I’m taking a break from this blog now until the New Year. I’ve posted just about every day this year except August and a few days in October when the site broke, so I have a few days of holiday to use up.
Welcome to everyone who has discovered this site for the first time, perhaps because someone has given you a copy of the book for Christmas. I hope you enjoy looking around. Please do tune in again in January when daily posting will restart.
Comments are on over the Chrismas break, but many may be moderated. The site uses a secret algorithm to decide which comments to allow and I for one have not a clue how it makes its decisions.
An advance apology: It is looking quite likely that the site will go down for a few days at the end of December. This month has been the busiest ever and once again I am going to exceed my bandwidth limits even though the webhosting company keep upping it and upping it. I tried to contact someone from the technical department on Friday for a reuppance of my limits, but I think I must have missed them before they left for their Christmas break. I’m hoping someone will be able to flick a switch to prevent this happening between Christmas and New Year, but we’ll have to wait and see. I’m aware that this is not a very satisfactory state of affairs and plan to do something about it in the new year if I can find someone with technical competence to help me. In the meantime if any subscribers require a cartoon during the last week of December I’d advise downloading it sooner rather than later. This does not affect We Blog Cartoons and The Wibsite.
2007 Cartoon calendars: don’t forget you can download them here – they are entirely free. If this site goes down I have added the download links to We Blog Cartoons.
A Happy Christmas and New Year to everyone reading – hope you have an enjoyable break at some point – see you in January.
Posted by Dave at 4:56 pm on December 24, 2006 and filed under CartoonChurch progress.
These were the 10 most popular entries on the Cartoon Blog during 2006 as voted for by you, the readers and commenters. You unwittingly voted by making comments – so the more comments that were made the higher up in this chart the post ranks. I realise that this is a fundamentally flawed system as a comment saying “Booo! What a load of rubbish!” counts as a vote when the author would surely not have intended it to.
Disclaimer: There may be mistakes.
Here are the top 10 posts in order of reversing merit:
November 22: Religious discrimination (28 comments)
This was to do with the woman and her cross and her being cross at British Airways. The post has a cartoon followed by a small amount of not particularly in-depth commentary on a religious issue. A lot of the posts just outside the top 10 seem to follow this format, so I will try to do more such posts in 2007.
November 23: Christian Unions (28 comments)
Sharing the number 10 spot is this cartoon from the following day all about the Christian Unions.
June 17: The vicar’s study (30 comments)
Approximately 30 clergy came forward on this occasion with descriptions of their study to help me do a cartoon. The result is in the book, page 70. Thank you!
April 11: Small competition (30 comments)
A little competition toook place in which I asked participants to suggest a context for my ‘that is so unbiblical’ cartoon.
July 17: Bloodless, insipid and dessicated cartooning (33 comments)
Someone on another website was a bit mean about my drawings and the community rallied together and said nice things. Aren’t you lovely.
November 13: I could do with your help (34 comments)
This was when I got into a bit of a state in November because I ran out of cartoon ideas and you came to my help.
December 11: Cartooning by committee (35 comments)
This was when I got into a bit of a state in December because I ran out of cartoon ideas and you came to my help.
September 8: Evangelistic frisbee competition (35 comments)
A competition was held to give away a frisbee with an uplifting message.
May 03: Save the SPCK! (38 comments)
This was one of a number of campaigns that happened on this blog during the year. Lots of other bloggers posted an image on their blogs and it was an encouragement to some SPCK employees if nothing else. You can see all my SPCK-related posts here.
April 11: Hell, etc (44 comments)
The most in-depth theological discussion we had on the Cartoon Blog during the year. In fact it might have been the only theological discussion we had during the year.
February 21: Announcement sort of thing (56 comments)
Well, who would have thought it. The most comments were on this post announcing that my wife and I were engaged (She was not my wife at the time obviously). We were married in the summer. It is fitting that this should be the number one post from the year really… so… thank you!
You can see the whole of the year’s posts and in fact all of the posts ever on this page. It is OK, you do not need to have read everything in order to participate on this blog during 2007.
Thanks to everyone who has posted in the comments with their contributions during 2006. They are appreciated even though sometimes I don’t reply or comment on your blogs.
I will be posting tomorrow but then am taking a break for the rest of the year in order to recharge myself. A Happy Christmas to everyone who is logging off for the Christmas Holidays. If you are still reading the internet tomorrow I will say Happy Christmas to you then, so ignore this greeting unless you do not mind it being repeated. I know, it is all terribly confusing.
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Posted by Dave at 8:22 pm on December 23, 2006 and filed under CartoonChurch progress.
These are the results of the Christmas Tree poll that I did on December 13th.
