Posts Tagged ‘St Paul’s’

Afternoon and evening in London

November 4, 2015

I travelled to London later than I wished.

Where to eat?

Food for Thought sadly no more, not a Friday, no street food market on the South Bank.

I had a couple of king prawns, chicken in dumplings, from Wasiba at Waterloo Station. Excellent.

But I was still hungry.

I headed to The Black Penny, a coffee shop. Rare beef in bread was excellent, though I did not like the mustard. Their coffee is not good, though not disgusting like Costa or Starbucks. Their apple juice in little jars is excellent.

Walk down to High Holborn, a couple of stops on the Central Line to St Paul’s.

Rush hour insanity.

St Paul’s for Paul Mason discussing his book PostCapitalism.

Bus outside St Paul’s, direct to Waterloo Station.

PostCapitalism: Envisaging a Shared Future

November 3, 2015
St Paul's Cathedral

St Paul’s Cathedral

Paul Mason signing PostCapitalism

Paul Mason signing PostCapitalism

Paul Mason discussing PostCapitalism, the conclusions of a shared economy not the analysis, at St Paul’s in the City of London, under the auspices of St Paul’s Institute.

St Paul’s within the heart of the City of London. Does capitalism have a heart?

A couple of years ago, Occupy were camped outside offering a different narrative.

Capitalism is a complex system. Every complex system adapts to its environment, and in doing so, modifies its environment. There comes though a point when it can no longer adapt, it breaks downs, flips to another state, dies and its niche occupied by another complex system.

Below St Paul’s, lies a Roman Temple dedicated to Diana. St Paul’s is built on the site of a medieval cathedral.

The Roman Temple was built by military occupiers, probably using slave labour. The medieval cathedral by a feudal system. Wren’s St Paul’s built by mercantile capital.

Capitalism is not set in stone, though the City of London would have us believe so. Mercantile capitalism was followed by industrial capitalism, now we have financial capitalism.

Capital used to finance innovation, invest in productive systems, this generated wealth, from which we all benefited. Now we have financial capitalism, money is invested to create money, silly money chases silly projects like Uber and AirBnB.

Post-WWII we had growth through the 1950s and 1960s. It came to an abrupt end in 1973.

We are seeing boom and bust, bubbles, but no real growth. Crisis follows crisis. We are not seeing innovation.

Marxist Theory of Value, land, capital and labour, determines price. We now have a fourth factor, knowledge, intellectual property.

We have global monopolies, the like of which we have never seen. Companies like Apple. It costs 99 cents to download a track, because that is what Apple says it will cost. It is not determined by the market. Same applies to an iPhone. Apple uses its monopoly position to determine the price.

But this is not sustainable. Knowledge is free, it can be freely reproduced.

Check out FairPhone, or One Plus One or One Plus Two. Contrast with the latest offering from Apple or Samsung.

The price of stuff is tending to zero. Price is a signal on which the market functions. If the price is zero, the market can not function.

We need to move to open co-ops, a sharing, collaborative, gift economy, where we all contribute to the global commons, and draw upon the global commons.

Linux was created by collaborative effort, as was Apache. The internet runs on Linux and Apache, on Open Source Software, the world’s supercomputers run on Linux.

We can achieve more through collaboration, sharing, cooperating. Hierarchical systems are not efficient cannot easily adapt, networked systems are efficient, can rapidly adapt.

The share of wages of the global economy is declining. It is being driven by credit, confected money. If workers lack money in their pocket to spend, we are heading to crunch time.

Many jobs are robotic in nature can and should be replaced by robots. Freeing people to pursue more productive lives. This would necessitate a Basic Wage, sufficient to live on.

Agora is a bar in a quiet plaza in Puerto de la Cruz in Tenerife. It is difficult to sit on ones own, people draw one into their conservations. These are externalities, which makes Agora an interesting place to be. Agora benefits because sells more drinks. Contrast this with facebook, we all contribute, we are the product, we produce the content,  facebook then profits, it captures and privatises the externalities.

Ann Pettifor gave a synopsis of PostCapitalism, but in her criticism, showed she had read but not understood. She confused Uber and AirBnB with the sharing economy. A common mistake.

