth was to be turned over to a wholly secular use.
In 2006, the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge transferred the entirety of its retail trading operations to Saint Stephen the Great Charitable Trust. Its charity registration number is 1119839.
Saint Stephen the Great Charitable Trust continues to identify redundant churches in order to acquire them and return them into places of worship. Acquiring even a redundant church can be an expensive and time-consuming process. For this reason, the Trust welcomes donations and contributions – both monetary and non-monetary. The Trust also welcomes referrals from the public about closed or redundant churches.
I hope this information is of help and interest to you and your organization. I welcome your support of our bookshop as well as your help and participation in the activities of Saint Stephen the Great Charitable Trust. Please feel free to contact me at your convenience.
J. Mark Brewer
Chairman and CEO
Saint Stephen the Great Charitable Trust
As you can see Brewer invites contact and this is the link to SSG's contact form on their website should you wish to express your concerns.
Sam and Dave please be assured of my continued support for you both at this time.
If you would like information about the background to all this Sam has posted a background briefing here.
Saturday, 26 July 2008
Below is another picture from the walk. This was taken in the underpass beneath the Great Leighs bypass. It was an unexpected glimpse of light and beauty in what is a rather unattractive construction.
Wednesday, 23 July 2008
Who's Posted about Mark Brewer's Cease and Desist Notice to Dave Walker
- St Aidan to Abbey Manor - David Keen - Vicar (Yeovil)
- The Wardman Wire - Matt Wardman (audio of BBC interview from 12/2007)
- Gentle Wisdom - Peter Kirk
- Bishop Alan's Blog - Alan Wilson, Area Bishop of Buckingham
- Blogula-Rasa - Ginny (detailed - worth a read)
- Metacatholic - Doug Chaplin - Vicar (West Midlands)
- Of course, I could be wrong - Madpriest - Priest (somewhere in England)
- Seven whole days - Scott Gunn - Parish Priest (Rhode Island) and Lambeth Conference.
- Thinking Anglicans - Simon Kershaw - Cambridge, England (likely to follow further press coverage)
- The Jewish Blog Network - How to recover deleted pages. Firefox Resurrect Pages add-on.
- Lingamish - Blogger Bludgeoned by Bozos - David Ker - Mozambique. Kudos for the cartoon above.
- [Update: 23/07/2008] SPCK Watch - Gagging attempts by Mark Brewer - SPCK Watch. (Somewhere in Europe). Whole blog devoted to SPCK saga.
- [Update: 23/07/2008] Elizaphanian - We are all Dave Walkers now - Sam Norton, Rector of West Mersea, Essex. Suggests that we reposts Dave's ex-posts from Google Cache
- [Update: 23/07/2008]Mad Hare - Solidarity post - SPCK/SSG and Dave Walker (New Mexico : United States).
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]The Cartoon Blog - Cease and Desist Demand from Mark Brewer Dave's original post - now gone
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]GOD, CHRIST: QUESTIONS & FAITH - More and More on the Exploding SPCK Story & Dave Walker's Cartoon Church Blog Check out the illustration from the 1950s
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]Saintly Ramblings - Dave Walker Solidarity Post
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]SPCK/SSG: News, Notes & Info - Comments on Moderation Expect comment when owner returns from holiday
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]PamBG's Blog - Those Christian Bookshops
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]Scatter Cushions - Nothing like like having an informed debate
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]connexions - Cartoon blogger silenced
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]Turbulent Cleric - Libel law used as censorship Reflections on the Craig Murray case
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]Exigency In Specie - Bullying the Bloggers Southern England
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]Asingleblog - Brewers are challenged in court More detail on the attempt to put SPCK UK into Chapter 11 in the USA
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]Philip's Tree House - I'm also Dave Walker
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]John Inbetween - Yet another Dave Walker
- [Update:24/07/2008 AM]Wormwood's Doxy - Because there's nothing I hate more than a bully....Standing up for Dave Walker & SPCK
The original copy of this list is on the Wardman Wire here.
