Co-creating rites of passage

I love it when worlds collide and so often something amazing happens. Core to a good experience is that both worlds enter into the conversation and work out the way forward together. Grayson Perry has done this brilliantly with the first of his rites of passage pieces on Channel Four. The way he curates the living wake is simply beautiful, for the individual involved and the community around him, it is the best example of co-creating space I have seen in a long time.

As I reflected on the programme it made me reflect on how of all the major rites, perhaps, death is the one where the church is at its best. The process of developing the funeral service is co-created between the ministers and the family, its personal, its poignant because the space is co-created, it doesn’t matter where on the faith journey the participants are, their opinions and ideas are valued and included where possible. Perhaps something similar happens at weddings.

This co-creation of space is at the heart of the emerging church for me. It is what helps it move from a position of power to service, from orthodoxy to grounded orthopraxis, and make real connections that help us all discover the g-d we don’t yet know.

1 thought on “Co-creating rites of passage

  1. If the minister allows it, this is what happens with all the occasional offices. There is a reasonable amount of scope for it in baptisms, weddings and funerals. However one of the overhangs of establishment and patriarchy is that some ministers in the CofE still don’t allow for many choices, tell the family which scripture reading they will have, will deliver a standard sermon on that scripture that they deliver on every occasion, won’t let family give a eulogy etc. So many missed opportunities.

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