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‘Dear God, please bless my BlackBerry (and my iPhone and my Nokia …)

IT’S 2010 – yet there’s still place for primitive mumbo-jumbo in the financial heart of the capital.

Parishioners holding their cellphones aloft in the hope of a blessing from God

In London’s 17th-century St. Lawrence Jewry Church yesterday, parishioners took out the tools of their trade – mobile phones and laptop computers – to have them blessed by The Rev Canon David Parrott.

A “symbolic” pile of the things, according to this report, was laid on the altar where they were blessed.

It was an effort, said Rev Parrott:

To remind the capital’s busy office workers that God’s grace can reach them in many ways.

The good reverend added:

It’s the technology that is our daily working tool, and it’s a technology we should bless.

The short blessing capped Monday’s services at the Christopher Wren-designed building – the official church of the Corporation of the City of London, which runs the capital’s financial district.

A few of the faithful held their phones up in the air as he ran through the prayer.

He said the blessing ceremony was an update of a traditional back-to-work ceremony called “Plow Monday,” in which villagers gathered to bless a symbolic farming implement dragged to the church’s door. Parrott said that ceremony no longer had much relevance for his church, which was “nowhere near a field in the middle of London.”

Rev Parrott took up his post at St. Lawrence Jewry about seven months ago and said the updated ceremony was “a fresh idea for a fresh post”.

He said he hoped the ceremony had made worship:

Lively and relevant to the people who work nearby, in the financial district.

And, may we add, utterly ridiculous!

Hat tip: PaulEd

25 responses to “‘Dear God, please bless my BlackBerry (and my iPhone and my Nokia …)”

  1. Alec s thompson says:

    So does the blessing prevent said items from being nicked lol 😀

  2. That’s one of the silliest photos I’ve ever seen.

  3. Har Davids says:

    The iPhone has an App for that at only Euro 0,79, so you don’t need to go and have it blessed. It even blesses me and people I aim the phone at.

  4. Barry Duke says:

    Let’s face it, Ophelia, when we Brits do silly, we don’t do it in half measure!

  5. barriejohn says:

    Sounds like The Dud Parrott sketch.

    Come to think of it, I do sometimes exclaim: “It’s the blessed phone again!”

  6. George Stevenson says:

    Cellphones? CELLPHONES!?

    Deary me…

  7. Matt Wardman says:

    I think the good Reverend made the wrong call here … lots of useful things for him to do about new technology to help them reflect; this is not one of them.

  8. Well, what else do you expect from these nincompoops after the manner in which they gambled away other people’s money on mortgage and oil backed securities?

  9. valdemar says:

    Why stop with small electronic devices? Perhaps the Admiralty could get God to bless our Trident submarines – which have so far proved far less destructive than the gadgets of those dear bankers.

  10. OurSally says:

    This lunacy is not confined to the Brits. Here in catholic South Germany they have special Weihbischöfe – bless-bishops – who travel round blessing anything that doesn’t move. Correction, I have seen them bless farm animals and fire engines too. They blessed the brass band’s new uniforms.

    This is actually quite fun, as they splash magic water and wave funny smoke at things, and there is always food and drink and a fest.

  11. barriejohn says:

    Can you send one of them over here to bless my underpants then, OurSally, because I’m sure they emanate from the very pit of Hell!

  12. barriejohn says:

    I know that electronic devices, like pieces of machinery and electrical apparatus, do seem to have a mind of their own, but what on earth is the point of “blessing” them? Does it mean that they are going to perform more efficiently in future, or, like that boat in The Ship That Died Of Shame (my Dad took me to see it in the Fifties, and even then I thought it was the daftest story I’d ever come across!), will they only operate in a moral manner henceforth? Matt Wardman is right: there might be something to be said for encouraging the congregation to reflect upon the way that they actually USE these items, but to “bless” the objects themselves is pure superstitious nonsense!!

  13. LD says:

    Office workers will soon have little tapestry signs on their walls: “Bless this Mouse”.

  14. Chris says:

    At least God has finally brought himself up to date with modern mobile technology. The burning bush thing was starting to get on my nerves.

  15. tony e says:

    During WWII the Nazi Abbott Albanus Schachleiter used to regularly bless men and tanks of the nazi’s.

    Good to see how effective that was.

  16. andrea says:

    you can’t text very well with a burning bush. Perhaps the blessing will improve their signal? I reckon waving it in the air during the blessing might prove to increase signal strength in a true believer’s phone

  17. Neuseline says:

    I want my pots and pans, oven, grill, toaster, washing-machine, vacuum cleaner etc. blessed. Need I go on?

  18. Angela_K says:

    Wasn’t the ship Titanic blessed when launched – look what happened to that.

  19. Stonyground says:

    Did not one of these people have a sudden epiphany and declare “I am surrounded by idiots” and race out having seen the light?

  20. barriejohn says:

    @tony e: The obvious retort to your comment is “But look how much worse they would have fared if they had NOT been blessed!”, so I’m afraid it’s back to the drawing board for you!!

  21. Andrew King says:

    Brazen idolatory IMHO. Burn the heretic!

  22. tony e says:

    @barriejohn: I’ve given myself 100 lines.

  23. […] of City of London toffs having their mobile phones blessed by a vicar, more than 300 Islamic scholars and imams from across Gambia gathered at the headquarters of Qcell […]

  24. Paul King says:

    Will the flying spaghetti monster bless my phone with his noodly appendage if I ask nicely?

  25. Just when you think the silliness and stupidity of religion has peaked out, something like this shows you that you’re wrong. “Oh no, we can be far more silly and stupid than imagined.”