Tag Archives: Cartoon Church

The Dave Walker Files

Things have progressed a little with the Dave Walker/SPCK story overnight with the publication of a great document by Matt Wardman. The document brings together copies of the original seventy-five posts from CartoonChurch, along with subsequent relevant posts and comment from other blogs, such that the document runs to a pretty epic 130 pages. However as an overview of the whole story it is invaluable. The document is downloadable from The Wardman Wire, and as it covers the same material as I have had published on my Evernote account, I’ll be removing those in favour of Matt’s document.

Over the past few days I’ve tweaked the settings on the Dave Walker/SPCK Friend Feed room, such that it is now running with eleven feeds from various search terms that are pretty consistently picking up all relevant posts within a short time of them appearing online (the last time I manually added anything was Wednesday). In theory it should be de-duping between the feeds (although there have been a couple of hiccups) so it should be a fairly good way of keeping track. You can also hook up to a feed from the room which gives you a good way to have an overview of what everybody is saying.

Outside of that there are a few interesting posts that have appeared. Firstly some of the others who were on the receiving end of cease and desist’s have broken cover, have a read of this post from Unicorn Tree Books and this one from the SPCK/SSG blog. There is also this one from SPCKWatch challenging Brewer to send a cease and desist to him, and including a couple of points from Brewers page that don’t appear to be exactly gospel truth.

Certainly what happens next is going to be interesting. SPCKWatch quoted an e-mail from a staff member saying:

Why why why is this not being took on by the media more!!

Sadly widespread media coverage has been sadly lacking up to now, and certainly over the past couple of weeks the media has been far more interested in a game of spot the schism… Fingers crossed that this will change now – certainly there are a couple of well known names who have either signed up to the Facebook group, or blogged in support of Dave. Whilst the removal of the posts was the catalyst, the more one digs into the story the more interesting it becomes, especially when you consider that some of our church buildings are ending up in the hands of these guys along with the SPCK shops.


I’m sure Mark Brewer thought it was a good idea, threaten a little cartoonists blog to get some troublesome posts removed… However, I really don’t think he considered the reaction, as nobody likes a bully, especially not when they are bullying a genuinely nice bloke like Dave Walker. Thanks to the wonders of the Google cache, numerous blogs have now copied and pasted the offending material all across the net, and there is a burgeoning Facebook group in support of Dave. Certainly the effect of their actions has been a massive backfire, raising the profile of the story rather than diminishing it.

Having a Laugh with Comic Relief

Yesterday, this years Comic Relief appeal reached it’s climax with eight hours of TV on BBC1 and BBC2. Yet again it pulled in the donations at a fantastic rate, reaching the fantastic total of £40,236,142 by the end of the night (as a comparison, the BBC’s own Children in Need managed £18,300,392 last year).

The show included the conclusion of The Apprentice Does Comic Relief, that I wrote about yesterday. It finished up with Sugar choosing between Campbell and Morgan for the nominal firing – he went for Morgan in the end, which had been hinted at from the start in that in his start of show interview he was the only one seen commenting that he didn’t want to get fired! To be honest the best moments of that can be found in the first part of the show on Thursday – Campbell and Morgan trying to get the other one fired was amusing, but really a postscript to the main programme.

As usual, the show included a mix of hard hitting documentary sequences showing some of the areas the appeal aims to help in both the UK and Africa, and special comedy sketches. The comedy sketches were a bit hit or miss, with the Vicar of Dibley special, whilst having some funny moments, not being the best, and a live Mitchell and Webb sketch that was greeted with pretty well total silence by the live audience. However, Harry Hill provided what was pretty well a TV Burp Greatest Hits, and there were some star studded sequences from the special Little Britain Live. Peter Kay produced a memorable musical number to follow up Amarillo from last time. This time it was the old Proclaimers number, “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)â€? along with Matt Lucas. The video includes an unbelievable range of celebrities, including Lord Lucan and Shergar according to the credits. The video and song are available from iTunes and is going for a record in terms of being the fastest selling online song – we’ve been star spotting in the video, and about the only non-dead celeb who is credited that we can’t spot so far is David Beckham.

The sketches that we laughed at most though, were two of the Catherine Tate ones with a variety of famous people. The first includes David Tennant as a new English teacher, which if you watch, you’ll realise quite why Beth likes it…

The second was just amazing, as it includes Tony Blair, who actually gets a number of the funny lines…

All of the Catherine Tate sketches from the night, together with some bonus material will be available on DVD on April 9th, and is available from Amazon amongst others.

Whilst on the subject of fund-raising goodies, check out Shaggy Blog Stories, a book of one hundred funny blog postings pulled together by Mike Atkinson, and including contributions from a real mix of famous and not so famous UK bloggers, including Dave Walker from Cartoon Church.


