Of Course, I Could be Wrong

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MadPriest’s Mad March Angelic Sponsorship Drive

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Lois, Alice, Greg, Virginia, Kevin, Abigail, Patricia, Dora, Alison, Christopher, Shelley, Norris, Sally, Loretta, Roberta, Ellie, Andrew, Melissa, Charles, Renee, Michael, Jay, Wade, John, Eileen, Dale, Susan, Kevin, Nancy, Mary, Joan, Nick, Nola, Gethin, Joan, Anna, Sam, Ian, Jendi, Karin, Andrew, Kenneth, Susan, Paul, Kathryn, Bruce, Justin, Margaret, John and Margaret.

QUESTION: What do these fifty fine human beings have in common?

ANSWER: They are the Saint Laika Angels who, by generously making the commitment to donate a fixed amount of money to my ministry and the work of the Saint Laika website and Facebook page each month, keep my head above water and my priestly vocation ongoing.

Saint Laika's does not, and will never, charge people to listen to or download the services posted on its website. Unfortunately, it does cost money to keep Saint Laika's open to the public. The website host, the company that hosts the audio and video files and the software providers who provide all the add-ons that keep the whole experience running seamlessly, they all need paying every month. The music has to be paid for as must the royalties on the music. Then, on top of all this, the administrator of this site, Father Jonathan Hagger, who cobbles together the vast majority of the posts at Saint Laika's, receives no salary from any church or any other employer. In fact, his ministry consists entirely of his work on the Internet, a vocation that he has been pioneering for the passed nine years. As he refuses to charge people to access the website Jonathan relies entirely on the friends of Saint Laika's who regularly donate some of their hard earned money to keep his ministry going.

At this moment in time I receive £546 (before deductions) each month from my friends, the Saint Laika Angels. This is, to put it bluntly (in the original English), "bloody fantastic!" However, it really isn't enough to live on let alone run a creative website full of good stuff designed to refresh the disciples of Christ and encourage others to follow him too. Therefore, from now until Easter, I will be running a campaign to increase the number of Saint Laika Angels and get my monthly stipend up to a more comfortable figure.

£1000 is my target and I have the "sure and certain hope" that this is an achievable amount.

If you are not already a regular giver to the Saint Laika project but would like to be you can join our angelic host of supporters by setting up a regular, monthly subscription through the PayPal widget at the bottom of this post. You do not need a PayPal account of your own to do so, just click on the up and down arrows, decide on how much you would like to donate each month, and then click on "Subscribe." You will then be taken through to the PayPal website where you can simply and quickly (fingers crossed) complete the transaction. Each month you will receive a special thank you from me that will never be worth anything but might just give you a chuckle (and heck, we could all do with more chuckles in our lives).

Email me at revjph@saintlaika.com if you need more information or help setting up your subscription.


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Diocesan Blues

I originally applied for permission to officiate in my diocese at the beginning of December last year. It took the bishop's office nearly two months to acknowledge my request and that was only after I had repeatedly harangued the bishop like the widow in the parable did the lazy arse judge. Before the bishop will even begin to consider giving me permission to officiate I have to be checked out with the Criminal Record Bureau to make sure I don't have a history of abusing children or vulnerable adults. This is standard procedure nowadays, thank God. So towards the end of January I drove to the diocesan office and filled in the necessary form, as they have to witness its completion and then send it to the relevant government agency. The report is then sent back to the person getting checked up on rather than to the prospective employer etc. It normally takes a couple of weeks as they are aware that jobs depend on the result of the enquiries. After, over a month I was beginning to get worried about the fact that I had heard nothing from the Criminal Records Bureau (I've been checked many times in the past and they have never taken this long). But before I rang the CRB office to complain about their  tardiness I thought it best to check with my diocesan office to find out when they sent the form in.

I was told that the form had been sent to the CRB on 23rd. February, only a week ago. They had sat on the form for nearly four weeks before getting round to posting it.

So far, my dealings with the staff at the diocesan office have shown them up to be a bunch of lazy incompetents completely unconcerned about the people they are supposed to be working for. My desire to get back to being a priest appears to mean nothing to them although it is the most important thing in my life at this moment in time.

I think I am going to write to David Cameron and suggest that the government privatises the Church of England because, in its present, nationalised, unaccountable state, it has become a living reality of the "not being able to organise a piss up in a brewery" saying.

Free Stuff

Three song sampler from I AM SNOW ANGEL's full length album CROCODILE.
Sophisticated, enchanting alt-pop.

*****

An excellent sampler from top Americana label which includes a Steve Earle track.

