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Invitation

In a once great city there stood at its heart a magnificent cathedral. Its beauty was breathtaking, its sheer size heart stopping. The outside edifice was covered in intricately designed statues of various saints while inside it was adorned with worshipfully inspired paintings.

The cathedral was cared for by a kindly old priest who spent his days praying in the vestry and caring for the poor. As a result of the priests tireless work this great building was known throughout the land as a place of safety and sanctuary. Onward to this services so that you can write your dissertation on http://usadissertationwritingservice.com/ for college preparation.A constant stream of people would approach this place seeking shelter.

Sometimes they would be wayward travellers; at other times they would be homeless and sometimes even murderers and thieves. The priest welcomed all who came to the door and gave completely without prejudice or restraint. Each stranger was, for the priest, a neighbour in need, the incoming of Christ. His hospitality was famous and his heart was known to be pure.

No-one could steal from this weak old man for he considered no possession as his own, and while thieves sometimes left that place with items pillaged from the inner sanctuary the priest never grew concerned, he had given everything to God and left it faithfully in his hands.

One evening in mid-winter, while the priest was praying before the cross, there was a loud knock on the cathedral? door. The priest stood and went immediately to the entrance. He knew it was a terrible night out and that his visitor would be in need of warmth and shelter.

Upon opening the door he was surprised to find that there stood before him a terrifying demon with rotting flesh, deadly black eyes and sharp bones protruding from his body. The demon stood at over nine feet tall and was covered in a bloody, pussy substance. His breath filled the entrance with a lingering stench and the droplets of water turned to steam as they hit his body.

”Old man”, the demon hissed, “I have travelled many miles to seek your shelter, will you welcome me in”

Without hesitation the priest bid the hideous devil welcome and beaconed him into the shelter of the church. The evil devil stepped across the threshold and in distain spat venom onto the tiled floor. In full view of the priest the devil then proceeded to tear down the various icons that adorned the walls and ripped the fine linens that hung around the sanctuary. When he became bored of this, the mighty demon went on to smash the pews and destroy the holy alter. He ravaged the cathedral while spitting blasphemy and curses.

During this time the priest knelt on the floor and continued in his devotions until it was time for him to retire.

”Old man” cried the demon, “where are you going now”

”I am returning home to rest for it has been a long day” replied the kindly priest
”May I come with you”, spat the demon, “as I too am tired and in need of a place to eat and sleep”
”Why yes of course” replied the priest, “come and I will prepare you a meal”

On returning to his house the priest prepared a meal while the evil demon set about destroying the house. He ripped up the carpets and smashed the various religious artefacts that adorned the house. When the priest came in from the kitchen the demon took and ate the meal that was offered. After this he turned his attention again to the priest and spoke,

”Old man, you welcomed me first into your church and then into your house. I have one more request for you, will you now welcome me into your being”
”Why of course” said the priest, “what I have is yours and what I am is yours”

At this the demon approached the old priest and towered above him. The old saint was unperturbed by this invasive presence and sat in silent prayer. The demon left that place never to return again.

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”I must get some rest” the priest said to himself, a little bemused by what had just happened, “tomorrow will be a busy day”. Once more he ascended the stairs, got into bed and drifted off to sleep, all the time wondering what wandering sage would visit him next.

‘Ikonoklast’ originally ran after each ‘Ikon’ service. The event facilitated a space where those attending ‘Ikon’ could develop stronger relationships within the emerging community. It was also a place where talented bands, DJ’s and visual artists, who had a broadly spiritual or specifically Christian perspective, could perform.

Due to some recent changes we are now planning to run ‘Ikonoklast’ a few times a year and instead provide one of our resident DJ’s ? for the after Ikon event. This will allow us to develop ‘Ikonoklast’ and take seriously the feeling in the community that the post-Ikon space should be more laid-back and geared to developing relationships.

While ‘Ikonoklast’ is not explicitly a worship event we wish to provide a context where spiritually driven artists have the freedom to perform. In addition to this it offers a first point of contact for friends of ‘Ikon’ participants. By doing this we aim to provide a place where people can come and meet the emerging community without having to attend an official service.

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