Uber is a cowboy, unregulated taxi operation which offers unfair competition to legitimate taxi operators. The drivers take all the risks, Uber creams off the profits, and pays no tax.

Uber is often used as an example for what is referred to as the sharing economy, but in reality, and and there are many other examples, we have surfs working for apps.

Ann Pettifor is correct to raise her grave concern at this rapidly growing sector of the economy, but should not confuse it with the sharing gift economy, collaborative commons.

Phillip Blond seemed to have completely lost the plot. He talked of morality, bringing justice and fair play into the world. He did not understand the concept of artificial scarcity, monopoly, which forces up the price of what should be freely available. He talked of expensive art. His point though that all could be producers, was relevant. In the sharing, collaborative commons, we all have the opportunity to become producers and consumers, often making our own unique contribution.

Elizabeth Oldfield chaired the meeting. One of her rare interjections was to ask Ann Pettifor the meaning of rentier economy. Earning money from money, not from hard graft, getting your hands dirty, not from labour or the land.

Why is your book not free?

A good question. When we create, we draw upon what went before. Working for the Channel 4 and before that the BBC, public money has paid for the work.

We could also ask, why Penguin, why a big corporate publisher? Why not Zed Books, a small publisher, a co-operative, is that not more in keeping with the ideals of PostCapitalism? The Global Minotour is published by Zed Books, as is Change Everything. Or why not publish Unbound Books, which crowd funds books? It could be argued exposure, Penguin gets books on the shelves. But does not a book like PostCapitalism spread by word of mouth?

A hardback, a real book, real costs, paper, trees, shipping, warehousing, shelving, booksellers. With an e-book, the costs are zero. The costs of the servers written off years ago. Robots convert to appropriate download formats. Any publisher that charges more than a pound is blatantly ripping people off.

hardback

  • Foyles — £16-99
  • Guardian Live — £15-00
  • Penguin — £14-00
  • Amazon — £11-89

e-book

  • Kindle — £9-99
  • Kobo — £9-99
  • Google Play — £9-99

A couple of years ago, Paulo Coelho offered his entire back catalogue at 99 cents an e-book, a book for the price of a song. Downloads shot up by several thousand percent.

Jeremy Rifkin received a lot of stick for the high price for the e-book of The Zero Marginal Cost Society, a book the entire thesis the collaborative economy and the cost of stuff tending to zero.

Contrast with Sacred Economics, available for free download, pay what you wish, accept it as a gift from the author. What will you gift in return?

Or Europe after the Minotaur, an update of The Global Minotaur, available as a free download.

Phillip Blond spoke of friendship.

In the sharing economy, everything has a story, a social interaction involved. Not an anonymous purchase in exchange for cash.

I gave a friend a special 25th anniversary limited edition of The Alchemist. I have never before seen someone jump for joy. She did, when she looked inside and saw it was signed, not only signed but signed to her. She could not contain her joy, she ran across the road to tell her mother.

Would she have had the same joy had she bought a copy for cash? Yes, she would have had the pleasure of reading but one copy would be no different to another, replaceable if you have the cash.

If I go away, I do not load a Kobo Reader (far better than Kindle), I take real books. When I have read, I give them away.

I have bought four copies of PostCapitalism. I gave my orignal copy away to my friend. Ten days ago, on my way to Yanis Varoufakis in conversation with Paul Mason, I bought a copy of PostCapitalism to replace the one I had given away. At the venue I bought a copy, then a second copy, of The Global Minotaur. Sadly I did not get them signed. This evening, I brought along my copy of PostCapitalism, and bought two more. One signed for me, two to be given away as gifts.

Having bought four copies, should I not be entitled to free e-books?

Every book should have a unique code, use it to download the e-book. You have already paid for the book, the only difference is the format within which you read the book.

If I give my work away free, should others profit from my work?

Michel Bauwens, founder of P2P Foundation and leading advocate of the sharing economy, has suggested a new type of  licencing agreement. Contribute to the commons, from which all can freely draw, but if for-profit draw then they pay a contribution.

