Letter: Deterrents to worship in church

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The Independent Online
Sir: With reference to the recent correspondence about Anglican cathedrals, and particularly the letter from the Rev Kenneth Leech (18 August), I have had doubts for some time as to whether an Anglican cathedral is regarded as a place of worship at all. Services seem designed to make the congregation feel excluded and superfluous.

A few years ago, in Exeter Cathedral, I was praying in a side chapel when I was asked to leave as a service was about to begin. Admittedly, I was offered the option of another side chapel nearer the door; but the attitude of the authorities did not strike me as Christ-like. On the other hand, in the Catholic cathedral in Barcelona recently, I admired the architecture, lit a candle and prayed, and stopped to hear part of a Mass being held in a chapel at the time, and no attempt was made to eject or move me.

I have been a member of the Church of England all my life and have no intention of leaving, but I sometimes find it hard to defend.

Yours faithfully,




18 August