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CLUB CULTURE IN EDINBURGH

RESEARCH PAPER WITH RECOMMENDATIONS FOR CHURCH IN CLUBLAND

1999 Researchers: Paul T, Fiona T & local Clubscene Warning: this 2011 update contains xxx material (;-)
2011 update: What came out of this research in 1999 was a funded project which did not implement our key recommendation for bottom up leadership policy in its funding a key to avoid creating yet another sect (eg. NOS) and thus detach it from its source: its ground among our clubbing fraternity here in Edinburgh and exhaust its project workers in the vain attempt to reconnect it back to those it was created to serve. The bad news is: A few of us agreed, however to try and make it work (duh!). Result: we used up huge amounts of energy trying to keep it from being top down via its funding with strings and failed to keep it from being coopted and moved away from its groundedness among clubbers here in Edinburgh. After 3 years, the cooption + top down funding with strings - had done its damage; it was now a project FOR local club scene not BY local club scene; it no longer belonged to Edinburghs local clubscene and was completely unable to respond to its creative grassroots questions and aspirations; its dreams and its rage and as was promised at research phase - so we agreed to shut down the project. The good news is 8 years later, we and our friends have returned to our original love and are now embraced again and involved in and learning with and serving with our beloved scene in Edinburgh which has now diversified into a hinterland of amazing art, film, poetry, activism, thinking, music projects and festivals, innovating stuff around economics politics justice and deepening and widening questions about independence not just of wee eck from from wee Westminster but of soul and land to stand up to new empires. We are back in the land again this lesson is burned into our very being - many of us have vowed never to align ourselves with power again, especially powers dressed in the garb of jesus and other coopted good guys we will always ask whats in the tin not just what it says on it- most of all: to stay faithfull and not betray the land and folk here and a very different Jesus, the artist who speaks not from power but to power from among the poor and our streets and our hearts every again.

What have we learned?: to do our research and thinking for ourselves to


help us better serve our own community, sphere or scene and bury our digital dead sea scrolls in hard drives away from eyes of the powers that be

especially the hungry ones again, sorry everyone (;-) Nothing about us, without us, is for us activists popular chant in
apartheid south Africa & adopted by todays scot poverty truth commission Mimesis and Cooption beware of these thieves dressed in white, learn what they mean now or they will steal, kill and destroy you, your project, your movement of everything - even yourself. So LEARN now before it happens: be prepared!

COMMISSIONED BY: ST CUTHBERTS CHURCH OF SCOTLAND RESEARCHERS: FIONA BROOKER AND PAUL THOMSON & FRIENDS

CLUB CULTURE IN EDINBURGH Purpose of the research:


Report on the origins of Club Culture and where its members think it is heading. To outline the values and worldviews of the Clubbing community

Methodology:
Visit as many Clubs, Record Shops and Pre-Club Cafes as practically possible within the next two months. Talk to Club managers, staff and clients about themselves and the clubs they go to. Interview friends and personal contacts involved in dance culture. Review our own experience and history. From this, produce a short film/video if practically possible.

Dream and rage: Key questions:


1. 2. 3. 4. What are the values of the clubbing community? What lifestyle(s) and cultural patterns does this community create for itself? What does this community think of life, God and religion? What does this culture dream and rage about?

The Researchers:
Paul Thomson has a Diploma in Biblical Studies from Sheffield University. He is currently managing a youth-run Magazine Project in Pilton, called The Script and studying for a P/T Masters in Theology, Ethics and Communication at New College, Edinburgh University. Fiona Brooker works as Publicity and Admin assistant to the Priority Areas Fund which is a grant making trust within the National Mission Department of the Church of Scotland. She has a Degree in Divinity from Aberdeen University. Both have been involved in developing indigenous forms of Church Community and Worship within rave and dance music scene since it hit their home town in Aberdeen in1988. Beginning with the setting up of an alternative community based Worship group in Aberdeen then 4 years with now defunct (NOS) Nine Oclock Service in Sheffield. Fee and I wanted to add this at the time but were convinced not to: The famous NOS collapse into a dominating, dehumanising cult within Church of England is a major driver for this research to learn the lessons from NOS about HOW NOT TO socially organise and catalyse new movements and find more humane tactics in new soil and landscape of Scotland.