Those not familiar with the sharing, collaborative economy, are dismissive, think it will not work, they often give music as an example, people will not pay they will abuse the system.

Bandcamp shows they are wrong. Musicians will release their work, often at low price with people opting to pay what they think it is worth. Fans will willingly pay more than the asking price.

Sita Sings the Blues was released without the usual copyright restrictions. People can show, they are trusted to pay the producer.

In the spirit of the gift economy, tickets were free. Less than one hundred tickets still available the day before. On the night, not a single ticket left, 2,500 people. What will be their contribution to the gift economy, having accepted a gift? Mine, you have just read.

An ideal follow up meeting would be Paul Mason in conversation with Michel Bauwens discussing the sharing, collaborative economy.

Paul Mason is author of PostCapitalism and economics editor of Channel 4 news.

St Paul’s sunrise

January 10, 2015
St Paul's sunrise

St Paul’s sunrise

Sunrise St Paul’s Cathedral a few days ago.

To the left, the Central Criminal Court, known to most as the Old Bailey. Justice, her arms outstretched, holds her sword and scales.

First anniversary of Occupy London

October 15, 2012
throw the money changers out of the temple

throw the money changers out of the temple

To mark the first anniversary of Occupy London and the Camp outside St Paul’s, four women chained themselves the altar rail at St Paul’s last night during evensong.

What has the church done in the last year to fight poverty?

From my own observations, nothing.

Oh St Pauls, why?

December 30, 2011

And making a whip of cords, he drove them all, with the sheep and oxen, out of the temple; and he poured out the coins of the money-changers and overturned their tables. — John 2:15

Oh St Pauls, why?

o cathedral what have u done?
where has ur christianity run?
what would jesus do i ask?
faced with the chapters awkward task.

what to with all those tents?
support them or charge them rent?
who can blame them to be fair,
with so much injustice everywhere.

ppl sleeping in the cold,
while the cathedral resorts to crimes untold,
lying in court,
shaming their kind,

leaving the values of jesus behind.
crucifying jesus with every action,
forgetting that they create such sad reactions,
well with Goldman Sachs on the board of trustees,
and hsbc robbing oaps……

such unethical corps pulling the strings,
makes a sickening situation as the bell rings,
huge wooden doors and hearts much the same,
but if i may ask?who is to blame?

o cathedral what have u done?
why have u allowed such evil to run?
why do you not just do as god says,
and act justly and truthfully in all your ways?

no legal action says ur chapter and staff,
but i heard it in court,don’t make me laugh,
not one kind word for us did i hear,
when the witness you sent spouted crap down my ears,

I couldn’t believe it
that I admit
I sat there and thought
“is this really it

is this religious cathedral this huge house of god,
going to stand their and lie,it was rather odd!
o dear cathedral on the 11th jan,
the violence u didn’t want will happen’
partly at ur hands.

— Tammy Samede

Tammy Samede is the named defendant for Occupy LSX, she is also a mother of four and a christian at heart, recently she has felt dissillusioned and discusted by some of the actions of the church and their activities in the financial industry. The occupy movement has shaken the heart of the church and forced it in to questioning its moral standing. We await to see which side of the line the church will stand when the time for eviction comes.

Originally posted on Farang Rak Thailand.

Contrary to the smears in the media, it is not and never has been the camp v St Paul’s, but for perverse reasons not known the Registrar of St Paul’s decided to give evidence on behalf of the City of London against the camp.

Top story Occupy Global and Local LSE (Saturday 31 December 2011).

The origins of Christmas

December 26, 2011
icon of Emperor Constantine with Nicene Creed

icon of Emperor Constantine with Nicene Creed

The Visitation in the Book of Hours of the Duc de Berry; the Magnificat in Latin

The Visitation in the Book of Hours of the Duc de Berry; the Magnificat in Latin

Statue of the Visitation at the Ein Karem Church of the Visitation

Statue of the Visitation at the Ein Karem Church of the Visitation

If you had spoken to early Christians of the celebration of Christmas they would have looked at you perplexed, worse still in horror, the celebration of the birthday of a God was something Pagans did.

There was not even a date in the Christian calendar!

