scheduled for October????
What date I wonder? 29th? 30th? Hmmmm......
The Diocese of Shrewsbury is risking soured milk and sickly cattle after deciding a coven of witches could not hold its annual shindig on Catholic premises. The Crystal Cauldron, led by High Priestess Sandra Davis, booked the Our Lady's Social Club in Shaw Heath, Stockport for the Witches' Ball, scheduled for October. …
If the witch lady knew her stuff, she could always point out to the Rev how much the Catholic church had taken from older religions that they would regard as pagan.
Hijacking the mid-winter Saturnalia festival, for example, and using that for Christmas.
Taking spring fertility celebrations and using that for Easter (they didn't even bother to invent a new name for that one - look up the derivation of the word Easter if you don't know it.)
Building their churches on sites that were sacred in the older religions.
Even adopting the cross as their principal symbol.
OTOH, I do think she had a bit of a cheek trying to get a church hall...
Paris because she undoubtedly knows someone who would hire out a room to them.
..at least they haven't been burnt at the stake.
Why would you expect an organisation hardly known for it's abundant inclusivity and liberal thinking, to allow you to use their sacrosanct premises to entertain a polar opposite belief system?
Would a pentangle of Satanists expect to be well recieved?
Aren't the woods the ideal place for witchy gatherings? Or the Crystal Palace/Fortress if you want to be a smart arse.
Aren't witches sexist, or do they allow warlocks?
Where's the IT angle? :P
Aren't we all God's/Gaia's children?
Where's the Love?
All important questions.
I'm not one for litigation, normally, but they should sue on the grounds of religious discrimination. Of course, the Catholics would probably argue that they answer to a higher power. And, as we all know, that higher power decrees love, peace and harmony - unless he doesn't like them, in which case he decrees mass murder\ethnic cleansing\smiting (choose your own preferred term).
Honestly, you summon a few measly spawn of Satan and suddenly the whole word is against you. sheesh
""We thought we were bridging the gap with other religions..."
To be fair, the parish simply told them to go away. Beats getting burned at the stake for your troubles. I'd call that progress.
Flames for the cauldron of course.
This is naught but an vile anachronistic bedevilrie, I prithee! Such individuall as aforespoke hath not one place in this time of heathen rationalry. Mark these words and return their wicked sowells back from whence they hath arrived, to the century of playgue, fylth and Shaykespyr. Or, at the verrie least, By The Lord's Dyvyne Hand, removeth of their besmyrcked fayces their 3G moabyl telyphoans and of their desk the broad-banded inter webbe for of this madjick, they have not an atomme of apprecyation.
Curseth they awl! And a pox on their festivities and diseased halls, both!
...although the church was much more welcome in days past. Just think a couple of hundred years ago and they would've laid on a nice fire with steaks all round, and maybe organised a nice dip in a nearby river.
...I'll get me coat.
On a serious note, I wish them good luck in finding another venue, and that all goes well.
"Parish centres under our auspices let their premises on the understanding users and their organisations are compatible with the ethos and teachings of the Catholic church. In this instance, we aren't satisfied such requirements are met."
So they only let Catholics in. Nobody, not even other Christian doctrines are compatible with the cult of the trinity and their confession-based get out of Hell free card, their bigotry and sex discrimination and their penchant for symbolically drinking the blood of a long-dead Syrian man.
"Witch party refused use of Catholic Hall". Theres a surprise.
I'm still waiting to hear from Greenpeace to see if they'll let Clarkson hold an annual "Top-Gear fanfest" on their premises, or whether Gordon Brown will let out No.10 to the Conservative Party for use in their "Get Gordon Out!" campaign.
They don't believe in the Catholic faith yet they want to pay them to use their premises? So, either they like to support other contradictory belief systems (they may not disprove of Catholicism but it does disprove of them, strongly), in which case they obviously aren't sure about their own, or they believe in both faiths in which case they're hypocrites.
It amazes me that there are people out there who like to pay churches when they don't believe in them. Much like people who buy Windows just to moan about it, I suppose.
Coming from a Catholic background I'm not at all surprised by this. I've always found followers of the faith to be somewhat stuffy and old-fashioned (rightly or wrongly). But, then again, would your local Catholic church give over its building for a meeting of Muslims, Protestants or (Heaven forbid) Evangelists?? Possibly not.
It's a shame for the witches. I hope someone else offers them a venue. If not, maybe they could turn the local Catholic priest into a frog.
I don't know what the laws are like across the pond, but this would be a legal no no in the former colonies. Once you make facilities available to the general public you can't discriminate against who can rent them out.
it baffles me that people still believe in all this superstitious junk in the 21st century. H00mans are so silly.
