'Easter is a time for staying in bed, eating chocolate and having sex'

First published in News by

Easter Sunday is a time for staying in bed, eating chocolate and having sex.

But that’s not our opinion. It’s not even the view of the Brighton and Hove Humanist Society.

That’s the opinion of Father Phil Ritchie from All Saints Church in Hove.

He added: “The problem with the church is that we stay inside our building and occasionally come out and say ‘Why don’t you come to our church, it’s cool and funky’.

“To be honest, it’s not.

“I would love more people to come at 10am on Sunday and I would welcome them to All Saints.

“For Christians this is the most important day of the year. All life and all hope flows from it.

“But there are plenty of ways to celebrate without coming to a draughty Victorian building. So why not stay at home, have a lie in, have sex and eat some chocolate.”

Father Phil’s fresh take on the religion’s holiest day comes as congregations continue to fall across the area.

Annual figures for Sunday worship in the county show a steady decline of about two per cent.

For the Church of England’s Diocese of Chichester, which includes Brighton and Hove, Worthing, Arundel, Bognor and Chichester, an average of 39,100 attended each Sunday in 2008.

In 2009 that went down to 38,100 before falling again to 37,300 in 2010.

Comments (26)

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2:33pm Fri 6 Apr 12

championshipgull says...

Well that’s more than we get at football and that’s not counting the new evangelical churches, I hear they are packed with thousands every week and growing.
Well that’s more than we get at football and that’s not counting the new evangelical churches, I hear they are packed with thousands every week and growing. championshipgull
  • Score: 0

3:14pm Fri 6 Apr 12

MuammarQaddafi says...

Easter Sunday is also a day for sitting down and sorting through your increasingly limited options for how to get out for an affordable Bank Holiday weekend and/or summer activity.
Easter Sunday is also a day for sitting down and sorting through your increasingly limited options for how to get out for an affordable Bank Holiday weekend and/or summer activity. MuammarQaddafi
  • Score: 0

3:28pm Fri 6 Apr 12

Maxwell's Ghost says...

I hope this message is for adults. You never know with the church.
I hope this message is for adults. You never know with the church. Maxwell's Ghost
  • Score: 0

9:13pm Fri 6 Apr 12

fedupwithgreens says...

I dont think a story like this is appropriate in a newspaper considering children read this, very tacky story!!! Shame on you perhaps leave what people do in bed on a sunday with chocolate to the bum wiping newspapers of this country, one of which was thankfully shut down!!!
I dont think a story like this is appropriate in a newspaper considering children read this, very tacky story!!! Shame on you perhaps leave what people do in bed on a sunday with chocolate to the bum wiping newspapers of this country, one of which was thankfully shut down!!! fedupwithgreens
  • Score: 0

9:15pm Fri 6 Apr 12

fedupwithgreens says...

MuammarQaddafi wrote:
Easter Sunday is also a day for sitting down and sorting through your increasingly limited options for how to get out for an affordable Bank Holiday weekend and/or summer activity.
Dont need to sit down and do that,iv only got to open my creaky wallet on a daily basis
[quote][p][bold]MuammarQaddafi[/bold] wrote: Easter Sunday is also a day for sitting down and sorting through your increasingly limited options for how to get out for an affordable Bank Holiday weekend and/or summer activity.[/p][/quote]Dont need to sit down and do that,iv only got to open my creaky wallet on a daily basis fedupwithgreens
  • Score: 0

10:36pm Fri 6 Apr 12

thewhitehawker says...

With the creepy dodgy people who work and get supported in churches its not surprising no many people wants to go there .
With the creepy dodgy people who work and get supported in churches its not surprising no many people wants to go there . thewhitehawker
  • Score: 0

11:48pm Fri 6 Apr 12

championshipgull says...

thewhitehawker wrote:
With the creepy dodgy people who work and get supported in churches its not surprising no many people wants to go there .
Just like whitehawk then
[quote][p][bold]thewhitehawker[/bold] wrote: With the creepy dodgy people who work and get supported in churches its not surprising no many people wants to go there .[/p][/quote]Just like whitehawk then championshipgull
  • Score: 0

9:24am Sat 7 Apr 12

Morpheus says...