CONTENTS
What is Club Culture? The Edinburgh Scene: The Life The Places The Experience The People The Values Conclusions and recommendations appendix 1 appendix 2

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WHAT IS CLUB CULTURE?


Dance music began in the mid eighties as an underground movement with musicians and DJs experimenting with a new kind of music made possible by the development of new technology, particularly the computer sequencer and the sampler. Instead of listening to their favourite guitar bands, people began flocking to the new clubs to dance all night to the high energy beats and rhythms of computer generated music. People came together and found themselves drawn to this new music and lifestyle. soon there were mass gatherings of thousands in the countryside, now made illegal by the criminal justice bill in 1994. AND IN THE BEGINNING ALL WERE THERE TO DANCE .....AND DANCE .... AND DANCE .... Clubbing and dance culture is all about large groups of like-minded people, and any time people join together to do something they cant do alone, something that our wider societys none too keen about, theyre being political. Sure because drugs are involved as well, its inevitable that theres government concern, some interest from the powers that be but, even without the added legality of pills powder and puff, dancing is an act of rebellion. Whenever you throw off the constraints of daytime life and escape to another world, you are questioning the rules, even if you dont watch the news and you never voted in your life.1 Clubbing has now graduated to a main stream pursuit and has passed to a new generation of clubs and clubbers. Now incorporating many music style, lifestyles and philosophies dance culture has become an umbrella term. Clubs specialise in hip hop, hard house, techno, drum n bass, garage ... and often cater for different tastes on different nights. Club Culture has become big business and advertising agencies recognise and target clubbers as an identifiable group who spend 20% more than mr and mrs average. Designer Clothing, Shoes, Records and CDs, Magazines, Books.

Two thirds of 18-24 year olds club at least once a month, nearly a third go once a week Ministry of Sound

One million of us went clubbing every week in 1998. Clublife 98

Ministry of Sound, The Manual: The who, the where, the why of clubland, Headline Book Publishing, London 1998, p27

THE EDINBURGH SCENE THE LIFE:


In Edinburgh there are three immediately identifiable areas where people gather to go out know as Lothian Road, the High Street and Broughton Street. These three areas provide everything to meet the needs of those seeking a good night. A pre-club bar in which to meet your mates, (if you havent already gathered in someones flat already!) drugs already obtained earlier that day, after a few drinks you are ready to move on to the club of your choice and dance the night away till three in the morning. Whereupon you may find a post-club party to go on to or simply retire for a smoke (an illegal one of course!) with the afore-mentioned mates. The next day, or I should say the next late afternoon if you are up to it you may stagger down to Coburn Street to browse the record shops and magazines or search out some new clubwear before retiring home again to recover sufficiently to go again that night. Eating? well that can happen or not depending on how the mood or hunger pang moves you. Then of course there is work on Monday so Sunday night has to be tempered a bit in preparation. ... such is the life.

map showing main concentrations of clubs and venues

THE PLACES:
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FRIDAY Lift at La Bell Angele. 10.00pm - 3am. 7 (6 NUS; 5 mem). Monthly. Techno and trance. DJs Paul C and LFT.

SATURDAY

Joy at the Wilkie House. 10.30pm - 3am. 8 (6) before 11pm; 9 (8) after. Monthly. Progressive gay club with the brilliant Maggie and Alan in the Main room Pure at the Venue. unleashing house, hard house and queer 10.30pm - 3am. 6 (4) techno; Trendy Wendy and Sally Findlay Fortnightly. Two floors. Techno and House. through the back with disco and Cheesy Residents Brainstorm, Twich and Dribbler anthems. and The Bill. The Party at Revolution. Manga at La Bell Angele. 10pm - 3am. 5 10-11pm; 6 11pm 10.30pm - 3am. 7 (6 NUS; 5 mem). midnight Monthly. Drum n Bass. DJ Sir Ossie 7 after. Weekly. Door Policy is dress to impress. Sublime at the Wilkie House 10.30 pm - 3 am. 9 (7) The Subway West End Fortnightly. Scotlands biggest Trance and 4pm - 3 am 1 Weekly. DJs playing chart Techno club. Support from Idge in the music. Main dance floor and through the back in the Blue room with Beany and Felix. Tribal Funktion at the Venue. http://www.sublime.ik.demon.co.uk 11pm - 3am. 7 (5). Fortnightly Funk and Disco. Resident DJs Mateo and Matos. SUNDAY For full club listings consult The List produced fortnightly available for 1.95 from most newsagents. Taste at the Honeycomb. 11pm - 3am. 8 (6 members). Weekly. Fisher and Price in the Main room with hectic house and garage. Martin Valentine and Stuart Barrie through the back.