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Attendances at events during the nine day festival varied with some packed out and others suffering from the bad weather. Highlights included The London Community Gospel Choir, Godspell, Yfriday, Paul Jones and Fiona Hendley Jones as well as a wide range of seminars exploring topics such as war, politics, law and adversity. The festival was sponsored by local churches and Chelmsford Borough Council.
Saturday, 19 July 2008
There is a powerful account of Cash’s childhood. As a young boy Cash’s brother was the one who knew his Bible and was hoping to become a minister while Cash was good at singing the old hymns he had learnt from his mother. When his brother dies in a tragic accident Cash is told by his father that God had taken the wrong son. This haunts Cash throughout the film as does the tension between his religious roots and the music business. There is a fascinating scene when Cash and his backing band audition for Sam Phillips at Sun Studios. Cash sings the gospel song I Was There When it Happened but is stopped by Phillips who tells him to sing a song he really feels. Beginning slowly and uncertainly Cash starts to sing Folsom Prison Blues and then as his confidence grows so the pace quickens until it reaches the familiar tempo of the record. It is on the strength of this performance that Cash and his band are given a recording contract. (I was interested to discover that a couple of years later Cash did record I Was There When it Happened and eventually left Phillips’ label because he wanted to record more gospel material.)
Throughout the film there is recognition of the debt that Cash and his contemporaries including Presley, Lee Lewis and others owe to their religious roots. There is also a frank portrayal of the effects that drug addiction had on Cash’s personality, relationships and music and the part that June Carter played in his recovery.
On her new album, All I Intended to Be, Emmylou Harris sings How She Could Sing The Wildwood Flower about the Carter family and it was this song that she performed with Buddy Miller on Later With Jools Holland earlier this year.
Tuesday, 15 July 2008
I also love the title: Stumble Into Grace. There are signs, tokens and images of grace all around us but they are so easy to ignore until we almost trip over them. Commenting on the opening track from her album called Here I Am Emmylou Harris says:
I thought I might use the theme Stumble Into Grace for some posts and if anyone wants to join in then please feel free.
Thursday, 10 July 2008
It was a special occasion for our family as my wife Kate received her CCS certificate. Altogether there were 65 CCS students, 7 Lay Evangelists and 12 Pastoral Assistants, supported by family, friends and members of their home churches
Bishop John prayed for those receiving certificates with the following words:
We thank you for your lively wisdom filling the earth,
For delight in your Word,
For growth in understanding,
And for all the work and friendship of our courses.
Pour your blessing on the students and tutors,
And on all your Church,
As we discover and proclaim in the world
Your gospel of love and service, justice and peace.
We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.
(Ernie Guest, Sandra Sykes, Jo Chambers, Bishop John, Kate Ritchie & Sharon Guest all former CCS students - except the bishop!)
Tuesday, 8 July 2008
(festival weather! Alison & Tim Hancock, Kate & Phil Ritchie)
Thursday, 3 July 2008
St Mellitus College is a new kind of academy, which offers training in Christian theology, ministry and the relationship between theology and the whole of human life. It was founded in 2007 by Richard Chartres and John Gladwin, the Anglican Bishops of London and
Alongside the teaching that happens at its centre, the College also aims to bring together and co-ordinate many excellent resources around the region. Other training institutions and communities are joining St Mellitus as associate members, offering their teaching and resources as part of the College, for example: The Kensington Deanery Ministry Scheme and The Trinity Foundation for Christianity and Culture.
Please pray for the college, staff and students at this very exciting time.
The St Mellitus College Collect
God of grace and wisdom,
who called your servant Mellitus
to leave his home and proclaim your Word:
grant to all who belong to the college that bears his name
diligence for study, fervour for mission,
and perseverance for ministry,
that they might shine with your love and truth
in these dioceses and beyond,
for the sake of your Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen.