UK vicar invokes God's blessing on BlackBerrys

Jan 11, 2010 By RAPHAEL G. SATTER , Associated Press Writer
The Rev. Canon David Parrott blesses computers and mobile phones on the altar of the 17th-century St Lawrence Jewry Church, in the City of London, Monday, Jan. 11, 2010, in an effort, he said, to remind the capital's busy office workers that God's grace can reach them in many ways. The short blessing capped services at the Christopher Wren-designed building - the official church of the Corporation of the City of London, which runs the capital's bustling financial district. Parishioners took out cell phones as Parrott recited a blessing over them and their electronic devices.(AP Photo/Sang Tan)

(AP) -- God bless this BlackBerry. A venerable British church has done what e-mail addicts and workaholics have been doing for years - invoking the Almighty's blessing on their high-tech gadgets.

The Rev. Canon David Parrott blessed a symbolic heap of laptops and on the altar of London's 17th-century St. Lawrence Jewry church Monday. An effort, he said, to remind the capital's busy office workers that God's grace can reach them in many ways.

"It's the technology that is our daily working tool, and it's a technology we should bless," Parrott said.

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 bustling financial district.

Parishioners took out cell phones as Parrott recited a blessing over them and their . A few held their phones up in the air as he ran through the prayer.

Parrott 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 didn't have much relevance for his church, which was "nowhere near a field in the middle of London."

Parrott took up his post at St. Lawrence Jewry (so-called because it stands in what was once the capital's Jewish neighborhood) 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."

Parrot said parishioners were welcome to leave their phones on during the service - so long as they kept them on silent.

Explore further: Privacy groups take 2nd hit on license plate data

More information: St. Lawrence Jewry: http://www.slj.btik.com/

1 /5 (1 vote)
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Wedding dance video goes viral

Jul 26, 2009

A Minnesota couple's joyous wedding dance featuring the bride and groom boogieing down the aisle to the altar has become a Web sensation, racking up millions of views on YouTube.

Fifth century BC objects returned to Greece

May 19, 2009

Greece on Tuesday reclaimed scores of ancient objects dating to the fifth century BC that Belgian, British and German authorities returned, the culture ministry said.

ISS crew gets ready to return to Earth

Sep 25, 2006

NASA says the Expedition 13 and 14 crews on the International Space Station are coordinating handover activities in advance of Expedition 13's departure.

Recommended for you

Privacy groups take 2nd hit on license plate data

Sep 19, 2014

A California judge's ruling against a tech entrepreneur seeking access to records kept secret in government databases detailing the comings and goings of millions of cars in the San Diego area via license plate scans was ...

Scots' inventions are fuel for independence debate

Sep 17, 2014

What has Scotland ever done for us? Plenty, it turns out. The land that gave the world haggis and tartan has produced so much more, from golf and television to Dolly the Sheep and "Grand Theft Auto."

White House backs use of body cameras by police

Sep 16, 2014

Requiring police officers to wear body cameras is one potential solution for bridging deep mistrust between law enforcement and the public, the White House said, weighing in on a national debate sparked by the shooting of ...

Chinese city creates cellphone sidewalk lane

Sep 15, 2014

Taking a cue from an American TV program, the Chinese city of Chongqing has created a smartphone sidewalk lane, offering a path for those too engrossed in messaging and tweeting to watch where they're going.

Coroner: Bitcoin exchange CEO committed suicide

Sep 15, 2014

A Singapore Coroner's Court has found that the American CEO of a virtual currency exchange committed suicide earlier this year in Singapore because of work and personal issues.

User comments : 3

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Heavymetal
Jan 11, 2010
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
danman5000
not rated yet Jan 11, 2010
"And when you exit the church, please remember to bathe your cell phone in holy water to complete the ceremony."
Leathersoup
not rated yet Jan 11, 2010
God blesses the BlackBerry right up until the batteries go dead or some messages are lost. Then he'll be doing the exact opposite.
mvg
not rated yet Jan 11, 2010
No wonder people don't respect religion anymore--

Blessing cell phones or farm impliments--total trivializing themselves.

The clergy have nothing of spiritual substance to offer--so that do THIS.