210 Club nights at present in Edinburgh on weekly/fortnightly or monthly (includes pre-club bars with DJs). Prices usually range from free to 9. (less if you are a member, free if you are on the coveted guest list) There are Clubs on from Mon-Sun every week of the year. Some interesting names include: The Kirk, The Gathering, Higher Ground, Sundaze, Sunday-Sunday.

THE EXPERIENCE: Taste: Hard House Night For Dedicated Clubbers


Sunday night is not a popular club night for people who are working the next day but we had heard that Taste was worth a look. We met at the City Cafe around 11 pm
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and had a couple of drinks and finding the club wasnt open yet when we arrived went for one more in the Ceihlah house beforehand. The Honeycomb is a low vaulted building, with three rooms joined by inter connecting tunnels. In the larger of the two dance floors the DJ was playing hard house and if was already filling up. The other room was a more mellow affair and funkier. This is known to be a gay club and it showed, particularly in the way some of the men were dressed - tight white T-shirts and jeans. I was surprised to find it wasnt more camp, there was very little crossdressing going on and having visited gay nights down south expected something less covert. What always strikes you is the relaxed happy atmosphere of a gay night and how friendly everyone is and this was no exception. We soon got talking to the regulars and blended in ...

Sublime: Mellow Techno


A friend of mine came up from Sheffield for the weekend and being an avid clubber she wanted to go out. We spend the early part of the evening getting ready to go out, then bussed it up to the cowgate to the Wilkie house where Sublime was on that night. It was a really good crowd. we started off with a drink at the bar and my friend who had stuffed some MDMA (Estasy) in her shoe went off the girls toilets to do the business. She had offered me some too by the way but I had declined. When she came back we went on the dance floor and were there the rest of the night. It was a brilliant set, the music built up as the night went on and the crowd got more and more energetic and charged up as folks pills took effect. The main room, was a large high ceilinged room overlooked by balconies on all sides from which white chords had been suspended. Among these lines white spheres of various sizes hung like planets in the night sky, spinning slightly with the movement of the dancers. Centre stage was a giant bhuda with more of the same white chords emanating from him, fanning out the entire length of the stage. The floor was so full that it was hard to dance at all. sweat was dripping from the roof in big dark brown splashes and one landed on the back of my white T-shirt, worn for the occasion so that it would glow when the strobe went on. Eyes bulging and stripped to the waist a young bloke dancing next to me leaned in and pointed at the bottle of water in my hand. I passed it to him, wondering if aids could be passed on by saliva and deciding it would be rude to refuse him a drink, after all every one knows you must drink plenty when you are pilled and I wouldnt want him to pass out on me. The friend I came with has made a few friends of her own already. In an unfamiliar club she sets about talking to at least half a dozen people round her as soon as she hits the dance floor so she feels at home. My legs hurt from dancing and I am beginning to feel like I should have taken her up on her earlier offer to keep me going. the music is high energy now and the crowd are wild as the night ends with DJ Idge accepting the appreciation of close to 600 dripping bodies whistling and clamouring for more and we leap furiously to one last track before the lights finally go on. Kim makes for the stage to talk to the DJ and her new found friends invite us both to an after-club party, which would inevitably involve a lot of sitting about talking, listening to more music and smoking marijuana. On this occasion I confess to disappointing everyone by deciding to go home, It had been a great night and having danced myself into a state of complete exhaustion had to give in to my advancing years, I cant do it like I used to.

A Works Night Out:


