Monday, 29 November 2010



The enthronement of the new Archbishop of Canterbury took place on the 17th October and,  in a break with tradition, took place at the Wembley Arena which as most readers will be aware is usually used for football matches particularly the FA Cup. The day started badly. Due to various incidents on the 10 lane M25, when the gates opened at 10.00 a.m. at the Wembley Stadium for the enthronement of Archbishop Rowena, instead of the expected flood of eager participants there was a mere trickle. It is reported that last night Ticket Master confirmed that total sales for the ceremony only amounted to 2,000 of the number available of some 99,000. Speculation is that there are three reasons for the low sales and poor attendance:-
1.      Total lack of interest with the Church of
England being little more than a sect

2.      The high cost of the tickets and transport

3.    With 3d television in every house many preferred
to stay at home and watch it rather than travel long distances.

The promised football match had already been cancelled as the platform for the throne which stood 15 feet high could not easily be moved on to the football pitch so be left in situ. Around 11.30 a.m. people did start to arrive and the groups began to play in turn whilst some dancers from the Gay
Lesbian Transvestite and Transgender Liturgical Dance Ensemble together with the Liturgical Flag Waving Group filled the ground. The souvenir stalls were laden with mugs, scarves, postcards, archbishop teddy-bears and other dolls dressed in ecclesiastical garb etc., although they didn’t seem to be selling very much. A visitor claimed the prices were very high and people just wouldn’t pay them.
At 1.45 p.m. the King and the Royal Family and their entourage arrived, greeted at the entrance by the Archbishop of Canterbury. The National Anthem was played by one of the groups very badly and your reporter wondered why it hadn’t been possible to arrange for a proper band to play this or, at
the very least, to have used a record. The King drove round the ground to the specially constructed Royal Box facing the Enthronement Platform. Shortly afterwards the colourful procession of clergy entered the ground. Many had specially commissioned robes made for the occasion and they ranged from Copes to the new all-in-one clergy choir dress of slip-on alb/hood/scarf and tippet. It was noticeable that there were less than 10 male members of the clergy in the procession. At the stroke of 2.00 p.m. there was a fanfare from members of the Royal Horse Guards and Archbishop Rowena entered the ground accompanied by leaders of Christian and other Faiths, four thurifers with billowing scented smoke, with her four chaplains, twenty servers and the Dean of Canterbury Worship Centre (previously known as the Cathedral).
The Archbishop looked stunning in her designer-made emerald and ruby encrusted Gold Cope and her diamond encrusted Gold Mitre. She carried her shimmering Episcopal Staff with its shining gold and silver shaft and Gold Cross as the crook.  As there was, of course, no door for her to knock in the customary manner an altar boy presented her with a large piece of wood which we understand had been carved out of the door of the Canterbury Worship Centre and which had been replaced with a glass panel so that those outside could see into the nave at all times. She knocked three times and walked on a little.
The Dean of the Cathedral then greeted her: “Welcome Archbishop, our very own and dear Rowena, on this historic occasion. We have waited many years for a woman to become our Archbishop and now this day is here we rejoice and are glad, to quote the Psalmist, to greet you as the first woman
Archbishop of Canterbury. May your reign as Archbishop be long and happy and may it promote the Church to all our sisters and brothers. We will sing the first of the group of choruses which you will see on the screens in front of you”. After the choruses had come to a conclusion, Rachel Constance the first white witch, leader of the Mother Earth coven and first ordained priest of the Church of England to be both a witch and priest and Vicar of St. Hilda’s, Coventry, led a Mother Earth incantation in front of the platform with around twenty other witches from her coven.
The new Archbishop was led up the steps of the platform to be seated in the ancient throne specially brought from Canterbury for the occasion. Prayers were led by the Grand Mufti, a representative of the Dali Lama who couldn’t be present due to a prior engagement, the Leader of the Pagans of Great Britain, the Druids and the Moderator of the Gay Lesbian Transvestite Transgender London Branch The Very Reverend  M/s Roger Eileen Thomas a pre-op Transgender cleric.
Archbishop Rowena mounted the step to the pulpit and delivered her sermon in which she said: “As the Dean said in her introduction we have waited patiently for a very long time for this day to come, when for the first time a woman becomes the Archbishop. I promise you I will do all I can to
promote the church as inclusive of all sorts and conditions of women and men. Everyone is welcome and I was pleased today to have the leaders of various religious organisations here and participating. We all worship the same Mother Father God even though we might express that worship differently. We are an inclusive church, a church for all the people. In fact we are one big happy family rejoicing in both our similarities and our differences and appreciating many different styles of worship that our allied friends have introduced. In a moment we will be taking a collection which will help to defray some of the expenses of this wonderful day.  Over the next few months I will be visiting our churches around the world starting inAmerica where I will be going next week.” You can read the full sermon on the Archbishops Blog.
After the ceremony was complete there was a barbecue followed by a twenty minute firework display. The Royal Family left immediately after the enthronement.
The expense of hiring Wembley, the cost of Archbishop Rowena’s vestments, the Firework Display and the barbecue has been estimated at a cost of around £15.45 million pounds. We understand that part of the cost will be recovered by selling several church properties and other assets and it is rumoured Lambeth Palace, Church House and Southwark Worship Centre (Cathedral) are two of the possibilities and that the Ordinariate might be interested in acquiring Church House and Southwark Cathedral and that a hotel and casino chain are interested in Lambeth Palace for a new Five Star luxury Hotel and Casino.

1 comment:

  1. Very interesting.

    If and when the Church if England comes to such a pass, we know where the Catholics will have gone to. Where do you see the Evangelicals being?