Sunday, 27 September 2009


DH and I finally made it to our local Spiritualist Church on Saturday night, after several previous attempts to do so failed miserably, for one reason or another.

We arrived about five minutes before 7pm and took our seats towards the back in what was a reasonable full room - mostly women, of varying ages, with the occasional male dotted here and there. The main room walls are painted in a soothing shade of blue and there was a wooden lectern towards the middle area at the front, with another larger wooden stand to the left and a table further back. Three doorways were curtained with velvety curtains in a deeper blue shade of blue. A picture of Jesus was on the front wall and there were a few other things dotted around on the walls and a couple of flower arrangements here and there (probably silk). It had a nice atmosphere.

We noticed there were a few people at the front giving individual flowers to a lady who was obviously organising things and she placed these in a small box that was on the larger wooden stand. When everyone had taken their seats she closed the front door and took her place at the lectern, where she greeted everyone and introduced herself for the sake of new people joining them (us and a couple of others, I think) - unfortunately I can't remember her name. She then introduced another lady, who had come out from a room that was behind the curtained doorway to the left and taken a seat at the table - I think her name was Betty, who looked to be in her 50's or so, and she had a lovely lilting Scottish accent.

The service was opened with the Spiritualist hymn and a prayer (along the lines of the prayer that Aureen uses when she opens our Circle, but this one was patriarchal, it being a Christian church). We then had to stand to sing the first hymn....... and this was one of those odd moments that come up through your life that lets you know there's something more going on/a message being given. The hymn was "Fight the Good Fight". What was so odd about this? Well....... when my DBro, DSis and myself were talking to the chap from the Funeral Home, planning our Dad's funeral, he asked what hymn we would like to have sung. The three of us looked at each other but hesitated to say anything - then my DBro said he'd just had the name of one hymn pop into his head. We looked at each other again and the three of us said "Fight the Good Fight". The FH chap said it was slightly unusual for a funeral but he'd had much stranger requests and was happy to arrange it. Later, when talking to the Lay Preacher from the church she also said she thought it was an unusual one for a funeral but had thought again when she sat and read the words again. As we explained to both of them: Dad had been a fighter all his life - not literally, but in that he didn't let his lousy upbringing keep him back and he made a good life for himself and us, his family, and he never let anything or anyone keep him down for long....... and when the cancer struck he put up a bloody good fight right up until the end. It was appropriate.

This was the first time since the funeral that I'd heard this hymn. Let's just say I didn't get to sing much of it and it was a good job I'd had the foresight to pop a tissue in my pocket! LOL Thankfully I collected myself fairly quickly once it had ended.

After this the Scottish lady proceeded to choose a flower at a time and give a reading on what she could pick up about the person who had brought it in. In one way this was disappointing: the regulars had known what was happening so had come prepared but newbies like ourselves were, effectively, left out....... but I had never seen this done before and it was really fascinating to see.

Basically she chose a flower and proceeded to study it for a while, gently stroking the petals and leaves and then giving a reading from what she picked up from it, saying a little about what she thought it represented, the kind of personality she thought the person had and any problems she felt the person had gone through etc etc.

Now she hadn't been present in the room when the people gave the flowers to the other lady and the other lady hadn't gone into the other room where she was waiting - all the flowers were laid in a box and there was nothing to identify them with the person who had brought them in. It was all done anonymously and it was only after she had done a reading that she asked who's flower it was and asked if they could own what she said. It seemed to be extremely accurate from what the people were saying. Who would have thought that a flower that was picked just before they set off for the church could reveal so much about the person who had chosen it?

When all the flowers had been chosen and a reading given the collection plate was offered round and money duly given (note to self: I must refrain from referring to this as: The Whip Round LOL) and we then went on to sing the final hymn, which was Amazing Grace (still a firm favourite with me). All the hymns were sung without musical accompaniment which we found a little odd but, thankfully, there were several people there who knew how to carry a tune and the hymns were well known to us (apart from the Spiritualist one), so it helped keep things sounding reasonable. :0)

The organiser lady then read out some notices: the Open Circle, for Development, is on Wednesday nights at 7.30pm; Thursday nights was something else (can't remember, unfortunately); who the reader would be for the following week and, the bit that really made an impact....... Ian Lawman would be the guest at their church on the 22nd October. The last time we saw Ian was at one of the Pink Pig evening events and he gave us messages from our Dad - that was just a short time after he'd crossed over. Now Dad wasn't overly keen on some of the TV psychics but he was impressed with Ian (David Wells was another) so it was doubly pleasing that we had messages. Another case of synchronicity: I made a note in my diary for that date. :0) A closing prayer was then said and then everyone thanked the two ladies and made their way out.

What I really liked about the service (?) were the little bits of humour that cropped up throughout which kept both the mood and feeling light and interesting - by far a much more relaxed way than many a church I've been in in my time. It was also nice, as a Pagan in a Christian church, not to feel outright discomfort at being there and I would go again and probably would be OK about going there on my own too....... though I wouldn't be quite so happy about having to walk back up the High Street on my own on a Saturday night. Things were definitely a tad lively down there!

1 comment:

Julie said...

Woohoooo .... you finally got there to the church. Yes Karan it is called a service LOL

I'm so glad you felt relaxed and had a good evening there, how did DH like it??

Will you go again??

Hope you are having a good night at the development circle tonight.