It was only a few weeks since I had started working for the Benefits Agency at Castle Terrace. It was soul-destroying work. Most of the staff were depressed, popped pills, smoked like chimneys and drank like fish. What most did to forget it all was go out on the piss at the weekend. I decided to join some of the girls one Friday night.
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There were six of us and I was a newbie to the Edinburgh scene. I had dressed up a bit because I guessed they would and primed to bring my own bottle I handed it to my work-mate to hide in her handbag before joining the queue for Walkers disco on Shandwick place (I, being a clubber didnt carry such a thing!). It didnt work, all accessories were duly searched and bottles confiscated, we still passed scrutiny though and made it to the dance floor. The music was a mix of new romantic and disco diva from the seventies and early eighties and the crowd was dressed to kill. Slick haired men in suits were leering over lycra clad ladies and blossoming bosoms teetering on high heels around a classic collection of handbags on the floor. The drinks were expensive and we decided to move on quite quickly, bemoaning our wasted entry fee. Having recovered our booze we moved on to the Rutland No 1 Bar. I can remember being stopped for I D by the two intimidating bouncers in the doorway who thankfully believed me and let me pass without too much trouble. Once in there It was a noisy crowded affair. I was immediately approached by a youngish bloke who put his hand on my head and said something to me that I couldnt quite catch because the music and crowd was so loud. I glared and told him to get his hands off and he complied, letting me pass to join my friends, who by now had gone to the back of the bar. We ordered cokes and disappeared to the toilets as girls do, but not as I was accustomed, this time to top up our drinks with the spirits we had brought with us. Well on now, one of our group began dancing provocatively to the music and attracted some considerable attention from the men around her, one in particular who started to dance with her, joking around. The rest of us danced a little and then filled up our glasses again. I was getting pissed off with the general raucous atmosphere and we moved on up Lothian road to the Barracuda, which has since been closed down. It was a small club done up with blue neon lights and there was a crowded bar and seating area around the dance floor, which was mostly empty but for a few self-conscious looking punters glancing every now and again in the mirrors which surrounded the main dance area. It wasnt long before I was approached by a dark and handsome young man who turned out to be Canadian. I explained I was not on the pull and he danced a couple of tracks with me and went back to the girl had come with. Deciding to make the best of it I danced and danced to get it all out of my system and then left my friends to get the night bus home.

Citrus Club: Clubbing isnt what it used to be


I had been invited to the Citrus Club by a friend and we decided to meet at the Traverse bar. When I arrived one of our party, Graham was at the bar and introduced me to his mate Iain, who he had asked to join us. While we were waiting for Liz we sat down and chatted for a while over a beer. It turned out Iain had been a big cheese in the club scene. He had been involved right at the beginning and travelled the country doing reviews on clubs and raves for club magazines. He got out when he got fed up with the special status - free drugs and booze all night for a good write up and went to Australia where it turned out the aussies were even more up for it and he came back to get himself sorted out. In his opinion its become more about backhanders and DJ worship now than pure dance and has lost the freshness of the old days, though he still goes out sometimes and knows a lot of people. Liz arrived and after we had talked some more we moved on to the Club. It was a free night being a Thursday and they were trying to attract punters. We were offered a complimentary vodka or whisky shot which we gladly accepted. We went to find the DJ and his partner who were friends of ours and chatted a while before sitting down at one of the bench seats at the side of the dance floor. It was a dimly lit venue and rough looking. This was an unusual night for us, we had gone along because we knew the people putting on the club which was called mode Organic and the music was mostly Ska with a bit of Northern Soul thrown in. looking

around at the crowd they were a mix of students discovering retro and older, first time round, mods reminiscing about the halcyon days of their own misspent youth. The dance floor was half empty but there were some enthusiastic dancing going on and we reminisced about school discos and had a go ourselves. We called it quits about 1 am and walked up to the Cowgate, settling for a drink before we shared a taxi home around 3 am.

THE PEOPLE
Anonymous Secretary age 32 How often do you go out? The only club I go to through choice is the Citrus Club, I am probably one of the older crowd now and I will often decide to go out later on. I dont often go out with that in mind. Usually its because weve been to a pub with a good juke box and you think Id quite like to dance now. Often to the Citrus Club on a Sunday because the drinks are cheap and you can have quite a long night without spending much money. What should the church look like for our for our culture? If I ever do go to church its always to straightforward Mass and being a bit of a traditionalist the church wouldnt have to do anything special for me. I would feel patronised if I thought that people were making a big effort to do something special for me to make me go to church. Do they think I am too simple to grasp the plain straightforward religious service? Dry ice and flashing lights or gimmicks wouldnt do anything for me - Having said that I wouldnt knock it if it worked. I dont want to go to church but I think the world needs something. I worry about the whole morality of the world and wonder if the decline in morality has something to do with people stopping going to church.