Blogging Cartoonist Meets Blogging Priest

So today a blogging Christian cartoonist met a blogging Priest, as a result of Dave’s appearance at All Saints in Wokingham – and there is even photographic evidence in David Hodgsons Flickr stream

With hindsight heading off to All Saints might have been a better option than St James this morning as there were significantly more laughs… We had the latest round of the ‘Organ is too loud’ argument. This time the choir couldn’t hear the now quieter organ and went flat twice, and out of time too, resulting in our organist being so annoyed that he apparently went on strike by the end and we all processed out in silence! I’m sure it will all get sorted out and this is just the normal teething troubles, but it is a real pain for most of us who are stuck in the middle of the arguments…

Church Politics – Don’t You Just Love It…

Reading through Cartoon Church today, I came across this cartoon produced in response to the news that Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury has been blocked from speaking in Bangor Cathedral by the Dean. Officially the reason given is that the Dean believes that Carey is being disloyal to Rowan Williams the current Archbishop, although much discussion has focused in on his beliefs. Not surprisingly it is being seen as being another liberal/conservative spat, expanded further by Ruth Gledhill in her post on the subject.

It’s also not the first time somebody prominent has been banned, in practice via the official methods of resolutions A, B and C churches can effectively ban a significant proportion of the clergy in the Church of England from their services, however this will be seen as a much more significant and public move.

It’s also not as if the disloyalty is anything new, it is well known that Carey is not keen on Williams, indeed as mentioned in this Observer article from 2002, Carey actually blocked Williams as a candidate for Bishop of Southwark when he was Archbishop. The prominence of Andrew Carey doesn’t help matters either, as quite often the former Archbishop doesn’t have to say anything at all, comments from Andrew are associated back purely because they are father and son.

In reality I see the whole move as generally pointless. It’s not going to stop Carey speaking his mind, nor making his speech. If anything it will make people more likely to listen to him when he goes to Bangor. All it has done is generated a load of poor publicity and given some more material for the factional arguments. Really the Dean would have done a lot better to have politely welcomed Carey and been done with it.

Having said that it has given an opportunity for Dave to produce a topical cartoon, which even Ruth Gledhill has picked up… Can’t be all bad then… 🙂

Do Geeks Get Irony?

cartoon from www.weblogcartoons.com

Dave Walker published this cartoon over on the Cartoon Church site yesterday, highlighting all the flaws and downsides we fail to notice in our ideal gadgets.

What is most amusing though is that the cartoon was picked up by Gizmodo, a gadget themed blog, and with one exception, all the respondents seemed to totally miss the point and produce what seem like serious feature lists. Indeed one even turns up in the comments for the original post – making the point Dave is trying to make quite brilliantly…

Maybe it’s a geek thing – certainly Beth can probably highlight one or two occasions where she has ended up being a sanity check against my justification for a new gadget purchase!

Find more cartoons you can freely re-use on your blog at We Blog Cartoons.

Don’t You Just Love Christians…


I’ve already posted briefly on the appointment of Katherine Jefferts Schori as primate of the US Episcopal Church, however, Dave Walker’s cartoon in response to a quite stunning post from Andrew Carey, son of the former Archbishop George Carey, has prompted me to post again. Most of Andrew Carey’s post actually reads as quite positive, certainly he doesn’t seem to think that her sex is much of a problem, and that her desire to be a reconciler may well be a breath of fresh air for the Episcopal Church. However the real jaw dropping point that inspired Dave is saved for number 4, and is as Dave says, at least honest…

We found out in the Church of England that when some evangelicals attacked the appointment of Dr Rowan Williams because of previously held views that this backfired spectacularly on them. The first response of network and AAC leaders, in my view, should be that of welcome, prayer and a desire to meet with her. The rough stuff can come later.

The BBC has opened a comment page for responses to the election, which is largely predictable, and is following the same pattern as almost every other discussion relating to Anglicanism recently, although the low-light of the discussion has to be the comment from someone who said that after having elected a gay, and now a woman, they’d probably appoint a child molester next. Don’t you just love Christians…

Robert Pigott, the BBC religious affairs correspondent writes about the now inevitable split, highlighting how at this conference the two groups wouldn’t even share the same service – something highlighted by Father Jake on Saturday.

In terms of official reaction, Rowan Williams has issued a pretty positive statement. On the other side the Bishop of Pittsburgh has issued a statement, and the Bishop of Fort Worth is asking for alternative oversight for those dioceses like Fort Worth that do not ordain women.

In amongst all of the drama from across the pond, you might have missed that over the weekend, Ekklesia issued a discussion paper on marriage proposing that the Church wedding, and legal marriage should be split from the religious commitment, effectively having marriage being a commitment in Church, and then a legal civil partnership. The idea behind the paper is that this then focuses a Church wedding as a purely religious statement, and doesn’t force a Christian idea of marriage onto a secular public, who are wanting equivalent legal rights for cohabiting couples and same sex couples. You can read the full paper on the Ekklesia site. The other important point they make is that the separation would remove the state influencing the religious definition of a marriage, and equally the Church influencing the state definition:

The church cannot expect to define what marriage is for everyone (believer or not). Nor should the state or the government get to determine the religious meanings and impact of marriage and commitment within faith communities. It works both ways.

The article certainly makes some interesting points, and although I can’t help but think that to some extent the article is largely playing with words, It is essentially highlighting that civil marriage and a Church marriage, though whilst they share the same legal basis, are not the same thing. As a number of clergy have pointed out in Church weddings I have attended, in a Church wedding you are making a positive commitment to include God in the relationship. So in effect the paper it is proposing to change the name of the civil version to something else. However, as the frequency with which civil partnerships are called marriages, despite them legally not being so, I doubt changing the name of the legal arrangement would make much of a difference anyway!