Church leaders in the Diocese of Rochester have called for the...
Bishop gives sermon from helter skelter
The Bishop of Lynn, the Rt Revd Jonathan Meyrick, has delivered a sermon from a helter skelter in Norwich Cathedral.
The fairground attraction was part of the Cathedral's Seeing It Differently project, aiming to let visitors see the stained glass windows depicting Bible stories nearer the roof and to look around the rest of the building
Bishop Jonathan said: "God wants to be attractive to us... for us to enjoy ourselves, each other and the world around us and this glorious helter-skelter is about just that.
"Enjoying ourselves is a good thing to do and God will be revelling in it with us and all those people who have found fun and joy and laughter here," he said.
The 55ft slide opened on Thursday 8th August and ended on Sunday, where the bishop gave his talk from the top and then slid down.
The diocese expect 10,000 people went down the slide and that 20,000 people visited the building.
Revd Canon Andy Bryant, who came up with the idea, said: "Many will want to focus on the sheer numbers we have been able to welcome into the Cathedral and the relaxed happy and joyous atmosphere in the Cathedral. However, the things I will most carry away from this time are the individual conversations, people sharing stories of connecting with the Cathedral, enjoying seeing the building from a new perspective, finding a welcome distraction at a difficult time in their lives, asking questions about faith and gaining new encouragement in their relationship with God. This is what this event has always been about; providing time and space for both human and God encounters.
"As the lights on the helter-skelter are turned off for the final time, it truly does feel like together we have learnt to see things differently and that the real adventure is just beginning."
The Dean of Norwich, the Very Revd Jane Hedges, said: "Clergy and volunteers on duty throughout these 11 days have heard so many moving stories from people who've never been in a Cathedral before and also from people who have just faced a tragedy or from those living with serious illness.
"Inevitably there have been people who have complained about having a helter skelter in a sacred place but the overwhelming response has been incredibly positive.
It faced criticism from some, with one former chaplain to the queen suggesting it made a mockery of God.
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