19% of you will be putting up your Christmas tree tomorrow, so I hope that goes well for you. Dave Killingback admitted to being the first of the ‘at some other time’ voters. There are two other people who put their trees up in June or somesuch time. They are out there… somewhere.
Posted by Dave at 11:15 am on December 23, 2006 and filed under Mundane.
According to Inspire magazine St Stephen Walbrook is to become London’s ‘Internet Church’.
The Venerable Peter Delaney, Archdeacon of London commented: “Our vision is to create a truly virtual church that can be accessed through the internet, 24 hours a day, and will be able to offer sermons, services, prayer and Christian community to all visitors.”
The brainchild of Rev Dr Peter Elvy, St Stephen Walbrook will be officially launching the Internet Church this Christmas. “London’s Internet Church is believed to be the first of its kind in the capital. With support from both the Bishop of London and the Archdeacon of London, and a partnership with Christian media specialists, Premier.tv, we hope St Stephen Walbrook will flourish as London’s Internet Church.”
It doesn’t really specify what form this internet church will take beyond a series of programmes to be broadcast on Premier TV, the Christian radio television website. Neither the St Stephen Walbrook site not the Diocese of London site have any information at the time of writing as far as I can see.
Other internet church projects include the Oxford Diocese i-church and the Church of Fools / St Pixels from Ship of Fools. I’m not sure what happens at the i-church one as it seems to mainly happen in a ‘members area’. The Church of Fools went down the ‘simulated church’ route, whereas St Pixels has gone for worship in a chatroom-type ‘cafe’ along with bulletin boards. It remains to seen whether this latest project will be similar to these or go down a different route.
As an unrelated aside Inspire magazine will be giving away 10 of my books in the new year. Inspire is a free monthly magazine for churches or can be sent to individuals for a donation. It has a circulation of 65,000 and an estimated readership of 200,000 plus. CPO produce it in partnership with Church Army, Tearfund, CMS and Nationwide Christian Trust.
Posted by Dave at 3:44 pm on December 22, 2006 and filed under Church, Religion.
So says David (Wannabepriest) to John Coles of New Wine. David is a member of the New Wine ordinands network. This is to do with the conservative evangelical ‘covenant’ story.
In other ‘Anglican goings-on’ news Stephen Bates makes his predictions for 2007.
In ‘not really related but then again perhaps it is’ news, Moby’s Christmas message:
i think it’s odd/funny when people come to moby.com or myspace to tell me about christianity | moby.com (via Bigbulkyanglican)
Posted by Dave at 7:45 pm on December 21, 2006 and filed under Anglican goings-on, Religion.
For those who find the motorway network a bit confusing this motorway map should simplify things. Then there is Chris’s British Road Directory, which Farli has reminded me about.
Make wrapping paper using Flickr images. Fun, but I don’t think my printer ink will stretch that far. Found via Russell Davies.
If you have a full house at Christmas and need to entertain everyone Tesco have some games you can play. If those are a bit conventional you could try these victorian parlour games.
Christmas Day service
The Christmas Day service on BBC one comes from St Mary’s church Ealing, home of the creative folks who go by the name of ‘Grace’. Jenny Baker will be preaching. [Update: Just to make it clear (as Jenny has mentioned in the comments) that this will be a traditional service rather than a creative Grace-type one.]
Christmas internet searches
Christmas trees are the most popular searched-for Christmas thing, according to this site. The next are ‘free’, ‘cards’ and ‘songs’. One can only assume that what people are really looking for are ‘Free songs about Christmas Cards and Trees’.
ChristmasCarolMusic.org – thanks to Rebranded and Rhys. “It has sheet music, lyrics, midi things, 4 part sheet music even, sheet music for instruments that do things in funny keys – everything. And it’s all free. How cool.”
Posted by Dave at 12:27 pm on December 21, 2006 and filed under Sundry posts.
Churches are making efforts to provide services for those for whom Christmas is a difficult time, says this Guardian report. What a good idea. I have seen other churches with ‘longest night’ services to mark the longest night (and therefore shortest day?) of the year, but mostly in the USA I think.
Actually I am not sure whether today is the shortest day of the year or not. I heard on the radio that it is, but the internet is divided on the matter. The winter solstice is tomorrow, the 22nd. Perhaps someone can explain.
Whatever, I have heard that now is a good time to see the International Space Station zooming across the sky if you are in the UK. Try typing your location into this page and see what happens. Note: You will not be able to see it if it is foggy.
Posted by Dave at 11:41 am on December 21, 2006 and filed under Church, Religion.
You are welcome to use this image on your blog with a link back here. You can save it on your own webspace or just copy and paste the code below. Easy as cake.
