Thwarted Manchestertum markets in everything

by on April 6, 2017 at 12:22 am in Current Affairs, History, Religion | Permalink

A fundraising plan to hold a mock crucifixion of members of the public in Manchester city centre has been cancelled after Church of England clergy raised concerns it was blasphemous and unsafe.

Organisers of the Manchester Passion Play, which will tell the story of Christ’s crucifixion in the city’s Cathedral Gardens on Saturday, offered “the full crucifixion experience” for £750.

The offer, posted on the Manchester Passion 2017 Crowdfunder site, was removed after members of the play’s organising committee, which includes C of E clergy, expressed concerns it was potentially dangerous and blasphemous.

Reverend Falak Sher, a canon at Manchester Cathedral and chairman of the organising committee, said he vetoed the idea when it came to light.

He said: “When I saw it I did not like it, I thought it was disgraceful. The whole message of the cross is hope and love. When I saw this I was not very happy and asked the committee to take this one down.

“We didn’t like promoting the event in this way for £750. I thought it was not a very positive message when dealing with a message of love and hope.”

And yet the article gets better, and indeed draws upon economic analysis:

Stewart-Clark, who runs a business importing timber, said that the event had grown since it was first conceived to include a cast of 120, and 80 stewards. “The whole thing just got bigger and bigger and, of course, with that comes the infrastructure cost,” he said.

“Instead of being a £20,000 play it became a £55,000 play and the burden on raising money then falls on us. We were trying to think up some ideas, just bouncing around what would be good, and someone came up with the idea of letting people be crucified for £750.”

Stewart-Clark said that he did not think the idea was blasphemous, but that it was on “the grey line” and tasteless. “You have clergy wanting to play it safe and businessmen like me trying to raise the funding,” said Stewart-Clark. “There was a difference of opinion and what was a small disagreement has got out of all proportion.”

I enjoyed this sentence:

He said that he had never known anyone to fall off such a cross.

And this one:

Stewart-Clark said there were plenty of other bad fundraising ideas that were scrapped, including charging people a fee to sit next to the bishop to watch the play.

Here is the full article, interesting throughout, and with a photo of the initial fundraising ad.  For the pointer I thank John B.

1 msgkings April 6, 2017 at 1:14 am
2 Ray Lopez April 6, 2017 at 2:43 am

What is this? Clickbait? Why don’t you tell us what the video is, or do you want people to click on it? re t a d

Without clicking on it (and I don’t intend to), I’ll point out that in Mexico during Easter it’s common to have mock crucifixions, where real nails are hammered through hands. Hope they get tetanus shots.

3 msgkings April 6, 2017 at 3:59 am

Your loss, genius.

4 Steven Sailer April 6, 2017 at 4:16 am

I thought that was your Philippines that nails people to crosses, Ray.

5 Ted Craig April 6, 2017 at 8:16 am
6 prior_test2 April 6, 2017 at 2:11 am

‘“the full crucifixion experience”’

Well, maybe the nailing part ( http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2126024/Christians-NAILED-crosses-gruesome-Good-Friday-enactment-Jesuss-death-Philippines.html ) but it is reasonable to assume the spearing part will not be included for the low, low cost of 750 pounds.

‘The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the sabbath day, (for that sabbath day was an high day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away.

Then came the soldiers, and brake the legs of the first, and of the other which was crucified with him.

But when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was dead already, they brake not his legs:

But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.’ Church of England approved translation, https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+19%3A31-34&version=KJV

7 prior_test2 April 6, 2017 at 2:54 am

And to separate the holy from the profane, it is surprising that a keen eye such as Prof. Cowen’s did not pick up on the public choice economics aspect involved, namely ‘Stewart-Clark, who runs a business importing timber.’ Crucifixes don’t come cheap, after all, particularly when a businessman is ‘a managing trustee of the Passion Trust, which helps groups organise passion plays,’ is seemingly in charge of fundraising.

Clearly, religious faith is just another ploy of disguising self-interest behind a veil of higher purpose, though I do not seem to recall the GMU econ dept. putting any research emphasis on that aspect of political economics.

8 Apso April 6, 2017 at 2:59 pm

In fairness, we could probably do mass crucifixions much cheaper today with galvanized metal posts an smaller, dimensional lumber. That’s just materials, don’t get me started on nail guns.

9 UncleMartyPants April 6, 2017 at 4:15 am
10 So Much For Subtlety April 6, 2017 at 5:20 am

He said that he had never known anyone to fall off such a cross.

Don’t tell me – he is working from a sample size of one?

11 Rich Berger April 6, 2017 at 7:11 am

Just change the location to the Caliphate, 2016 A.D., and everything’s smooth.

12 rayward April 6, 2017 at 7:15 am

I’m with Cowen on this one: I’d rather pay a few hundred dollars to sit beside the bishop than thousands, or hundreds of thousands, to sit beside the president. While the president has friends in high places, the bishop has a friend in a much higher place.

Of course, there’s a common motif between Christianity and Austrian economics, namely suffering.

13 Bill April 6, 2017 at 7:43 am

If they are looking for an event which would attract crowds and be in keeping with an English historical tradition, Druid sex orgies would be more popular.

14 dearieme April 6, 2017 at 10:13 am

Which of the four gospels says that Jesus was nailed to the cross? Answer: none of them.

What did the eye-witnesses say? No eye-witness account was recorded.

15 prior_test2 April 6, 2017 at 10:35 am

As long as we ignore the Gospel according to John, that is – ‘Now Thomas (also known as Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.

A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”

Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”

Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+20:24-29

Believe whatever you wish of the story, but the text in that Gospel is extremely plain. Assuming, of course, there is not a lost passage where someone put nails through his hands at some other time than the crucifixion.

16 dearieme April 6, 2017 at 11:14 am

You’re right, I should have said “three synoptic gospels”.

My point about the eye-witnesses stands.

17 rayward April 6, 2017 at 11:23 am

Of course, crucifixion was the Roman’s method of capital punishment (stoning being the method of execution by the Jews). Jesus was one of many Jews to be crucified by the Romans. Mass crucifixions were used during the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE. The Apostle Peter, the first Pope, was crucified, in Rome, upside down (according to tradition). Paul, however, was executed in the manner reserved for the Roman citizen that he was: he was beheaded. New Testament scholars believe the Gospel of John (the last of the four canonical Gospels) was written between 90 CE and 110 CE, long after the destruction of Jerusalem. The four canonical Gospel contain differences, large and small, the Gospel of John much different from the earlier three (synoptic Gospels). I’ve learned not to get too focused on the historical Jesus, or the historical accuracy of the Gospels: they are theological documents, certainly no less theological than the Gospel of Strauss. [Sorry, I couldn’t resist.]

18 dearieme April 7, 2017 at 11:58 am

“The Apostle Peter, the first Pope, was crucified, in Rome, upside down (according to tradition). ”

It’s pretty unlikely that Peter ever went to Rome; there’s certainly no evidence that he ever did. The story of his crucifixion there can therefore safely be rejected.

Paul went to Rome, all right, but there’s no evidence that he was executed there, and (I understand) some evidence that he wasn’t.

19 Taeyoung April 6, 2017 at 11:55 am

What is “Manchesterum?” Is that a synonym for Mancunian?

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