more quotes to come ..... The First Time


The first time I entered a club was in 1989. The first thing that hit me was the powerful, exciting beat, the beautiful synth sounds, the bass drilling into your chest and the incredible atmosphere - it was electric. Everybody was dancing - not in couples like they use to, just everybody together, arms in the air, packed together in a joyous, noisy, happy, sweaty crowd. I was greeted as soon as I got near the dance floor by this girl- she was going round passing out grapes to people, others were passing around sweets and bottles of orange. On the dance floor it was easy to dance - you couldnt help it. Complete strangers would come up and say hello or hug you. Ill never forget this one tune - people were singing and chanting along to it- like some african tribe... Brothers Sisters, one day we will be free, From Fighting, violence, People crying in the street When the angels from above

fall down and spread their wings like doves well walk - hand in hand Sisters, brothers, well make it to the promised land It made the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end...fantastic. It felt like even the atmosphere of the town itself was different after that night During the week I kept bumping into people that Id met at the club...in clothes shops record shops, pubs, walking down town - we would laugh and talk excitedly about the night - exchange names, phone numbers, news about next club night on or other stuff that people were getting up to during the week Suddenly I knew all of these people...the buzz was amazing...couldnt wait to

THE VALUES: Move from Live to Disc Culture:


In the 1990s records have been enculturated within the night life of British dance clubs to the extent that it makes sense to talk about disc cultures whose values are markedly different from those of live music cultures. What authenticates contemporary dance cultures is the buzz or energy which results from the interaction of records, DJ and crowd. Liveness is displaced from the stage to the dance floor from the worship of the performer to a veneration of atmosphere or vibe. The DJ and dancers share the spotlight as de facto performers; the crowd becomes a self-conscious cultural phenomenon - one which generates moods immune to reproduction, for which you have to be there. 2 Since the 50s to 80s music has centred around Live gigs. Where great importance was placed upon the performer or band and the uniqueness of the Live performance as opposed to the mass production of recorded pop music which took second place. Since the late 80s the move has been to value the disc or recorded music, often released with several mixes, intended for use by Club DJs. Clubs have taken over as the new Live event. DJs giving recorded music a unique feel by mixing tracks together and digitally changing the original sound. Live gigs by bands have taken a big back seat and instead of being performer/audience based Clubs allow greater participation by the crowd. DJs are the worship leaders if you like in dance culture, as directors of the communal experience. A good DJ responds to the crowd in his choice of records, building up the energy and tension created by music and crowd until the event climaxes.

Live Culture Performing musician/s Musician perform to an audience emphasis on musician-star

Disc Culture Sampled sound combined in a studio DJ and Crowd interact through records emphasis on atmosphere

Authenticity:
In club culture authenticity or credibility is one of the most significant values. Something is seen to be authentic once it has become normative. e.g. clothes and music become popular once a significant number of people are wearing or listening to it i.e. once it has caught on. something may be accepted because it is original and creative value e.g. an inventive record track played regularly and well received in
2

Sarah Thornton, Club Cultures: Music, Media and Subcultural Capital, Polity Press, 1995, p30-31

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a Club is authenticated by the DJ and crowd together. Equally, acceptance can be because it is a natural organic development in the dance community as a way of life e.g. bum bags caught on in the late eighties because it meant you could keep your money next to your skin while on the dance floor. Conversely the same thing can lose its credibility once it has become mainstream, bum bags are no longer credible as essential club wear through widespread use.

Mainstream v Alternative:
Mainstream and Alternative have become commonly understood jargon words in Club culture. The mainstream clubs usually seen as commercial, playing chart music and commercial disco e.g. Revolution (Lothian Rd), Walkers (Shandwick Pl.). While Alternative clubs see themselves as underground. Playing music gleaned from pirate radio and backstreet/specialist record shops. Often non or low profit making businesses e.g. Sublime (Wilkie House, Cowgate), Taste (Honeycomb, Blair St). The dress codes and ethos of the crowd that frequent these distinct groups are identifiably different. Mainstream clubs, dubbed by alternative clubbers as cattle markets, tend towards dressing to impress and typically are more about drinking with your mates and pulling a partner for the night. People frequenting mainstream clubs often dont identify themselves as clubbers at all. Underground clubs have much less strict dress codes and are much more about dancing together as a crowd, taking drugs, and getting into the music. Often transcending boundaries such as race, sexuality and religion. Both groups make gross exaggerations and generalisations about eachother, largely it has to be said, through second hand information. For the Clubbing community mainstream has much wider context than commercial disco clubs but incorporates society as a whole. Representing the majority view of mass media.