I see where the problem lays. If witchcraft and paganism was as intolerant and bigoted as the Catholic church appear to be then they would have been allowed in quite happily I guess.
Given the amount of Pagan beliefs that all churches in Britain have co-opted in their crusade to convert people in years gone by I'm suprised they could tell the difference.
Could it be that the choice of a church for their little get-together was not entirely innocent? Possibly, in fact, to get a little media attention when they were turned away?
Perhaps that would explain why the tickets were printed before the venue had been paid for?
No, of course not. That's not the kind of thing anyone would do.
The church should honor its contractual agreement and then start enforcing its new rental policy. They made a mistake by allowing them in and for some reason this group was dumb enough to ask a catholic church to rent its premises.
I completely understand why the catholic church doesn't want them there (and I'm an atheist), but I still find the whole thing of the past rental amusing. Seriously... who approved it?
Applicant: We'd like to rent your hall.
Chuch: What do you plan on doing?
Applicant: Just your normal witchy pagan activities.
Church: As long as it doesn't involve a priest and kid, I think we're good to go!
"Does the Church check everyone's beliefs"
Extraordinarily classic. A group of people that think they're hobbits not only tried to insult their arch nemesis by having a party in their club house, but then had the brilliance to ask the mother of all stupid questions when the attempt fails.
Are you sure this wasn't a coven of retards? Do they need a reminder of what the International Pedophile Club used to do to people they thought where witches over the last couple thousand years?
They ought to know that the only magic tricks allowed are from the babies of virgins that can walk on water, turn wine into beer (or something) and whose blood is a fine claret.
For an encore why not go to church next Sunday and ask for 'kings'* instead of salvation.
*If they're allowed to play at being witches in real life, I'm allowed to pretend the local vicar is a pally who can grant me World of Warcraft magical enhancements.
"they obviously aren't sure about their own, or they believe in both faiths in which case they're hypocrites."
There's no hypocracy involved in believing there's more than one way to recognise divinity, and that no one path is 'the one true way'...
I'm not connected with that coven - or indeed any other - but I'd suggest one reason for the use of a church hall is that in many places there's not much alternative... not every town has a suitable-sized hall for group rituals, that also has sufficient parking, accomodation nearby for people coming from a distance etc, other than the church hall.
Of course, the 'tabloid' image of paganism , as illustrated by whichever numbskull above was talking about 'Wickerman' doesn't help when you're trying to find a venue either...
As for discrimination against pagans in the UK, it's easy to sidestep the law because at the moment there's no officially-accepted definition of 'pagan' that any reasonable percentage of pagans can sign up to - 'pagan' is an umbrella-term that covers a huge variety of belief and practice... you've got more hope of herding cats than pigeon-holing pagans, it's in their nature to be in a constant state of flux because the pagan life-journey is all about 'the quest to learn' rather than claiming to 'already know everything' the way most faiths do.
Blessed Be, Richard
(Paris, because she'd look good skyclad. ;-) )
It is a common misconception that witches were burned. Mostly, witches were hanged, while heretics were burned.
Also, before someone starts down this path ... the "burning times", as commonly conceived, is an urban legend. Most of the people hung as witches in the late middle ages were Christian, and about half were men. Mostly, it was a Protestant, not a Catholic phenomena. There was no "wicca' in Europe at that time; they are a 20th Century movement.
What a load of self-righteous clap trap. Anyone is entitled to make an assessment about whether some else 'fits the bill' when it comes to making resources that we own or have entrusted to our care available to others. Hence: car hire companies make decisions about who can drive their cars; landlords about who they will rent their property to; even a shop keeper is entitled not to sell to someone if they choose not to. What 'the law' has to say about such 'discrimination' is another matter (in fact it varies quite widely), but all of us make such judgements all the time.
To pompously rave on about the evil Catholics merely reveals the level of prejudice some of us carry towards that institution, not to mention the varying levels of ignorance that accompany it.
Ah well, it ever was thus; both tedious and predictable. As for the witches; were they trying to be clever, or did they just not realise who the hall belonged to? I'm sorry for them if that was the case, but otherwise it's like the man who walked into a bar---he should have seen it coming!