The Gospels are silent on the date of the Birth of Jesus, though there are hints. The shepherds were tending their flocks at night, would place it sometime in the spring.

Christmas was invented by the Roman Emperor Constantine in 312 AD when he converted to Christianity.

Constantine saw a fiery cross in the sky. Were he to convert, it would lead him to military victory.

Constantine adopted an existing Pagan festival, that of the Winter Solstice, which then was 25 December.

It is easier to get people to celebrate an existing festival with a new name, than to create a new festival.

Rome was being torn apart by warring factions. One such faction was Christians.

Christianity was adopted as the official religion of Rome with Constantine as head of the church. Christianity went from being oppressed to being the oppressor. The might of the state which was used against Christians was now deployed against their enemies.

Christianity became the religion of Empire, a military empire.

But that was not all, Constantine reinvented Christianity, the focus changed.

Giles Fraser:

By marginalising Christ’s teachings about poverty, humility, and above all peace, Constantine was able to take a religion founded in pacifism and use it for his military machine in pursuit of a ‘just war’ – something political leaders have been doing ever since.

Christianity under Constantine changed from the religion of the poor and dispossessed to that of the rich and powerful, from the oppressed to the oppressors, it became the religion of the ruling class.

Religion the tool to control the people.

One God, one powerful ruler who represents God on Earth.

During the reign of Constantine Christianity becomes very visible. It emerges from the Catacombs to erect great churches.

Constantine dispatched his mother Helen to locate the place of Birth and Death of Jesus and ordered that churches be built richly decorated to mark the locations.

The First Council of Nicea (325 AD), under the patronage of Constantine, draw up the Nicene Creed. A gathering of Bishops to draw up a declaration they could all sign up to.

We believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of all things visible and invisible.
And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, begotten of the Father the only-begotten; that is, of the essence of the Father, God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father;
By whom all things were made both in heaven and on earth;
Who for us men, and for our salvation, came down and was incarnate and was made man;
He suffered, and the third day he rose again, ascended into heaven;
From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
And in the Holy Ghost.

It was thought the First Council of Nicea had setted matters. It had not.

The First Council of Constantinople 381 AD was called under Emperor Theodosius. It was this Council which defined what we regard as the Nicene Creed today.

The Nicene Creed, official statement of what it is to be a Christian. Still read in Churches today. It was read when I went to Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve, Canon Andrew White cites it in Faith under Fire.

Midnight Mass at St John’s

The Nicene Creed jumps from birth to death, no mention of radical teachings. Christianity adapted to suit Empire.

Contrast with Mary’s Magnificat (Book of Common Prayer):

My soul doth magnify the Lord : and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.
For he hath regarded : the lowliness of his handmaiden.
For behold, from henceforth : all generations shall call me blessed.
For he that is mighty hath magnified me : and holy is his Name.
And his mercy is on them that fear him : throughout all generations.
He hath shewed strength with his arm : he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
He hath put down the mighty from their seat : and hath exalted the humble and meek.
He hath filled the hungry with good things : and the rich he hath sent empty away.
He remembering his mercy hath holpen his servant Israel : as he promised to our forefathers, Abraham and his seed for ever.

Several Councils were held. There were four main centres of Christianity: Rome, Antioch, Alexandria and Constantinople. All vied as centres as power, much blood was shed, as to what form Christianity would take.

Jesus welcomed all: the rich the poor, men and women, Jews and Gentiles, of whatever race and creed. Christians did not serve in the Roman Empire. All changed with the conversion of Constantine.

On Christmas Day, former Canon Chancellor of St Paul’s Cathedral Giles Fraser presented a very moving documentary on earlier Christianity and the impact of Emperor Constantine. BBC as usual shoots itself in the foot and it is only available on-line for seven days.

Constantine: The Man Who Invented Christmas

What we think of as the traditional Nativity scene, draws upon but is not of the Gospels, was invented by St Francis of Assisi in 1223, when he created a tableau in a cave of Jesus in a manger, animals looking on. In the Old Testament we can find prophecy of this scene.

As a descendent of the Royal House of David, Jesus could have been born in a royal palace, he was not, he was born in a stable. A man of humble birth, born a stable with the animals looking on.