Alternative Friendship/Group identity Meaningful work Oral Media Self Expression Now DJs/Records Open/Accepting Underground Visual Spiritual/ Experiential/Mystical Media Critical Celebrate Sexuality Circular Structures

Mainstream Individualism/Nuclear Family Career/9-5 Mass Media Conformity Past/Future Musician/s/Live Bands Dogmatic Visible Textual Religious Media Led Embarrassed by Sexuality Pyramid Structures

Relationships:
In nearly every interview relationship was the most important thing that people identified that they were looking for from the clubbing experience. One clubber described the Edinburgh scene as one big happy family. The music/dance event is not enough in itself to be a success, there has to be a feeling of togetherness, a WE.

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Communication:
Primary forms of communication are highly valued i.e. word of mouth, personal stories. Micro-media such as flyers, flypostings, listings (e.g. The List) keep people informed about whats going on and where its happening. But largely communication happens through the grapevine.

Age and Ethnicity:


Going out dancing crosses boundaries of class, race, ethnicity, gender and sexuality, but not differences in age. The most avid clubbers are between 15 and 19, followed by those aged 20 - 24. Gradually declining as people form partnerships either living together or marrying. Single people are more than 10 times more likely to go clubbing than married people.3

Sarah Thornton, Club Cultures: Music, Media and Subcultural Capital, Polity Press, 1995, p 15-16

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CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS:


An overview of some identifiable features of an indigenous church growing within this culture may look something like this: Lifestyle fuelled and shaped by the Christ of the Gospels Theology and practice done from within the culture, Incarnation and interpretation via Dynamic Equivalent Translation process; a long-term 3-way process involving their own culture, christian culture and biblical cultures. Teaching that encourages discussion, exploration and questioning Tackling of ethical and political dilemmas of the day Worship environments, community spaces, artefacts and resources created by the culture for the culture A safe place for those abused by power, an unsafe place for those who habitually abuse power A bias toward the excluded, marginalised and the different Relationships more important than media and technology; people-based not event-based Orality - primacy of narrative, community stories, personal stories in the light of The Story - the Gospel, over dogma and rigid belief systems Continuity - rooted in the past, gives hope for the future and is vitally involved in the present. A way on for those in the culture who are older and dont want to lose something by having children and long term relationships Actively involved with initiatives that serve the culture - with no strings attached Involvement with wider church, religious groups, activists, community and social action projects

Bridge Building: Historic Church and Club Culture


1. Get to know the culture and people in the culture - Identify needs, values and mystical experience; the traces of grace within the culture 2. Get involved in meeting some of these concerns and needs and/or Identify people or groups within or near the culture attracted to or consciously attempting to live out the Gospel and those concerned within Historic Church. 3. Create a bridge: Encourage and work with them to plant an indigenous form ofchurch within their own culture as an evolving partnership.

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Some ideas to explore:


God: Emphasis on God as Loving Cosmic community of 3 persons who know what it feels like to be human. Gospel: presented as a dangerous message This distant God - likes us - he has an ancient tradition of standing up for the poor and oppressed - it wasnt enough one of them had to become one of us - this One spent his life doing good, healing, giving hope, encouraging people to believe again, to live again, to realise that they are favoured by God above the all those who unjustly rule them; awakening power within those who feel powerless and value within those who feel worthless. Ironically, He - was regarded as a failure, abandoned by his closest friends and by his God, abused, left for dead - this One is our way home. Christology: explore link between Christ as The Big, Hidden Story behind the Cosmology of our time and Christ as a raw, physical human being - shunned by the establishment of his day and at home among his crew of disciples, the disapproved and the outcast. Theology: A craft that we are all involved in for our time, becoming part of a history of biblical interpretation stretching over 3000 years Church & Discipleship: Become part of The Story Acts chapter 76600453 Worship: Celebration and reflection - use of video projections to create electronic stained glass , combinations of programmed and live music, dramatic ritual for communion and spaces for prayer, quiet and reflection - contemporary forms that connect with traditional and ancient forms. Preaching/Teaching: Debates, discussions, stories, presentations - T.V. style with couch and seats, video clips, roving microphone, presenters interviewing theologians and practitioners etc. including some traditional forms.

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APPENDIX 1

WHAT COULD CHURCH LOOK LIKE IN OUR SCENE?