Speaking from experience, there are plenty of churches who hire out space to pagans or the like, as long as you're fairly discreet and wash up any dishes and cups afterwards. This woman clearly doesn't understand the implicit understanding about being discreet, that's all. This talk about it being "discriminatory" is ridiculous -- I bet the woman didn't mention they were witches when they booked, and if they had they would have reasonably been turned away immediately, just like the Hell's Angels, etc., but now that she been "offended" she can play the "oppressed minority" card to gain attention. Any sane person would just book another venue; but then anyone else wouldn't be able to get this kind of publicity -- look at the shot in the Telegraph where they've all got dressed up in robes (Is that Sally Griffin in the background? She's looking old these days...) -- and it becomes obvious this has been done more with the intent of promoting paganism than for airing a genuine grievance. Of course the church in question (like any other non-public place) is entitled to refuse anyone they damn well please -- what a pathetic whinge!
In the wider context, pagans have experienced a few problems in the past over employment discrimination and the like, but they're no longer a genuinely oppressed minority. A few of them do, however, still have a lot of access to the media because of the contacts that were made at the time of the Satanic Ritual Abuse scandals. Hence today's entertainment. Ultimately, paganism is a large minority with a lot of media clout, but more importantly it has a lot of young women who like to dance naked, so I've always been a keen supporter and I wouldn't say a word against it. ;-)
Pagans request access to christian premises to conduct their rituals and are refused.
I doubt Muslims would be allowed to worship in synagogues or vice-versa and I don't expect anyone would see anything unusual in that. Why are people whining here?
Oh, I know... because it's easy to Catholic-bash and get away with it.
"Parish centres under our auspices let their premises on the understanding users and their organisations are compatible with the ethos and teachings of the Catholic church"...
So if you don't believe that God's representative on Earth is an aged ex-Nazi with such kind eyes, then you're on the no-no list.
"That's too bad, according to the Diocese of Shrewsbury's Reverend John Joyce, who confirmed: 'Parish centres under our auspices let their premises on the understanding users and their organisations are compatible with the ethos and teachings of the Catholic church. In this instance, we aren't satisfied such requirements are met.'"
Most Catholics I know are NOT compatible with the ethos and teachings of the Catholic church. Then again, even the Catholic church itself isn't. One of their most sacred rules is "Thou shalt not kill", but look at what they do to family planning clinics and abortion doctors. Let's not forget the Crusades. Then, of course, there's "Thou shalt not commit adultery", etc. There's the idea (belief?) put forth that god forgives, yet the second commandment clearly states "for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me" (punishing the children for the sins of their fathers). That doesn't sound like forgiveness (or love) to me.
There are far too many inconsistencies and contradictions within the Catholic religion (and Christianity in general) to put any faith in it. Having said that, all Witches should know that Christianity, especially Catholicism, will never accept them. Never. To think that you can bridge the gap and even be tolerated, let alone accepted, is nothing but hopeless insanity.
As for discrimination, in the US, Christians are pretty much allowed to do whatever the hell they want. After all, they make the laws. Case in point: Christian pharmacists who refuse to give the morning after pill to women who are concerned they may be pregnant. The law says that that's OK, that it's acceptable for them to refuse to give women the morning after pill if it conflicts with their religious beliefs. These Christian nutcases have even refused to give the pill to women who were raped. They say that the woman must bear her rapist's child. The "sanctity of life" is apparently more important than the physical and emotional pain, and miserable life, for both the woman and the bastard child. And we thought Nightmare on Elm Street was fiction.
Before anyone gets all huffy, this is not an indictment of all Christians. I know a lot of Christians, even some Catholics, who are good, decent people. But then, that's only because they live by their own moral code instead of taking everything literally from endlessly-translated 2000-year-old documents. Religion is a very personal thing. You don't need anyone else to tell you how to have faith or how to interpret the various texts. After all, nobody in the Christian world has officially been spoken to by god, therefore their interpretations of the various texts are no more important than yours.
"There's no hypocracy involved in believing there's more than one way to recognise divinity, and that no one path is 'the one true way'..."
Of course there is -- the Catholic faith forbids the worship of any other than their "God". Either you believe that or you don't, but if you're a "Witch" you demonstrably don't.
Believe what you like but please, at least, make sure that you're consistent -- otherwise it's hard to follow the latest incarnation.
You don't need to agree with somebody else's belief to accept 'that way may be right 'for them'... if you started down the road of agreeing with everything you'd probably end up with an homogenous mess of nothing in particular - but that doesn't mean you can't tolerate difference enough that you can co-operate with people. Ever heard of inter-faith work?
In the case of paganism that tolerance of difference is probably just as well, as there are wider chasms in thought between different groupings of pagans than between the various 'desert religions' who all too frequently go to war over their seemingly irreconcilable differences - most of us would rather talk it out over a shared loaf and mead, life's too short to waste in squabbles so we usually agree to differ if we must. 'Bitchcraft' does go on, but thankfully it's rare.