St Paul’s had a steep learning curve when the camp arrived. St Paul’s was closed for a week under bogus health and safety grounds. The clergy, with the noticeable exception of the Registrar who prefers to act for power, has been forced to re-examine what they are here for. They are now working closely with the camp, to go back to the origins of Christianity, to act on the teachings of Jesus, to act for the poor, the dispossessed.

Those who can, have long fled Iraq. Those left are the poor and dispossessed. When all is lost, faith is all that is left.

Lord Hylton on a visit to Baghdad described St George’s as a church of the future. A church that welcomes everyone and everyone is made welcome, be they Catholic, Protestant or Orthodox, be they Christian or Muslim, where everyone is loved and shares their love. A place where angels appear. A place of peace and tranquillity in a war-torn country.

Top story News For and About Emerging Artists (Monday 26 December 2011)

– Jesus Wars
The Mary We Never Knew
Occupy London presents a reading of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol – 6pm Friday 30 December at the steps of St. Paul’s Cathedral

Jesus was born in an empty building

December 24, 2011

Brilliant poetry reading on the life of Jesus at St Paul’s in-the-Camp.

Jesus was a protester by Catherine Brogan.

For Lina to bring a smile to her face.

Top story SPOT – a poetry paper (Friday 24 December 2011).

The Nativity of Our Lord

December 23, 2011

A reading from the Holy Gospel according to John

And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.

Please be seated.

In this passage at the beginning of John’s Gospel the Greek word for ‘dwelt among us’ – skenoo – is more literally translated as ‘tabernacled’ or ‘tented among us’. It’s also an echo of the Hebrew word for tent – mishkan or ‘place of encampment’, which contains the root meanings shekhinah (‘divine presence’) and shakhan (‘neighbour’).

John is telling us that, with the birth of Jesus, God is pitching his tent among us, as he had previously done in the midst of the people of Israel in the wilderness. He’s on the move again, exposed just as we are to the elements, to the powers and principalities, to the unruly fathoms of the human heart. Christians usually lump this lot together as Sin.

It’s a very rich semantic field, this verse from John.

capitalism is crisis

capitalism is crisis

It’s almost as rich as the field of meaning in the encampment around the Cathedral Church of St Paul’s in the City of London. And because preaching a Word at Christmas, amidst the surfeit of festive cheer, is not an easy thing to do, I decide to take the 76 bus from Hackney into the City to go and visit the tent people for some inspiration.

The bus passes the Finsbury Square encampment, which now looks like the morning-after-the-party. It’s become a field of mud with a deserted ‘info tent’ and a sign, fallen over in the breeze, offering ‘free hugs’ – but with no indication of any happy huggers to dispense them. The bus continues through the City, sloping along the wall of the Bank of England, and then loops round beside the Cathedral itself. I stay on and get out at the Royal Courts of Justice.

This is where the City of London Corporation is making its case in the High Court to rid itself of the campers. The City says that it does not object to lawful protest, but that it does not consider that the tents themselves are a necessary part of the protest. It says they are an obstruction on the public highway and they need to be removed.

sorry for inconveneince

sorry for inconveneince

I arrive just in time to hear the camp’s barrister cross examine the Registrar of the Cathedral (the chief administrator), Nicholas Cottam, who has been called as a witness in support of the City’s case for eviction.

Mr Cottam, a former Major General, says that he wishes to remain neutral in relation to the substantive issues raised by the camp, but that he has been particularly agitated from the start about the hazards of fire (amongst the other health and safety concerns). He says that, given the location of the tents and the emergency service’s reliance on Sat Nav devices, the fire brigade would be confounded by the camp were they ever required to extinguish a blaze in the burning building.

Maybe it is understandable that the administrator for Wren’s cathedral, which emerged from the cinders of the Fire of London, should be peculiarly sensitive to these incendiary dangers.

But the counsel for the campers is not entirely satisfied:

“A place of worship does not need to be wrapped up in metaphorical protective clothing does it?” he says in that leading way that barristers have, “the cathedral is surely a working building.”

