River Wissey Lovell Fuller

A Religious Theme

July 2002

Les takes a discerning look at the class system

I have been reading recently about a Vicar who needed a double heart bypass and had got to wait a year for the operation on the NHS. Unbeknown to him his Parishioners raised the required £15000 so he could go private and have the operation straight away. Now on the face of it this is indeed brilliant stuff but to me it raises a number of questions. What would happen if someone in that Congregation who was a little bit lower down the pecking order found themselves in the same situation; what then? Am I wearing my cynical hat at the moment?

What's all this about the 'pecking order'? Surely we are not bringing class in to this? And yet my cynicism tell me we are. Would old farm worker 'Bill' have got the same treatment? I'm not sure about that; or put it another way, oh yes I am. Taking off my cynical hat it has to be said that here was a Vicar who it would seem was well-known and well liked and full marks to him. Yes you are right I seem to be leading up to something and it's this. I am now, as some disconcerting readers will know.... Now, just a minute can we stop there. This word 'Disconcerting' it's not the right word is it? According to my dictionary that word means 'Deranged or Ruffled'. The word I should use is Discerning' which means Distinguishing'. You look it up and see for yourself. Well I'm sticking to my word Disconcerting' because I'm addressing my remarks to all of you out there who must be somewhat deranged and ruffled otherwise you wouldn't be wasting your time reading this lot.

Back if we may to the Vicar. Well as you know, I now go to Chapel every Sunday and I have to confess well, if I could interrupt myself again, I just wish I had something worth confessing; but that's another story. What I have to confess is that Vicars, Ministers and so on, worry me. I'm far from sure that they are 'Real' people. Have you ever seen such people coming out of a Supermarket, Pub, Dance Hall, and such places? Well I haven't. I use to play Snooker with a Vicar's Son and every time he used to miss a shot he would say, 'Dash'. I always used two words. Is this criticism of Vicars etc justified? I think it is. We will get far more people at Church or Chapel when they start, how can I put it, to be 'real' and no one would welcome this more than me. What could be more normal in my book than to be enjoying my pint in the Pub or Club when there's a tap on the shoulder and it's the Vicar saying, 'Didn't see you in Church last Sunday' would I be there next week, you bet, and so would others.

Les Lawrence

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