Wednesday, 22 June 2011

New Blog - Lay Anglicana

As promised, my first featured blog in this new thread which I devote to the promotion of new blogs. 

When I mentioned this last week, I received a very encouraging response and can fill new next month or two. Thank you to those who either approached my directly or who recommended new blogs of note. 

Lots of blogs are written the clerics. I am one of them, so won't judge - but this week's blog is not one such site. It's title gives it away, really. It's author, Laura Sykes is, and I hope that she will forgive me for so saying, of a demographic for whom social media is not perhaps first love or competance. She is a ready and welcome presence in the dialogue of Twitter and Facebook, and I commend her and her blog in those terms. Please give her a read, and maybe even click her 'Follow' button too.

In her own words ...

Laura Sykes served from 2005-2010 as a ‘lay worship leader’, one of about thirty in Andover Deanery (UK) taking services of the word after minimal training (eight evenings in successive weeks). Her experiences led her to start a website on this new species of fauna – ‘lay anglicana’ – where laity and clergy could exchange ideas on the role that the laity might play in the worship life of the church.

 Ideally, there would be a priest in every parish church. However, in the words of Giuseppe di Lampedusa, ‘if you want things to stay the same, everything will have to change’. The Church of England knows this, but is very resistant to change. For every two steps forward, there seems to be one step back. In the absence of any other forum for the laity freely to voice its opinion qua laity (the House of Laity being part of the establishment), Laura is highlighting some of the issues facing the Church, encouraging all that seems good while pointing out that ‘the Emperor has no clothes’ if and when it seems appropriate, eg over current developments in the Anglican Communion. 

Now a pensioner, she is at an advantage in being financially independent. She calculates that, so long as her polemics do not actually land her in the Tower of London, the expression of her trenchant opinions may be a catalyst for constructive change, as well as being a delightful occupation for her old age. The website discussion forum is at   and the blog is at


  1. Thoroughly commend your recommendation. This week's "organists" thread has sparked some interesting discussion and a good response.

  2. David, thank-you for this.

    I am honoured to be your first beneficiary and salute your caring generosity in helping me and other new bloggers onto the first few rungs of the ladder.

    You are quite right about my demographic not being at the forefront of technological change and the use of social media. However, I have had a personal computer since 1987 (before many of you were born), so have relied on 'learning by doing' for many years. 'Dum spiro, spero'.

  3. Good recommend. I have been a fan of Laura's since the outset and she has been gracious enough to allow me to assist with the admin of her facebook page.

    Perhaps, like her, I am also a pensioner and financially stable and have the luxury to devote some time to all of this.

    I sincerely hope that she can make a difference.

  4. Laura is one of those rare laypeople, usually female, who vicars dream of having in their congregation. In return for a bit of respect you get a friend for life and, most important, someone to hide behind when the shit hits the fan. I thoroughly commend her blog to the entire known universe.



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