“It is not a working building,” says Mr Cottam, “It is a sacred space – a place of sacred worship and respect.”

But what of ‘liturgy’, commonly understood as ‘the work of the people’, that is at the heart of that collective experience of sacred worship? Has London’s original dome become simply a grand mausoleum for state ceremonial performing cultic rituals of order and control? Have we forgotten that the building is itself no more than a big top with some fancy equestrian statues and a great acoustic?

When we identify too closely with these physical pillars we are in danger of taking our eyes from that pillar of fire that led the Israelites through the wilderness and will lead us also through the dark days ahead. To follow this fire we need to be ready to pitch and strike our inner Tent.

We have something to learn here from Jews who, annually at the feast of Sukkot, the feast of Tabernacles (or Tents), remind themselves of their years in the wilderness; that they are a people on the move.

If the camp is a judgment on the Church, recalling us to our biblical roots, it also a judgment on the City of London Corporation.

Occupy St Pauls’ daily General Assembly brings to mind the Saxon folk-moot that gathered at St Paul’s Cross in the churchyard of the Cathedral. This is where the City of London Corporation has its origins. This is where the Citizens of London historically deliberated on matters of common concern, in the lee of the Cathedral, and it is where they elected their Portreve, the office that became the Mayor after 1189, as well as their Chamberlain, the man responsible for the money.

bankers need hugs not bonuses

bankers need hugs not bonuses

Although the current High Court action to evict the tent people is lodged in the name of the “Lord Mayor, Commonalty and Citizens of London” – legally a body corporate, constitutionally representing a balance of interests amongst the Citizenry – in much of its operational life the City Corporation has come to represent the single interest of capital.

And so we have a situation in which the oldest democratic institution in the world has now become a lobby group for the financial services, the ‘business city’.

“We have no ‘authority’ to take on this role [promoting the business city],” concedes Stuart Fraser (the current Chairman of the City’s Policy and Resources Committee) in an exchange of letters with me at the time when I was also a City Councillor, “which is why it is funded from our private funds – City Cash.”

No one knows for sure how much money is in this particular pot because the City Corporation refuses to publish the accounts. The City puts the total equity amount in the Cash at around £1 billion. Some say, however, the funds are at least double that. As the consolidated accounts below show there is about £500M tied up in cash. Because the City doesn’t put a value on its vast property portfolio these figures are all speculative and more work still needs to be done on unravelling these accounts.

But how can money held in trust for the Citizens of London be considered ‘private’ money? And on what grounds can it be used to promote the ‘business city’, a role the Chairman of Policy concedes the City Corporation has no ‘authority’ to perform, beyond that which it gives itself and that which Parliament, in turn, allows?

Statements of accounts are not just financial ledgers. They are also moral documents. They reveal our priorities and expose our commitments. Our January credit card statements bear witness to this. The City of London Corporation should not be fearful of publishing the Cash Accounts.

The Gospel writer’s story of the Word ‘dwelling among us’ is also a judgement on our well-defended distinctions between what is private and what is public.

In this new age we are called to participate in a common life where we belong to one another in mutual dependence and with mutual accountability. At times this may be place of windy exposure and vulnerability. It’s a campsite.

If we let them do so the tents may remind both the Cathedral and the City of our origins.

But in the end they will be swept away.

In the end we will all be swept away. There is no abiding city.

For now let’s remember faithfully, with grace and truth, where we have come from and whose we are and be thankful.

And all for His sake.

The End is Nigh

The End is Nigh

Posted by Father William Taylor on his blog Hackney Preacher.

Father William Taylor is a rare example of an ordinary person who has served as a councillor, what is known as a Common Councillor, in the Rotten Borough of the City of London. A secretive organisation that lobbies on behalf of City of London banks, that sits on a massive cash pile and property portfolio.

Father William Taylor has shed a little light into this undemocratic black hole by publishing the accounts.

