God Collar

So what have I been reading on my Kindle lately, I hear you cry. Well, thank you for asking, but this week I spent a few hours in various waiting rooms for which the Kindle was surely made. In and out, clothes off and on, and each time I just chucked the Kindle in my bag and there it was at the exact same page when I came back to it.

The book that I finally finished was one which I’ve been reading off and on for a wee while. It was God Collar by Marcus Brigstocke, based on his Edinburgh Festival and West End show of the same name. The premise of the book is that Marcus’ best friend died a few years ago and left a ‘God-shaped hole’ which he tries to explore. The book explores various faiths and pokes holes in them. However he isn’t always kind to the atheists and agnostics either. Yes, the book is funny as you’d expect from a comedian. But it is also a bit rambling in bits too. And I’m guessing that if you’re an atheist you’d enjoy it more than I did. I did enjoy some of it and some of the comments were scathing but true. But Brigstocke falls into the same trap that most atheists do in telling us he can’t believe in God because of x and y. And of course, if he actually listened to most Christians today he’d find that they don’t believe in x and y either.

Not sure if I’d recommend it. I suppose if you are interested in what keeps many people from church, then this will explain much. And it is funny in bits. But somehow I came away feeling just a little bit disappointed that he hadn’t met some of my friends.

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8 thoughts on “God Collar

  1. Your friends are not heard. What people outside of the Church hear are the strident, aggressive voices of those who insist that Christianity is about an unquestioning faith in a set of God-ordained dogmas and adherence to a set of God-ordained laws. So, of course, people like Marcus are led to believe that is what Christianity is all about. And we (me and you and our friends) only have ourselves to blame. We are so damn nice and apologetic all the while, so equivocal, and so afraid of upsetting anybody, that we are completely unsexy as far as the media is concerned, which means we are unheard. People looking for something to fill their God-shaped hole will never get to listen to your friends unless your friends get over their Englishness (yes, I do mean Englishness) and start shouting loud enough to be heard over the clamour of the scribes and pharisees.

  2. A certain Provost has, I think, made a dent in it all up here – he is what the media want – assured, fluent, urbane, sometimes twinkling (that is of course when he is very cross inside, but it looks good on TV) and suitably available. We could use dozens of him all over the place – charming unafraid gay clergy with a positive message.

    While we wait – we all do what we can.

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