<img src="http://www.weblogcartoons.com/cb/schism.gif" alt="cartoon from www.weblogcartoons.com" />
<p>Cartoon by <a href="http://www.cartoonchurch.com/blog/">Dave Walker</a>. Find more cartoons you can freely re-use on your blog at <a href="http://www.weblogcartoons.com/">We Blog Cartoons</a>.</p>
Subliminal advertisement: If you liked this one there is a book and everything
Posted by Dave at 12:34 pm on December 20, 2006 and filed under Anglican goings-on, Cartoons, Religion.
This week’s other Anglican story has been the decision of two churches in Virginia to leave the Episcopal church and become part of the church in Nigeria. It is all a bit complicated, but here are some links to explain it: Ekklesia / Ruth / Simon (Note the first name terms there).
I have some things to say about this. First of all, I am dubious about the idea of letting the congregations vote to decide upon things. Imagine where this would lead if taken to its furthest conclusion. Sermons would be one of the first things to go, followed by the liturgy and most of the songs. No, this is not the way we do within the Anglican church. The Anglican way is to elect a PCC and have them make the decisions under the watchful eye of the Vicar. Until someone is committed enough to the life of the church that they are willing to sit through a lot of extensive and boring Tuesday evening meetings thay should not be allowed to make any decisions.
The other question which comes to mind is what will happen to the church property. The two congregations of the Truro church and the Falls church have voted to ‘take their property with them’, but I imagine the Diocese will not allow this. The prospect of a lengthy legal battle is not that appealing, so my proposal is that neither side has the church buildings but that instead each is turned into a carpet shop.
I can see many readers frowning and reaching for their ‘unsubscribe’ buttons, so I will elaborate on my proposals. They could be evangelistic carpet shops if you like. It would be be best if they had a coffee area at the side. People of all theological persuasions (and none) would be able to meet together and have a chat in the coffee area. This might help them to get to know each other and then they would recognise that they are all human beings just trying to do the right thing and that there is room for them all within the church.
There would be no pressure to buy a carpet.
Subscribe to this idea and in fact to this blog in general | What a load of utter nonsense
Updates to other Anglican stories:
- Anglican Mainstream have issued a response to the critics of the ‘covenant’ document. It now turns out that 31 people are supporting the covenant, rather than 9 as previously thought.
- The Bishop of Southwark has responded to the drunkenness allegations on thought for the day. You can listen here. Personally I believe him. I’ve been disappointed by the gleeful response of some Christians given the obviously dubious nature of some of the newspaper reports.
- Fulcrum, (the society for sensible evangelical Anglicans) are aiming to gather responses from extraterrestial beings – see this page and scroll down to the ‘validation’ section.
Posted by Dave at 12:13 pm on December 19, 2006 and filed under Anglican goings-on, Cartoons, Religion.
I was initially quite concerned when I heard about the so called ‘covenant’ delivered to Archbishop Rowan by a group of conservative evangelical Anglicans last week. (I use the word ‘covenant’ in inverted commas as a covenant is an agreement betwen two people, which this is not.) The ‘covenant’ basically says that they are going to bypass Bishops they don’t like, withold their contributions to diocesan funds if they feel like it and ordain whoever they want to. You can read it here should you want to.
I was alarmed to see that it came from groups including the Church of England Evangelical Council (CEEC), a group representing a range of evangelicals within the C of E.
But all is well – and in this case I’m glad I was very slow in saying anything about this story. It turns out that the covenant does not even have the support of the council members of the CEEC, let alone any of the member organisations or ordinary members. Bishop Pete of Willesden and the Ship of Fools (and a member of the council) is publicly distancing himself from it and I very much doubt that most members of institutions such as the Evangelical Alliance, Scripture Union, New Wine, the evangelical theological colleges (Ridley Hall Cambridge, Wycliffe Hall Oxford, Cranmer Hall, Durham, Oak Hill College London, Trinity College Bristol, St. John’s College, Nottingham) all of whom are represented on the council were even consulted let alone support the ‘covenant’. The “CEEC President and Chairman sign new Covenant on behalf of CEEC” headline really is rather made up.
The final nail in its coffin was this response by the Bishop of Durham, Tom Wright. If you only read one link on this story this is probably your one.
If I were a member of any of the organisations listed above I’d be asking my CEEC representative (or college principal) a difficult question or two. As Tom Wright said: “It looks as though the authors are hoping that the members of their organizations will not dare to challenge them, though when we work through the document we find plenty of reasons why they should.”