According to the news this morning Christians are being urged to wear a cross at all times. So if they do this whilst having sex and eating chocolate it should be OK.
According to the news this morning Christians are being urged to wear a cross at all times. So if they do this whilst having sex and eating chocolate it should be OK. Morpheus
  • Score: 0

11:21am Sat 7 Apr 12

Hotbeans says...

championshipgull wrote:
Well that’s more than we get at football and that’s not counting the new evangelical churches, I hear they are packed with thousands every week and growing.
Thousands also leave too, see exchristian.net. Mainly those that realise truth is more important than comfort.
[quote][p][bold]championshipgull[/bold] wrote: Well that’s more than we get at football and that’s not counting the new evangelical churches, I hear they are packed with thousands every week and growing.[/p][/quote]Thousands also leave too, see exchristian.net. Mainly those that realise truth is more important than comfort. Hotbeans
  • Score: 0

12:30pm Sat 7 Apr 12

fedupwithgreens says...

Morpheus wrote:
According to the news this morning Christians are being urged to wear a cross at all times. So if they do this whilst having sex and eating chocolate it should be OK.
Too risky,might fall pregnant. Would rather take contraception as you never know
[quote][p][bold]Morpheus[/bold] wrote: According to the news this morning Christians are being urged to wear a cross at all times. So if they do this whilst having sex and eating chocolate it should be OK.[/p][/quote]Too risky,might fall pregnant. Would rather take contraception as you never know fedupwithgreens
  • Score: 0

12:41pm Sat 7 Apr 12

nicole/bob says...

Two weeks ago, Peter Tatchell, a confirmed atheist, who is reported on the internet as having once said "not all sex involving children is unwanted, abusive or harmful", was a guest speaker at All Saints. As a longstanding member of the congregation, I strongly objected about this forthcoming event, but to no avail, so I decided there and then to leave this Church. I certainly do not regret my decision! Good Friday is a day of reflection on the suffering and sacrificial death of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Not the best time for our Parish Priest to choose to be flippant about the faith... What is happening to the Church of England? I am so sad and upset.
Two weeks ago, Peter Tatchell, a confirmed atheist, who is reported on the internet as having once said "not all sex involving children is unwanted, abusive or harmful", was a guest speaker at All Saints. As a longstanding member of the congregation, I strongly objected about this forthcoming event, but to no avail, so I decided there and then to leave this Church. I certainly do not regret my decision! Good Friday is a day of reflection on the suffering and sacrificial death of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Not the best time for our Parish Priest to choose to be flippant about the faith... What is happening to the Church of England? I am so sad and upset. nicole/bob
  • Score: 0

2:33pm Sat 7 Apr 12

willy harris says...

well done vic,
well done vic, willy harris
  • Score: 0

3:01pm Sat 7 Apr 12

Sussex jim says...

MuammarQaddafi wrote:
Easter Sunday is also a day for sitting down and sorting through your increasingly limited options for how to get out for an affordable Bank Holiday weekend and/or summer activity.
I can't think of a better summer activity than having sex on the lush grass of the south downs or a nice secluded Sussex beach (perhaps while listening to Mungo Jerry or Dawn): but only with your current partner of the opposite gender. Roll on the suitable weather.
[quote][p][bold]MuammarQaddafi[/bold] wrote: Easter Sunday is also a day for sitting down and sorting through your increasingly limited options for how to get out for an affordable Bank Holiday weekend and/or summer activity.[/p][/quote]I can't think of a better summer activity than having sex on the lush grass of the south downs or a nice secluded Sussex beach (perhaps while listening to Mungo Jerry or Dawn): but only with your current partner of the opposite gender. Roll on the suitable weather. Sussex jim
  • Score: 0

3:06pm Sat 7 Apr 12

Sussex jim says...

Morpheus wrote:
According to the news this morning Christians are being urged to wear a cross at all times. So if they do this whilst having sex and eating chocolate it should be OK.
Many Christians wear a cross.
Unfortunately, many others wear a chip on their shoulder.
[quote][p][bold]Morpheus[/bold] wrote: According to the news this morning Christians are being urged to wear a cross at all times. So if they do this whilst having sex and eating chocolate it should be OK.[/p][/quote]Many Christians wear a cross. Unfortunately, many others wear a chip on their shoulder. Sussex jim
  • Score: 0

3:49pm Sat 7 Apr 12

All 9 of me says...

