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God box

cardboard church?

God box

Artist Peter Majendie (above) is building about fifty cardboard, 1.2-metres-square, “god boxes” for people to use as prayer or quiet rooms around Christchurch.

The one above is located on the corner of Lyttelton Street and Cobham Street in Spreydon.

“They can be whatever they want to be to each person. They can be used as changing rooms for all I mind,” Peter Majendie says. “I just thought there was a need for a place of reflection in Christchurch. Even if you have no religious affiliations, you can just sit and have some time out.”

Yes – there’s a risk they will be abused and vandalised…

No endless debates. No committee meetings. No synodical motions. No…


Read more about this project here.

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6 thoughts on “cardboard church?”

  1. Brilliant idea
    I try it as mission idea at my parish church either group of un-church teenagers .
    Send me how too ?

  2. Wonder what people will use them for/ if religious institutions will get involved? You mention vandalism- is there much of that in Christchurch? It’s not the image your community projects from afar.

    People can make prayer/ meditate anywhere in any situation..but not acheive congregation or community. Or a discipline?

    As an art project deconstructing ecclesiology ( and reflecting the construction of the larger cardboard Cathedral )it’s interesting.

    I’ve joked for years in America if churches keep splitting and rebuilding eventually we’ll all have one each. Church of one vs.’where two or three gather in my name, there I am with them.’

    1. I’m not personally aware of much vandalism, Tracy. The article mentions that his work of the 185 empty chairs (the number of those who died in the 22 Feb 2011 quakes) “had been the target of vandals in the past, with people stealing and damaging the chairs”. I found that very sad – it had not occurred to me. When I’ve seen that work there are usually people there silent and thoughtful. In other areas there is some tagging here and there. I guess there will always be some who do things out of thoughtlessness, frustration, and boredom. Blessings.

  3. Sociologist Stanley Cohen described six causes for vandalism:
    *to deliver a message such as art or anti-social idealogy
    *childish games
    *to get intentionally locked up
    *random act of rage.

    I think much ‘acting out’ is a combination of these things, with people targeting objects rather than people maybe because it seems harmless…yet I don’t generally see it as a positive or acceptable thing, it frightens and upsets people, it is basically disrespectful.

    One British street artist has made graffiti an elaborate intelligent art form http://www.banksy.co.uk/

    But thinking about this topic makes me realise that’s how many Christians view the changes occuring in their religions: that people are vandalising ancient or valued structures or traditions. Iconoclasm.

    How not to destroy each other’s deity through accepted customs and culture was a fundamental concern of Christ: You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything unclean.

    But most humans don’t respond to being told that with enlightenment and personal change do they…even by the one they follow.

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