Update: A great post by Paul Roberts – A lament for Evangelicalism
Remember how you were once concerned above all other things with bringing the Good News to people who didn’t know who Jesus was and what he has done. Now all you seem interested in is sex and church politics, as if without the Church getting straightened (sic) out on this issue, the gospel somehow is powerless. Do you still believe in the gospel? Or are you so concerned about the purity of the Church that you’ve made the gospel a function of ethics or ecclesiology. From where I sit, you seem to have lost your first love, your first passion, your driving force. At the turn of the 21st century, you could have lead, harmoniously, the whole of the Church of England, into an era of unrivaled creative passion for evangelism. Instead, you ran into a churchy ghetto, became sex-obsessed, and started talking only to yourself.
Advertisement: Download a free 2007 calendar containing a selection of my church-related cartoons from 2006
Posted by Dave at 10:06 am on December 18, 2006 and filed under Anglican goings-on, Religion.
I noticed this challenge on the blog of Peter Ould:
Three quick questions Susan:
i) Is Jesus 100% divine and 100% human, now and for all eternity unchanged in that hypostatic union, in a way that no other human being could ever ever be?
ii) Is Jesus the only way to the Father, in that it is necessary to have personal faith in HIS saving power in order to dwell with the Father in eternity?
iii) Was Jesus’ defeat of sin and sin’s power demonstrated by an unequivocal physical resurrection from the grave of the exact same body that was crucified days earlier?
If you can’t answer “yes” to those three questions then you demonstrate why schism will happen. I challenge you to permit this comment onto your blog and then to answer all three questions.
[Look at Peter's post for the full context]
Leaving aside the fact that I dislike it a bit when people put pressure on other people to sign something or take some kind of a test to prove whether they are a proper question, I thought I’d take Peter’s ‘orthodoxy’ test to find out whether I am a heretic or not.
Is Jesus 100% divine and 100% human, now and for all eternity unchanged in that hypostatic union, in a way that no other human being could ever ever be?
Yes. I agree. Though I had to look up ‘hypostatic union’ as it is a few years since I underwent theological whathaveyous.
Is Jesus the only way to the Father, in that it is necessary to have personal faith in HIS saving power in order to dwell with the Father in eternity?
Is Jesus the only way to the Father? Yes. How does this work. I do not know. The ‘necessary to have personal faith in HIS (Jesus’) saving power’ bit I struggle with. What of those people who die before they are old enough to understand anything about ‘having personal faith’? What about those who can’t understand anything about ‘having personal faith’ because they have a learning difficulty? What of those God fearing people who never in their lifetimes meet a Christian or hear anything of Christianity? I could think of many more examples. The truth is that if I am to be honest I have no final answer as to how God will decide who will ‘dwell with the Father in eternity’. See also the former discussion ‘hell etc‘.
Was Jesus’ defeat of sin and sin’s power demonstrated by an unequivocal physical resurrection from the grave of the exact same body that was crucified days earlier?
I believe that Jesus was physically resurrected. As to the nature of his body after he was resurrected – I don’t know. It seems to me that he was in some way different – the way he ‘disappeared from their sight’ (Luke 24 verse 31) and seemed to be able to walk through locked doors (John 20 verse 19). But then again perhaps he could do those things before his death and resurrection. It is evident from the Bible accounts that he was not just a ghost (Luke 24 v 39) , but I don’t know whether his body took exactly the same form. I don’t think I can be certain.
So Peter, heretic or not?
Posted by Dave at 5:50 pm on December 17, 2006 and filed under Religion, Spirituality.
The Church Times ran this advert yesterday from the Bishop of Barking announcing that he will soon be placing a job advert:
Job Title: Bishops’ Olympic Executive Co-ordinator
Job description: We give notice of a forthcoming senior strategic appointment to co-ordinate the Church of England’s response to the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games across London. This appointment is a joint initiative of the Dioceses of London and Chelmsford. Advertisement will be made in January.
Expressions of interest may be submitted to: The Bishop of Barking
020 8509 7377
Bishop’s Offfice, Verulam Avenue Walthamstow, London E17 8ES
bishopdavid at chelmsford.anglican.org
I have started to put some ideas together for the churches response to the Olympics whcih should help the good Bishop:
I am aware that I have pictured pole vaulting, not the high jump. It made the joke work better.
I did think briefly of applying, but that would mean that the Church of England response to the Olympics would be mainly centred around blogging and drawing little pictures.
Instead I think our response should be a bit more wide ranging. I think for instance that if we asked around the local parishes it might be possible to get a team together to do all of the catering.
Also there should be special races for bishops, clergy and laity.
Anyway, if you have any ideas for the Church of England’s response to the Olympics which would help things along post them here or you could if you wanted send them directly to the Bishop of Barking.
Posted by Dave at 11:45 am on December 16, 2006 and filed under Anglican goings-on, Church, Religion.