Courtesy of Rachel Mann, the @metalvicar
Suppliers of traditional Christmas presents for clergy had a lucky escape when the Church of England’s new Onesie Vestments were launched a critical few weeks too late, missing out on Christmas sales completely.
“We were very afraid that sales of our traditional ‘tat for clergy’ presents would be hit by the clerical Onesies,” explained Mervin Stoat of Tat for Clergy, supplier of dubious clergy-gift classics such as World’s Coolest Vicar lapel buttons, Jesus Saves piggy banks, My other shirt has a dog collar on it T-shirts, Quick – look busy! It’s the Archdeacon! hoodies and the Pope on a Rope Soap, “but thankfully there was a production delay while the House of Clergy argued about the designs.”
The Onesies have indeed proved controversial, with accusations that it would be unfair for rural priests in particular to snuggle within thermally-lined, all-in-one garments during the winter months while their congregations watched their breath condense and then freeze into particles of light hail. Some dissent was also expressed regarding the appearance of the chasuble in the Onesie arrangement which some claim would make a priest look as though they were wearing a wing-suit. “Personally, I don’t see what all the fuss is about,” said Rev’d Rock Northerner, who was already developing plans to incorporate a swooping entrance from a flaming bell tower by wing-suit onto a waiting Harley Davidson as a processional for his alternative extreme-sport liturgy.
Rural priests are especially keen on the new designs due not only to their thermal properties but also to their integrated catheter and urine storage system. “Nipping round the back of church to bob down among the holly bushes will be a thing of the past.” commented Rev. Penny Walnut-Bladder, “It was no joke: coffee after each of five morning services in the Benefice and no internal plumbing in any of the churches.”
The new vestments will be available in a variety of liturgical hues, but designers have taken great pains to avoid using the exact Pantone colour of any of the Teletubbies.
Fans of the Church of England are expected to stay up until Midnight on December 31st to witness the regeneration of Doctor Rowan Williams into the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury.
Eschewing a Christmas Day Special, the C of E opted for a midnight event on the brink of a New Year for the transition between the 104th Prime Lord and his successor. Controversially, the new Prime Lord of the Church of England is not a Doctor and is not expected to have a female Bishop as a travelling companion (at least for his first few series).
It is expected that the Church of England will begin marketing figurines of the new Archbishop early in 2013, together with updated versions of his trademark Sonic Crozier and unique travelling machine the TARDIS (Theological And Reflective Discussions In Synod).
Hilarious work from Adam Buxton on Songs of Praise
According to its mission statement, Sidling Sideways in Faith seeks to position itself “equidistant between every single other faction within the Church of England” and promotes the “polite, unobtrusive sidling-around and side-stepping of every ecclesiastical issue of the day”.
Reverend Nice says he is greatly looking forward to taking up his new post and believes that the group’s work is important. “Our affiliated parishes don’t want to be one of those annoying churches who make people uncomfortable,” he explains. “so we are for those who seek to avoid associating themselves with WATCH, Reform, Forward in Faith, Anglican Mainstream, Inclusive Church, Church Action on Poverty, the Evangelical Alliance, Affirming Catholicism or indeed any group with a strong set of opinions about anything.”
The new Director of Sidling Sideways in Faith will take up his post as soon as he is released from his current position as Chamberlain-wrangler of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Eyebrows, a rarely-necessary and largely heraldic post which looks likely to fall dormant once Rowan Williams steps down.
Following the introduction of additional Eucharistic Prayers for Children in September, November will see the Liturgical Commission launch Eucharistic Prayers which target other demographic groups.
The most controversial is likely to be the Eucharistic Prayer for People Who Can’t Abide the Vicar of Dibley. “This is much needed,” said commission member Canon Brian E. Taylor, “for all those who really cannot focus on the Lord’s table whilst recalling the mis-spelling of St. Barnabus (“it’s BarnabAs – with an A” is a line from the new prayer), and their infuriation with a series which presented the Church of England as little more than a cosy bag of cute, clawless kittens.”
Chloe Finkly, aged 4, commented, “I think it’s great that grumpy grown-ups get their own prayers. Church isn’t just for us kids.” before continuing as she belted the pew in front with Peppa Pig, “Why don’t dogs come to church?”