nicole/bob wrote:
Two weeks ago, Peter Tatchell, a confirmed atheist, who is reported on the internet as having once said "not all sex involving children is unwanted, abusive or harmful", was a guest speaker at All Saints. As a longstanding member of the congregation, I strongly objected about this forthcoming event, but to no avail, so I decided there and then to leave this Church. I certainly do not regret my decision! Good Friday is a day of reflection on the suffering and sacrificial death of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Not the best time for our Parish Priest to choose to be flippant about the faith... What is happening to the Church of England? I am so sad and upset.
it's also a day for the atheists to contemplate why you believe in an invisible sky person
[quote][p][bold]nicole/bob[/bold] wrote: Two weeks ago, Peter Tatchell, a confirmed atheist, who is reported on the internet as having once said "not all sex involving children is unwanted, abusive or harmful", was a guest speaker at All Saints. As a longstanding member of the congregation, I strongly objected about this forthcoming event, but to no avail, so I decided there and then to leave this Church. I certainly do not regret my decision! Good Friday is a day of reflection on the suffering and sacrificial death of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Not the best time for our Parish Priest to choose to be flippant about the faith... What is happening to the Church of England? I am so sad and upset.[/p][/quote]it's also a day for the atheists to contemplate why you believe in an invisible sky person All 9 of me
  • Score: 0

3:51pm Sat 7 Apr 12

All 9 of me says...

1 person + imaginary friend

NUTTER.



1,000,000,00 people + imaginary friend


RELIGION.
1 person + imaginary friend NUTTER. 1,000,000,00 people + imaginary friend RELIGION. All 9 of me
  • Score: 0

7:22pm Sat 7 Apr 12

nicole/bob says...

Could Bill Mcllroy, from the Humanist Society, also give us his views on the pornographic display taking place during Gay Pride and the Naked Bike Ride in Brighton & Hove, every summer. Now this is something that children should definitely not be allowed to see.

Also, congratulations to the Rvd Archie Coates, vicar of St. Peter's Church in Brighton, for his lovely and inspiring Easter message in today's Argus. Maybe he could come to the rescue of All Saints in Hove...
Could Bill Mcllroy, from the Humanist Society, also give us his views on the pornographic display taking place during Gay Pride and the Naked Bike Ride in Brighton & Hove, every summer. Now this is something that children should definitely not be allowed to see. Also, congratulations to the Rvd Archie Coates, vicar of St. Peter's Church in Brighton, for his lovely and inspiring Easter message in today's Argus. Maybe he could come to the rescue of All Saints in Hove... nicole/bob
  • Score: 0

9:54am Sun 8 Apr 12

Old Ladys Gin says...

All 9 of me wrote:
1 person + imaginary friend

NUTTER.



1,000,000,00 people + imaginary friend


RELIGION.
Love it!
[quote][p][bold]All 9 of me[/bold] wrote: 1 person + imaginary friend NUTTER. 1,000,000,00 people + imaginary friend RELIGION.[/p][/quote]Love it! Old Ladys Gin
  • Score: 0

12:40pm Sun 8 Apr 12

Cyril Bolleaux says...

Just back from All Saints - as many people attended as I have seen for ages, I would say 300. Lovely service, great vicar. Happy Easter.
Just back from All Saints - as many people attended as I have seen for ages, I would say 300. Lovely service, great vicar. Happy Easter. Cyril Bolleaux
  • Score: 0

2:22pm Sun 8 Apr 12

fedupwithgreens says...

Old Ladys Gin wrote:
All 9 of me wrote:
1 person + imaginary friend

NUTTER.



1,000,000,00 people + imaginary friend


RELIGION.
Love it!
Right on the nose!!!!
[quote][p][bold]Old Ladys Gin[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]All 9 of me[/bold] wrote: 1 person + imaginary friend NUTTER. 1,000,000,00 people + imaginary friend RELIGION.[/p][/quote]Love it![/p][/quote]Right on the nose!!!! fedupwithgreens
  • Score: 0

5:10pm Sun 8 Apr 12

HoveRocksActually says...

nicole/bob wrote:
Two weeks ago, Peter Tatchell, a confirmed atheist, who is reported on the internet as having once said "not all sex involving children is unwanted, abusive or harmful", was a guest speaker at All Saints. As a longstanding member of the congregation, I strongly objected about this forthcoming event, but to no avail, so I decided there and then to leave this Church. I certainly do not regret my decision! Good Friday is a day of reflection on the suffering and sacrificial death of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Not the best time for our Parish Priest to choose to be flippant about the faith... What is happening to the Church of England? I am so sad and upset.
Good grief! I'm pretty sure if I looked hard enough on the internet I could find a report quoting Fireman Sam reciting Mein Kampf.
Phil Ritchie is a young, energetic, amusing and insightful man, father of three, husband and highly respected member of the local community. Put your prejudices aside - Peter Tatchell visited All Saints to give a talk on equality in marriage. I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess it was THAT, which you took offense to.
By the way, I'm an athiest and yet I go to church. Freaky, huh?
[quote][p][bold]nicole/bob[/bold] wrote: Two weeks ago, Peter Tatchell, a confirmed atheist, who is reported on the internet as having once said "not all sex involving children is unwanted, abusive or harmful", was a guest speaker at All Saints. As a longstanding member of the congregation, I strongly objected about this forthcoming event, but to no avail, so I decided there and then to leave this Church. I certainly do not regret my decision! Good Friday is a day of reflection on the suffering and sacrificial death of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Not the best time for our Parish Priest to choose to be flippant about the faith... What is happening to the Church of England? I am so sad and upset.[/p][/quote]Good grief! I'm pretty sure if I looked hard enough on the internet I could find a report quoting Fireman Sam reciting Mein Kampf. Phil Ritchie is a young, energetic, amusing and insightful man, father of three, husband and highly respected member of the local community. Put your prejudices aside - Peter Tatchell visited All Saints to give a talk on equality in marriage. I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess it was THAT, which you took offense to. By the way, I'm an athiest and yet I go to church. Freaky, huh? HoveRocksActually
  • Score: 0