Meeting on: Thursday 15 April 1999 Present: Dave, Fiona, Mark, Paul, Paul Apologies: Peter, Ian Purpose of the meeting to discuss and imagine the possibilities of what church would look like for our culture...

A church for our culture ....


would meet the needs of the people, especially needs not met by standard church actively work within the culture reach into the community and cross parish boundaries provide help and resources be there on a long term basis use a liturgy, pastoral care, worship and language that was culturally produced use media that was enhancing not distracting early in the evening (7-12 pm) not necessarily Sunday non-linear forms of events (eg eastern orthodox style open all day come go) multi centred activities eg prayer, worship, debate, councelling, cafe, social, creche, bar all going on. freedom to be who you are and discover God the way you want to fun, relevant and accessible carefully designed space, thinking about shape of building, interior design cafe through the week open for people to drop in - generate self supporting income, art events weekly club night - a recongnisable safe place start simple and expand accountable and autonomous eccumenical and city wide

Concerns:
Q. Should we start small or launch right in? Q. accountable ? ecumenical? A. Have one main historic church as Host for support and accountability Or citywide hosting: links with other groups - a board of reference? Q. What if loads of dissatisfied christians join us or it turns into a haunt for church youth groups, swamping and elbowing out the hidden and vulnerable in our culture ? Cultural Clashes between christian culture v club culture God: domesticated in kirk culture v God: as more unconscious, unspoken mysticism within club culture Body/sexuality: fear v love of body, sensuality and physicality Oh No! Now we are really going to get it! We are going to offend some christians who think we are going too far

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and we are going to disappoint some of those in the culture who think we are not going far enough. The Problems of being Public church = public and polity (social organising and agents of political power that speaks Our plural and post-modern culture will confront us - we cant hide as privatised believers putting on a thing for ourselves in a wee corner or should we? Biblical matrix of stories often make cosmic claims that clashed then and clash today with a market of competing worldviews its praxis and polity is out in full view in public square among other claims and stories on global spacesation earth; folk will ask: what the church believes about stuff, what does the bible say ? what do you say as broken saints with L plates on, beginners wandering around with big questions and little bare feet - what the heck should we react to old expectations or stereotyping of us as cosmic landlords and divine know-alls?

Two models for consideration: Medieval model:


cathedrals were an expression of awe and worship built using creative resources and craftsmen part of the liturgy designed visual and 3-D space dramatically involved the congregation were organic and evolving places of commerce catered for pilgrims built to last

Club model:
Good points can be Group experience freedom responsive and expressive bar refreshments intensity and buzz acceptance and security good advertising different rooms and areas Bad Points can be too loud too dark, smelly, crowded, sticky too much drink and substance abuse unfriendly security too expensive no quiet area not enough seating isolating at times narrow age range too late at night DJ too hidden lack of focus lack effort and imagination

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APPENDIX 2

FIRST STEPS - SOME INITIAL SUGGESTIONS


Planting Indigenous Church Within Club Culture - Edinburgh 1999/2000 Practical Suggestions for the run up to the first event/setting up of facility 1. Build Community Base - (begin with core team of 8 - 15 people?) These are just ideas, a starting point.... Gathering and Community building can begin while planning for the event. Although much can be done by sharing resources of those involved at the moment A regular- full blown, church, community-based event would, at some point, need Properly trained and equipped Staff , a base and a budget. Resources to aim for: (varies according to size/nature of event/facility/community) Structures/models/roles/launch strategies can be taken from a variety of sources: Community Projects, Art Projects, NightClubs, Mission Organisations, Other Churches, Small Businesses , New Media and Music Collectives, Local - Issue based Charity Organisations, Peer Education Projects, Club Events, Groups and organisations, Think Tanks, Research Projects and Base Communities. Resourcing Two main Areas: Community and Event. 4 P/T Workers? (Variable according to Community needs and Scale of Event): 1 Pastoral/Community worker 1 Pastoral/Arts/Development Worker: 1 Events Manager/Coordinator/Technician 1 Admin/Finance Worker Meeting Place/small office set-up (with phone/email/computer etc.) Room (music studio/worship practice/event run-throughs) Core Team: Involved in building the community and running the event. Wide range of skills, including: artists, musicians, worship leaders, community builders, teachers, D.J.s, healers, theologians, pray-ers, organisers, mystics, technicians, liturgists. Important: Core Team/staff especially Pastoral/Arts Development workers need to be involved, culturally fluent and aware of issues and needs of the culture in order to ensure that the church is built into the very fabric of the culture and doesnt become alien to it. Pastoral Workers may need to have Pastoral/Community Work experience, Theological training and awareness of what constitutes good working practice: e.g. health and safety, equal opportunities, working with volunteers etc. Also awareness of issues involved with: HIV, Sexual Health and Drugs. P/T Workers enable people to keep in touch with/work in the culture. There may be better ways of resourcing those involved - need to develop ways of supporting team ministry and community involvement, guarding against split between staff and unpaid team or creating a bottleneck effect; positions not leaving room for the growth and development of others - plan for growth before it happens.