Guest post: City Cash by Fr. William Taylor

We got it wrong admit St Paul’s

November 3, 2011
Dean of St Paul's and Bishop of London at St Paul's in-the-Camp

Dean of St Paul's and Bishop of London at St Paul's in-the-Camp

The dean and chapter were clearly wrongly advised and I don’t know why they took the decision to close the cathedral – some of my clergy were down there doing flash mob evening services among the tents. — Right Rev Pete Broadbent, Bishop of Willesden

The symbolism of the closed door was the wrong symbol. — Richard Chartres, Bishop of London

All Saints be praised! Clergy at St Paul’s Cathedral handing leaflets to Occupy London Stock Exchange inviting them to All Souls Durufle requiem at 5pm. — Ruth Gledhill

People want to think about finance “in the context of ethics and morality and God. — Bishop of London Dr Richard Chartres

The church shouldn’t just be supporting this, it should be part of it. — David Jennings, canon theologian at Leicester Cathedral

God works in mysterious ways. One path is blocked, another opens. Things happen.

Occupy London Stock Exchange had not intended to camp outside St Paul’s.

Contrary to the nonsense in the mainstream media, there is not a conflict between the camp and St Paul’s and never was.

Why was St Paul’s closed for a week? No one knows. The best that can be said is that they were ill-advised.

If you are in a hole, stop digging.

The clergy at St Paul’s were advised they could not talk to the camp because of impending legal action against the camp.

The Bishop of London and the clergy at St Paul’s had the good grace and humility to admit they were wrong. They suspended their legal action. The Bishop led the clergy out of St Paul’s and into the camp to cheers from the camp.

Yesterday the clergy were in the camp, invitations were issued to attend All Souls Durufle requiem that evening.

Once St Paul’s had made their decision to suspend legal action, the City of London suspended their legal action too. Not only that, they were in the camp talking to people.

As I think it was Churchill who said: jaw jaw is always better than war war.

A group has been formed headed by Ken Costa, a former top investment banker, with the aim of “reconnecting the financial with the ethical”. This will also involve Giles Fraser, the Canon Chancellor at St Paul’s, who stepped down last week over concerns that the cathedral’s support for eviction could see it complicit in eventual violence. Ken Costa has already visited the camp.

St Paul’s in-the-Camp has energised the wider church like nothing since the Crucifixion and Resurrection.

Clergy have been working in the camp since it was started.

The irony is that St Paul’s initially welcomed the camp, said they were welcome and asked the police to stay away.

Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams has also joined in the call for social justice.

Bishop of London moves to dissociate church from St Paul’s legal action
Big tent church: clerics across England lean on side of the angels
St Paul’s and Corporation of London halt legal action against Occupy camp
Occupy London protesters celebrate after winning eviction battle
Time for us to challenge the idols of high finance
Rowan Williams: St Paul’s protest has ‘triggered awareness’
Archbishop of Canterbury backs new finance tax

Resignation of the Dean of St Paul’s

November 1, 2011

Yesterday I heard the sad news that the second senior cleric at St Paul’s had resigned. The Dean of St Paul’s the Rt Rev Graeme Knowles had resigned.

St Paul’s Dean Graeme Knowles resigns over protests
Archbishop’s statement on resignation of the Dean of St Paul’s
Occupy London responds to resignation of the Dean of St Paul’s

No one has called upon these senior clerics, certainly not those camped outside.

The good news today is that St Paul’s has suspended legal action against those camped outside.

St Paul’s suspends legal action against Occupy London protest
St Paul’s suspends legal action against protest camp

Front page of The Times today has a claim that St Paul’s in-the-Camp is a site of drink and drugs, that the people there do not know why they are there and that they are high on drink and drugs. This it is claimed was the situation Saturday. Simply not true, but then does anyone expect the truth from corporate mainstream media, especially when owned and controlled by the Murdoch Empire?

Pandora and I were there Saturday afternoon and evening. People there were very articulate, polite, helpful and well informed. There was a wonderful atmosphere and it was not fueled by drink or drugs.

The atmosphere was in part due to the Christian spirit.

Sermon on the Steps at St Paul’s in-the-Camp
Evensong at St Paul’s

Yipee! City of London also suspends legal action!

St Paul’s u-turn: Tent city protesters told they can carry on camping

Contrary to the nonsense in the Evening Standard, there are no ringleaders.