6:13pm Sun 8 Apr 12

Tazzy1 says...

I agree but at CCK we have seen a rise in our attendance. We have had to go multi site because our center at new England has been out grown so we also now meet at the racecourse Brighton and also shoreham community center at 10:30 and see regular rise and also people responding to the gospel.
I agree but at CCK we have seen a rise in our attendance. We have had to go multi site because our center at new England has been out grown so we also now meet at the racecourse Brighton and also shoreham community center at 10:30 and see regular rise and also people responding to the gospel. Tazzy1
  • Score: 0

6:51pm Sun 8 Apr 12

Cyril Bolleaux says...

HoveRocksActually wrote:
nicole/bob wrote:
Two weeks ago, Peter Tatchell, a confirmed atheist, who is reported on the internet as having once said "not all sex involving children is unwanted, abusive or harmful", was a guest speaker at All Saints. As a longstanding member of the congregation, I strongly objected about this forthcoming event, but to no avail, so I decided there and then to leave this Church. I certainly do not regret my decision! Good Friday is a day of reflection on the suffering and sacrificial death of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Not the best time for our Parish Priest to choose to be flippant about the faith... What is happening to the Church of England? I am so sad and upset.
Good grief! I'm pretty sure if I looked hard enough on the internet I could find a report quoting Fireman Sam reciting Mein Kampf.
Phil Ritchie is a young, energetic, amusing and insightful man, father of three, husband and highly respected member of the local community. Put your prejudices aside - Peter Tatchell visited All Saints to give a talk on equality in marriage. I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess it was THAT, which you took offense to.
By the way, I'm an athiest and yet I go to church. Freaky, huh?
I disagree on Tatchell. He should not have come to All Saints. He is an atheist Marxist and an enemy of religion. He has disrupted sacred ceremonies ordaining priests and opposed the Pope visiting the UK. Hardly a model of toleration and freedom of speech.
[quote][p][bold]HoveRocksActually[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]nicole/bob[/bold] wrote: Two weeks ago, Peter Tatchell, a confirmed atheist, who is reported on the internet as having once said "not all sex involving children is unwanted, abusive or harmful", was a guest speaker at All Saints. As a longstanding member of the congregation, I strongly objected about this forthcoming event, but to no avail, so I decided there and then to leave this Church. I certainly do not regret my decision! Good Friday is a day of reflection on the suffering and sacrificial death of our Lord, Jesus Christ. Not the best time for our Parish Priest to choose to be flippant about the faith... What is happening to the Church of England? I am so sad and upset.[/p][/quote]Good grief! I'm pretty sure if I looked hard enough on the internet I could find a report quoting Fireman Sam reciting Mein Kampf. Phil Ritchie is a young, energetic, amusing and insightful man, father of three, husband and highly respected member of the local community. Put your prejudices aside - Peter Tatchell visited All Saints to give a talk on equality in marriage. I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess it was THAT, which you took offense to. By the way, I'm an athiest and yet I go to church. Freaky, huh?[/p][/quote]I disagree on Tatchell. He should not have come to All Saints. He is an atheist Marxist and an enemy of religion. He has disrupted sacred ceremonies ordaining priests and opposed the Pope visiting the UK. Hardly a model of toleration and freedom of speech. Cyril Bolleaux
  • Score: 0

11:23pm Sun 8 Apr 12

nicole/bob says...

Re. my comments about Peter Tatchell: this is not some obscure finding. It is all over the internet. Just type in 'Peter Tatchell & Paedophilia'. His controversial views on ****, open marriages, sexual freedom, under age sex, etc. are all exposed (none of them of course compatible with the Christian faith).