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Basic idea of Staffing and Roles: Pastoral workers grow pastoral workers - worship leaders grow worship leaders, Coordinators grow coordinators- Passing on skills and recognising potential and gifts of others - looking at how they can develop and grow into more responsible roles - staff build teams that replicate and pass on skills - so that it keeps growing and no-one feels completely indispensable or left out. Pastoral Workers+ Community builders need the time to get around, meet and get to know people. Keeping in touch with those they know within the culture as well as the group that is forming. Looking at imaginative ways of building community at every stage of development. Building Community at the heart of the Event In this Culture, even small scale dance/worship/liturgical/teaching events - demand an immense amount of time, energy and expertise - involving: the writing and rehearsing electronic & live forms of music/ transporting and setting up environment props, screens, video and slide projectors, P.A., lighting and music equipment/ logistics of organising teams, equipment hire, venue hire, speakers for teaching & debates, video material for presentations and environment, meetings for strategy and planning. The event is a place of faith, energy, worship, celebration and communion, the danger is that Pastoral workers can be deflected sucked in to the event, unable to focus on the needs of the community. Once the event is launched, and numbers start to increase, at least one pastoral worker needs to focus mainly on overall community development-ministry-teaching-training teams, with as little involvement in running the event as possible, the Pastoral/Arts Development worker can help bring the event together, with the team, rooting it in a theological, cultural and ethical basis. Pastoral support/input both IN and AROUND the event - holds community and event together.

Pointers For The Group at Present:


The most Important thing at this stage for the group is to learn and grow together. Getting out - doing things together, experimenting, sharing ideas, having fun, trying out new ways of praying together and living out the gospel within their culture. Group Philosophy: Work on brief statement of philosophy and aims - what are we for? Name: Who are we? (this one could take a while!) Establish main focus: at this stage - this is the main focus at the moment Boundaries: Negotiate with each other and Host Church - boundaries and limits of operation (Matt 10 v5-14)-this is what we can do, this is what we cant do- for now (establishing limits provide the group with a feeling of security while they work) Background research: can also look at culturally familiar models: launching community projects and starting up nightclubs as well as learning from: other alternative worship groups, traditional church planting models, New Testament and Church history. Workshop Day: Around various ideas and aims explored so far - opens it out to others who wish to get involved at this stage. How do we involve new people: Most people joining at this stage will wish to become involved straight away - bringing their ideas, skills and expertise to the enterprise - needs careful and thoughtful ways of helping people into processes of involvement. Studio/practice area needs to be in place as soon as possible - for those working on producing/writing/practicing worship material etc. or trying out/experimenting with visual material. Storing equipment. Needs to be reasonably sound proofed - beats/loud singing etc. Could be multi-purpose at this stage - focus - meeting area - accessible staff and team

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An office area - phone/computer etc. - this could be in a team/staff members house to begin with - accessible- staff and team Meetings: Strategy&Design - Format of Event/Venue/Facility Meetings: with Host Church Budget/finance - Financial Plan worked out. Bank Acount. Keep records/receipts etc.

Role of Church as host for us in Edinburgh could be:


Support, counsel and advice to fledgling community - Historic continuity and help with establishing boundaries, providing security. Support to staff and team - Accountability. Rear Guard - helping the group to handle any opposition encountered. Memory: helping it to remember its roots in the historic faith-traditions and gospel. Connector: Help it to develop relationships with other agencies, community projects, local Government, other advisers, theologians and wider church and society. Resource: Theological, Ethical and Pastoral input. Ground the new - keep it from flying off on its own or getting too much out of its depth.

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