So, got back from New Wine North and East late last night. Still got lots to process (which I will eventually get around to blogging about) but we had a great week, so here are my top (mostly humorous) reasons why Newark is better than Shepton Mallett (and maybe a couple why it isn't)
1: Its SO much easier to get to from virtually anywhere east of Reading. 1 hour 50 mins beats the 9 hours it took one of my friends to get to Shepton Mallett from Essex a few years back. No more M25 or A303 for me on the last day in July ...
2: The campsite is flat with short grass; no more marital disharmony levelling the van or putting up the awning!
3: It is smaller, only 6 and a half thousand people, so more personal and a lot less queueing.
4: Let's face it, there was less Boden and Joules and more scousers and tattoos and therefore it was more like real life (sorry LSE folk).
5: [Getting theological now, steady on] There was more overt affirmation of women in ordained ministry from the stage. This week for me there was another watershed moment when the evening introductions in the Meeting Place (that's venue 1 in old money)were done by a clergy spouse, who was a man!!
6: There was a concerted effort to explain what was going on for the uninitiated; lots of "you may not have done this before..." This is in the spirit of 1Corinthians 14 for me.
7: AWACS and Red Arrows flypasts!
and 2 why not ...
1: It's just one week, so no cashpoint, no recycling, and a minimal shop. Takeaway food quite limited too. If we had another week, or a Soul Survivor, I appreciate these things would be easier to arrange.
2: Currys .... [you had to be there]