Whilst I respect Peter Tatchell's views as an atheist, I totally disagree with him but totally support his right to voice his opinions in a democratic society...it is a pity that he and his supporters do not take the same approach with those who have opposing views!

It was totally inappropriate for him to be speaking in All Saints Church. Just two weeks prior to his visit, he actually said on national television: "The Church of England should be disestablished. It is unfit for purpose". Hardly the words of a friend of the Church I have been worshipping at for the past 30 years.

I also totally object to the Gay Gospels (a book which suggests that Jesus was in a practicing homosexual relationship) being openly sold in All Saints on that same night.
Re. my comments about Peter Tatchell: this is not some obscure finding. It is all over the internet. Just type in 'Peter Tatchell & Paedophilia'. His controversial views on ****, open marriages, sexual freedom, under age sex, etc. are all exposed (none of them of course compatible with the Christian faith). Whilst I respect Peter Tatchell's views as an atheist, I totally disagree with him but totally support his right to voice his opinions in a democratic society...it is a pity that he and his supporters do not take the same approach with those who have opposing views! It was totally inappropriate for him to be speaking in All Saints Church. Just two weeks prior to his visit, he actually said on national television: "The Church of England should be disestablished. It is unfit for purpose". Hardly the words of a friend of the Church I have been worshipping at for the past 30 years. I also totally object to the Gay Gospels (a book which suggests that Jesus was in a practicing homosexual relationship) being openly sold in All Saints on that same night. nicole/bob
  • Score: 0

8:24pm Mon 9 Apr 12

nicole/bob says...

Another "own goal" by our local vicar when he states in today's Argus that:

1."He did not blame the Argus for publishing his slightly unguarded advice"
2. "I am going to stop giving advice for a while - I am going on holiday". Nice one, but isn't that precisely what a vicar is supposed to do and to simply light the blue touch paper and retire to a safe distance is simply not on.
3."Ooh, I hope the nationals don't pick it up"...well they did, not just the Sun but the Mail (check out their reports on the internet and subsequent comments by many readers)
4."The most insulting thing is some of the other papers said I was 48 but actually I'm a very healthy 44 year old". How vain and superficial is that. What we were actually hoping for was some kind of retraction for his gross and offensive remarks on this most holy of days...in fact we have received the reverse.

Compare and contrast his trite and frivolous comments with those of Archie Coates, vicar of St Peters Church Brighton reported in last Saturday's Argus entitled "Why the Easter story is still as relevant as ever"

Finally...for the Argus to suggest that our priest's "advice" actually increased the congregation is ludicrous...by definition, more people attend church at times like Easter and Christmas compared to other times.


Bob, Hove

PS...just wonder how many people will be attending next week?
Another "own goal" by our local vicar when he states in today's Argus that: 1."He did not blame the Argus for publishing his slightly unguarded advice" 2. "I am going to stop giving advice for a while - I am going on holiday". Nice one, but isn't that precisely what a vicar is supposed to do and to simply light the blue touch paper and retire to a safe distance is simply not on. 3."Ooh, I hope the nationals don't pick it up"...well they did, not just the Sun but the Mail (check out their reports on the internet and subsequent comments by many readers) 4."The most insulting thing is some of the other papers said I was 48 but actually I'm a very healthy 44 year old". How vain and superficial is that. What we were actually hoping for was some kind of retraction for his gross and offensive remarks on this most holy of days...in fact we have received the reverse. Compare and contrast his trite and frivolous comments with those of Archie Coates, vicar of St Peters Church Brighton reported in last Saturday's Argus entitled "Why the Easter story is still as relevant as ever" Finally...for the Argus to suggest that our priest's "advice" actually increased the congregation is ludicrous...by definition, more people attend church at times like Easter and Christmas compared to other times. Bob, Hove PS...just wonder how many people will be attending next week? nicole/bob
  • Score: 0

10:43pm Sun 15 Apr 12

nicole/bob says...

Hi Cyril...does this then mean that you approve of the crass and unholy comments of our vicar on the most holy of days?
We many long served congegationalists have decided to no longer attend this so-called church as a result of this and his earlier invitation to Peter Tatchell to speak at our once great church.

Shame on him.


Bob, Hove
Hi Cyril...does this then mean that you approve of the crass and unholy comments of our vicar on the most holy of days? We many long served congegationalists have decided to no longer attend this so-called church as a result of this and his earlier invitation to Peter Tatchell to speak at our once great church. Shame on him. Bob, Hove nicole/bob
  • Score: 0

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