Langalf - you're not going to hear the 'burning times' myth from me... you won't find many pagans that believe it these days, history is a bit better understood now than it once was - modern druidry in particular is taking such scholarship seriously and it's been long overdue.
Neither will you see any catholic-bashing... most of the catholics I know I have quite a lot in common with once you get away from the 'big guy in the sky' bits - they've got their myths, we've got our own, and there's quite a lot of overlap.
I suppose the fundamental difference between us is that 'most' pagans don't claim our myths are anything more than that... they're just stories used as a way to pass down ideas... as such, most paganism isn't really a 'faith' at all, more of an 'unfaith' - and churches/mosques/synagogues in general seem to our attitude of 'everything is open to question' rather challenging as it's a totally alien concept.
"Well, if they're drinking their homebrew before it's finished fermenting, they're asking for trouble."
Indeed. Large quantities of active yeasties & the human GI tract are bad mojo.
"Remember: always rack, filter, and cool with a baboon's blood before bottling."
HERETIC! Filtered beer is an anathema to the brewing art! BURN HIM!!!1one!!eleven1!! Never tried the baboon blood, though ... where can I get it? Sounds interesting.
Side note: Saturday, I bottled about a third of a thirty gallon batch of a cross between Brown Ale & IPA (hopefully a clone of Dogfish's Indian Brown) ... The rest is in 6 x 3 gallon corneys :-)
 Hopefully even the PETAphules in the audience know that's a joke paragraph ...
You lot might have missed that the article said "Catholic social club". If there is a pic bear in mind that I'm visually impaired and thus can't see it, so I could be missing a dirty great pic of a church right there on the page, but from the wording it seems it's a Catholic run social club and not achurch. It could be considered a community resource, and might not have been easily identifiable as Catholic for all I know.
Also they were evidently given a firm booking, surely the time to tell them no would be when they made this? I doubt they would print tickets and so on if they hadn't got a confirmation on the date and time being available. I also doubt they would complain so much if they had been told up front that they couldn't use the venue. Hell some commenters are stupid.
As to ban the catholics, hell yes. The Pope said gays are evil, women should get back to their kitchens, and various other rubbish. I say discriminate unto them as they would unto others.
"Oh, I know... because it's easy to Catholic-bash and get away with it."
Well yeah, of course it is. The catholic faith is based on martyrdom. If everyone was accepting them, there wouldn't be a point to the faith would there? Having gone to catholic school from the age of 5-16 and taught by priests and nuns, we were institutionalised from day 1 to believe how pitiful we all were in the eyes of our lord and saviour, and how wrong everyone else was about their beliefs.
Thank God I'm a rational passion who doesn't believe in ghosts, gods, fairies, and the easter bunny.
At least they don't do things anymore the way they did in the days of Deuteronomy 13:
"6 If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend, which is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers; 7 Namely, of the gods of the people which are round about you, nigh unto thee, or far off from thee, from the one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth; 8 Thou shalt not consent unto him, nor hearken unto him; neither shall thine eye pity him, neither shalt thou spare, neither shalt thou conceal him: 9 But thou shalt surely kill him; thine hand shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people. 10 And thou shalt stone him with stones, that he die; because he hath sought to thrust thee away from the LORD thy God, which brought thee out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage. 11 And all Israel shall hear, and fear, and shall do no more any such wickedness as this is among you."
Not letting them have their heathen singsong in your place of worship, is positively mellow by comparison. I mean, it'd be like having Steve Ballmer explain the evils of the Poisonous Open Source Licenses at the Linuxbierwanderung.
To illustrate a point - does this mean the Catholic church must welcome into its premises atheist groups that hold true to the polar opposite of the ethos and teachings of the Catholic church?
Of course not! This is not a matter of discrimination, legality, or intolerance. It is common sense.
The owner of the premises reserves the right to admission. Just like your local pub...
Whilst the numbers killed by the Inquisition may be limited, the Catholic church and those acting under instructions from the Pope killed very large numbers of people across Europe and the Middle East - usually because they weren't Catholic enough. It was the same thinking as seen with Islamic fundamentalists today. Consider the origins of the drink "Bloody Mary" as one example.
I can't believe the witches really expected to be able to use a church hall though - either they wanted the publicity or they have been smoking something.
Reading about that case, it was clearly a case of wrongful dismissal due to an individual using the "Multicultural room" set aside for all faiths in the company to pray. The users of the room were predominantly Muslim and appeared to object to anyone else using it. The management decided to vilify Holden, rather than say that the prayer room isn't called the Muslim room for a reason.