*****

Diamond Rugs is a indie rock supergroup made up of members of Deer Tick, Los Lobos, Dead Confederate, Six Finger Satellite and formerly The Black Lips. Their second album, Cosmetics, is available everywhere 2/24. Enjoy a sampler with music from Diamond Rugs and their members, Deer Tick and T. Hardy Morris.

*****

Hurray for the Riff Raff is headed out on a national headline tour and put together a special compilation entitled The Body Electric EP. It features two tracks from the album Small Town Heroes as well as a Billie Holiday cover and "Everybody Knows (For Trayvon Martin).”

*****

Avid Dancer is the nom de musique of Los Angeles' Jacob Dillan Summers. An Introduction is exactly that: a collection of songs from Summers' forthcoming LP, 1st Bath, due April 14th via Grand Jury, coupled with a pair of covers -- the bouncy "San Diego Zoo" by the incomparable Magnetic Fields and a re-envisioned "Mad World" by 80s synth pop mainstays Tears For Fears.

*****

Recorded over the course of the band's first two years together, this debut album represents some of the Orchardist's most formative moments. Through rich characters, immersive story-telling, and insightful musing, these songs combine to explore the good and the bad of having "Dirt on Your Hands."

*****

These 3 songs are featured from the new record "Season of Violence or Mourning, Protest, & The Birth of Bishop Killborne", which was released Tuesday, February 24, 2015.

*****

An Indie Dance Pop explosion to shake your hips and warm your heart.

*****

Download the new single from Nicholas Altobelli's new album exclusively on NoiseTrade! The download also includes an acoustic demo, a duet with Caitlin Cary (Whiskeytown), and the lead single from Altobelli's 2013 acclaimed album, Without a Home. Sarah was produced by Salim Nourallah and features John Dufilho (Deathray Davies, Apples in Stereo), Joe Reyes (Grammy winner), Rahim Quazi and Kim Nall. The new album, Searching Through That Minor Key, will be out later this year.

Holy Communion For The Second Sunday In Lent

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Jesus Christ is not ashamed of us so we should never be ashamed to be his disciples for by joining in his sacrificial mission to save humankind we are saved for all eternity. When we eat the bread and drink the wine of the Eucharist we remember that we are one with Christ and with each other, united in the communion of the human and the divine that confers eternal salvation.

At Saint Laika’s everyone is invited to receive communion and be in communion. There are no exceptions. If you have been pushed out of a church in the past or if you do not feel part of the institutional churches, for whatever reason, you are especially welcome here, and you will be among people who know exactly how you feel.

If you want to physically partake of communion you will require a small piece of bread and a small amount of drink (preferably made from grapes and containing alcohol). How you view the nature of this part of the service is completely up to you.

Click on the arrow on the far lefthand side of the sound bar to listen to the service now or CLICK HERE to download the podcast so that you can listen to it later at your own convenience.

Alternatively CLICK HERE to access the podcast via iTunes.

Join in with us as we worship God by CLICKING HERE for the order of service, credits and details of the music featured. The words in bold type are the ones we say together.

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I’m Back! (And Hopefully I’m Here To Stay This Time)

Two weeks and about five hours of unproductive conversation with poorly paid Indians with a less impressive grasp of the English language than someone from Essex, I said, "It will be the router."

Now, I'm no tech head. In fact, I do not have the foggiest idea how all this broadband stuff works, but I am logical in my thinking and the presenting faults pointed to it being a problem with the hardware in my house. Unfortunately (for my sanity of late) these call centre workers are not allowed to think, they are only permitted to ask questions in a strict, predetermined sequence and run tests on the line in the same, robotic way. The real pain in the arse is that they insist on asking exactly the same questions and running exactly the same tests every time you ring about the same problem and steadfastly refuse to read the notes on previous phone calls - hence the astronomical number of minutes I have clocked up on the phone to India over the last two weeks.

Yesterday, when the same fault happened yet again, and on being told that they had to start all over again because the file on the problem had been closed and they weren't allowed to open it again, I hit the roof and was, at last, referred to someone at the call centre who was allowed to make small decisions if absolutely forced to. After another long conversation she finally gave up and agreed to send out an engineer albeit subject to a whole load dire warnings about how much we would be charged for this if it turned out to be down to something we had inadvertently done.

He arrived this afternoon, spent two minutes checking the line and announced, "You need a new router."

He fitted one and once again I am back in cyberspace. Hopefully, this will remain the case for a long time to come.

These call centre workers in India, even the senior ones, must be paid an incredibly small wage if talking on the phone for five hours costs less than a five minute home call by a local engineer.

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