Tuesday, November 12, 2002

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 12, 2002
please forward widely and post (please forgive cross-postings)

SpiritfuXion Worship Experience Takes on Consumerism and Christmas


Sunday December 1st, 2002. Bellefair United Church, The Beaches -- 7PM.

Imagine a candle-lit space filled with visual art, a 16-foot multimedia projection screen, and a nativity decorated with advertising fliers - where the main characters are commercial mannequins. Imagine that the star announcing the Saviour's birth is represented by a large disco ball surrounded in a haze of incense. Thus, the stage is set for SpiritfuXIon #2. The SpiritfuXion team invites you to 'come as you are' to our attempt to bring a deeper sense of worship of God to an often stressful time of year for many people.

SpiritfuXion (pronounced 'Spirit-Fusion') is an experiential and participatory Christian gathering/experience. The aim is to be an
intergenerational and intercultural worship space that incorporates ancient worship patterns with future technologies and post-modern sensibilities.

"Frankly, I'm sickened and saddened by what has become of Christmas," says Rob Shearer, a member of the SpiritfuXion team. "Whatever it may have been, for many in our culture it's become nothing more than marketing and spending open-season. Yet, within its spiritual roots, I believe there are amazing possibilities for transformation, redemption and hope for justice and peace in a world gripped by war, corporate dominance, sadness and pain. Furthermore, in worshipping God, I believe that we may deepen our call and ability to live the gospel and challenge the greed, consumerism and personal loneliness which the One who's birth we celebrate never backed away from and which He challenged and healed."

The SpiritfuXion team digs across the spectrum to offer the best of evangelical/praise traditions, contemplative/mystical traditions, social justice/action traditions, and the openness and question-asking of liberal Christian traditions. Worship music can range from hip hop to high church, techno to rock, pop to punk, jazz to Celtic, and ancient chant to glorious choirs.

"We're interested in building on the culture of worship and that we started to explore with FuXion #1. We're going to tighten up a lot of the loose ends and the whole rhythm of the thing - and move deeper into the culture of worship and hope that we tasted in the first SpiritfuXion", says Shearer, who is also Minister of Christian Education at Bellefair United Church in the Beaches community of Toronto. "We're interested in a real, passionate, grassroots thing which comes from a collective experience of worshiping and seeking God with freedom. This is not a concert or performance. Rawness, rough edges, and struggle are okay. Come as you are and join in as you are called! Essentially, SpiritfuXion is about seeking and praising God, living just and loving lives, and connecting in community."

Reverend Michael Blair, who spoke on 'grace' at the first SpiritfuXion will continue us on this journey to rediscover the Christ amongst the Christmas over-packaging.

SpiritfuXion worship gatherings feature visual projections which, through the use of dramatic images, seek to enhance the music and worship experience. SpiritfuXion 2 will also feature a full worship/praise band, displayed art, drama, communion/Eucharist, liturgical dance, free fair-trade coffee and juice, and optional interactive worship stations. This time, stations will likely include: directed labyrinth, prayer/reflection space, painting, sculpture, advent wreath making, directed Christian yoga, drumming and meditation. The entire experience will be about an hour and a half long.

SpiritfuXion is an open-to-all, intergenerational, ecumenical/interdenominational event which is sponsored by Bellefair United
Church. You, your church group, committee, youth or young adult group, community or family are warmly welcomed to attend by the organizers and the church.

Location: Bellefair United Church - 2 Bellefair @ Queen East (the Beach/es) - several blocks East of Woodbine Avenue.

For more info, please contact Rob Shearer, Minister of Christian Education @ Bellefair United Church
Phone: 416 691 3951 Email: ucyouth@bmts.com
Updates @: www.spiritfuxion-toronto.blogspot.com

DIRECTIONS to SpiritfuXion:

Bellefair United Church is located several blocks
east of Woodbine, on Queen St. East in the Beach
Neighbourhood. There is limited free parking on
the streets surrounding Bellefair. Our address is
2 Bellefair Avenue. Bellefair's sanctuary and
washrooms are wheelchair accessible. We regret
that not all worship stations are accessible.

To get there by TTC, take the Queen St. streetcar
from downtown until you get to the Beach
neighbourhood, or go to the Woodbine Subway
Station and catch the Woodbine bus south to Queen
and walk a few blocks east to Bellefair...

If driving, take Lakeshore east (from either the
DVP or Gardiner) until it turns into Woodbine (it
curves north). Turn right on Queen Street. The
church will be on your north/left side across
from Kew Park. There is parking on most of the
major streets.