Oops, damn spellcheck!, meant to write “God”. Ok, so I do believe in God, of course, and naturally, I go to church. Ah, but which church? For a Realtor, one of the big “name-brand” churches in town would make good business sense. Attend the service, then head over to “coffee hour” and work the room for listings!
Unfortunately, I can’t do that. I’m way too fussy about how my (Episcopal) service should be run. I don’t happen to like the new hymns used in the modern service and I’m disgusted that they chucked out some of the great old hymns like “Onward Christian Soldiers” (music by Arthur Sullivan, for gosh sakes).
The new, “improved” service performed at most Episcopal churches is also unacceptable. There was something comforting and familiar about the ol’ 1928 Book of Common Prayer, so why change it?
And the worst thing about the new service (which I must endure when I attend church in Maine in the summer)? They have this awful business called “Saying the peace”. Right smack-dab in the middle of the service, everything stops, and you’re supposed to turn to those around you, look ’em in the eye, shake their hand, and brightly say “Peace”. Yuck.
Part of the church experience, as my brother Anthony likes to say, is “Private prayer in public”. Going up to people and saying “Peace” violates that privacy. You wanna make friends? Then attend coffee hour, that’s what it’s for!
Nope, for me, the only choice was the Anglican Church of Greenwich, which meets at 9:00 AM Sundays at 606 Riversville Road (corner of Riversville and John Street). You get the 1928 Prayer Book, short sermon by Father Robert Bader, the old hymns, and an excellent coffee hour. Whole thing takes around 45 minutes.
(The church rents space from the North Greenwich Congregational Church, which has their service at 10:30.)
So…you want the comforting and familiar, this is the church for you. Justice, but no “peace”!