Silent clubbing at Canterbury Cathedral outrages some worshipers

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A pop-up nightclub in the venerable Canterbury Cathedral? The hosting in one of the highest places of the Anglican religion of two silent dance parties on Thursday and Friday arouses opposition from certain faithful, pushing the Church to defend its desire for openness.

Canterbury Cathedral will transform Thursday and Friday into a party venue, with 3.000 people expected for two "silent disco", during which participants dance to music broadcast via individual headphones and not traditional speakers.

The theme of these evenings, where it will be possible to drink alcohol: the 1990s, with hits from the era by Britney Spears, the Spice Girls, Whitney Houston or even Eminem and Oasis.

If places are sold out to attend, the concept also irritates certain believers, who plan to gather in front of the cathedral to demonstrate their opposition.

More than 1.600 have signed an online petition against the event and a rally is planned in front of the building.

“Everyone loves Silent Disco (parties), but their place is in nightclubs, not in Canterbury Cathedral,” defends Cajetan Skowronski, initiator of this petition in the text published on the change.org website.

"This will not draw young people closer to Christ. On the contrary, it will send the message that Christ and his Church and all the truth, beauty and goodness that he has to offer, are unimportant. Only entertainment deserves our attention more than God,” he further argues.

The Dean of Canterbury, the Reverend David Monteith, defended the event, saying it would be “respectful of the cathedral”.

“It will absolutely not be a rave party in the nave”, as the opponents claimed, he assured, conceding that he understood “that some will never agree to accept that dancing and pop music have their place in cathedrals". 

“Cathedrals have always been part of the life of the community in a much broader way than their primary role as a place of Christian worship and mission,” he added. 

Other similar events have already been organized in recent months in other British churches, for which they are also a means of raising funds to maintain these religious buildings.

Canterbury Cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage building located in Kent in the south-east of England, is the seat of the Anglican Church of England. Its archbishop is its spiritual head and as such, crowns in particular the British monarch, who is its supreme head.

Writing (with AFP) 

Image credit: Shutterstock / agsaz

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