Compare it with this case, where a Catholic Church (who's main belief is that theirs is the one true faith) refused to allow some Witches (who obviously have different beliefs to Catholics) to have a party there. As others have mentioned, Catholicism is an easy target*. No one would think of hiring part of a Mosque or Synagogue for a pagan event. It's just bad taste.
* Not that they don't deserve criticism for a great deal of what they've done, but in this case it's just plain stupid.
in thunder, lightening or in rain?
When the hurlyburly's done,
when the battle's lost and won,
That will be ere the set of sun.
Where the place?
Upon the heath,
there to meet with MacBeth.
I come Graymalkin
Fair is foul, and foul is fair,
hover through the fog and the filthy air.
Honestly. It's a social club, run by Catholics. The coven booked it, and the booking was accepted. Why? Perhaps it was a suitable building, and when their booking was accepted, they thought "great, maybe we're making some headway here!" or something. Or maybe they *are* just stupid, who knows?
Either way, I don't trust Christians. They worship a carpenter who got himself nailed to a tree - is that any way for a God to behave?
A number of interesting points above, especially Mr Richard North's who mentions about the diversity of pagans, and smudge, who said.
"Hijacking the mid-winter Saturnalia festival, for example, and using that for Christmas."
I thought it was Mithras whose birthday they nicked? Y'know, the Roman God who was born to a virgin on 25th Dec, in a cave, to a virgin...
Flames? Need I explain? All we need to do is see if the High Priestess weighs less than a duck....
The Catholic Church is fundamentally opposed to Witchcraft and, indeed, any other pagan type worship. This is something at the core of the belief and not something that can be debated or changed -- if I could be arsed I'd quote some bible verses.
As an enemy of the church doing business with them and "filling their coffers" is just stupid. I know pagans are generally a tolerant and live and let live lot -- but Catholicism doesn't give a shit about that and it hates your beliefs (but not you). If it were up to the church no other religion would exist -- do you really want to pay to help them spread that message?
..Seems now the witch has much Toil and Trouble to organise the new venue.
(Yeah, the Scottish Play was obvious...)
PS, Hubble telescope recently was a lotta toil and trouble. Wonder if it'll eventually de-orbit on a heath, not the Pacific?
'Amstead 'eef, maybe? Glad I'm in Finland...
I don't remember Jesus telling the deciples "but the Samaritan didn't follow the same religion as our fathers and after he'd saved the guy by the roadside, we thanked him and then told him he couldn't book our meeting hall"
Come to think of it, I don't think the followers of Jesus DID follow the religion of their fathers which means that under old testament law, they should have been stoned to death. Any children of theirs should also have been stoned to death. Likewise, anyone who converted to Christianity should have been stoned to death (by the laws in the old testament). So why ARE there any Christians?
The Catholic church held a meeting (I think it was in 428 AD) and decided which books of the bible they wanted to include and which ones they wanted to scrap. It seems like the one that had the passage about compassion, tolerance, forgiveness and leading others by example was cut. Oh, wait...
<<The owner of the premises reserves the right to admission. Just like your local pub...>>
Try and visit your local mosque, if you aren't a Mohammedan (I love that word). But, I prefer the pub. At least, you get to keep your shoes on. Until one gets legless, 'natch.
(Got me coat, Imam spotted the hip flask*...)
*"Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snake bite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake." W.C.Fields (Peace be unto him)
Wow, given all the vitriol here, you'd think Catholics were busy banning almost everyone from everything, everywhere at all times!
Let's get a grip, I'm not R.C, but Ive been to a Celidth at the place in question a few years ago. It's not an amazing venue, but it is in STOCKPORT - an almost-city with it's own postcode region, not a village parish.
And in this case, it really does look like a bit of engineered Catholic bashing, open-season for every gripe about organised religion going.... oh, not quite, I note the FSM and IPC haven't made an appearance yet ;-)
-cheers from Julz @P
BTW: "I don't think the followers of Jesus DID follow the religion of their fathers which means that under old testament law, they should have been stoned to death" I understand, by and large, Christianity was considered a Jewish sect for several decades; so with few exceptions (e.g. Stephen), stoning wasn't on the agenda.
You can compile old Tux and he he won't give a 'f**,
Since he split up with Torvalds he's down on his luck.
He loves a roll in the snow and he will take it all
but the hedgehog can never be compiled at all.
(I couldn't bring myself to type the 'b-word'. I'm such a wimp)