Let’s address the elephant in the room right away, Nexus talking religion makes as much sense as getting relationship advice from Taylor Swift or having Kendal Jenner solve racism with Pepsi. Nexus is largely a collective of godless heathens who, were they ever to set foot in a church, may spark an apocalyptic event talked about in the Book of Revelations.
Yet every few years we can’t help but kick a fucking hornets’ nest. In the late 60s we took on the Lady Goodfellow Church because they were scared of the growing generation of Kennedy Catholics. Since then we have nailed an easter bunny to the cross and turned religiosity as a construct into a punchline. Why? Because we are snide and elitist. This isn’t going to be this but it is going to start that way. If you are religious then please stick with us till the end before you start writing your letters because, honestly, we are running out of frames.
VACATE THE LADY GOODFELLOW CHURCH
Some of you may create a convincing argument for the Lady Goodfellow church. But if that argument mentions it being a historic building then your argument is exactly the same as those arguing for confederate statues in the states but without the same degree of hate.
Here is the thing, everything used to be something before it wasn’t. The Cowshed used to be a place where we milked cows. That in no way should stop us from tearing it down and building a Bakehouse and a laundromat. Likewise, the Lady Goodfellow served a religious community for decades providing spiritual instruction, compassion and understanding. But does it really service the plurality that is a diverse student community now? We are going to say no.
It’s here we would like to add our other disclaimer. Brother Andrew is a lad. We aren’t saying we would remove the worship, just relocate.
A NEW ENDURING LEGACY
It is easy to fall into tragedy and hopelessness and not see a path out of it. Last year the madness and tragedy of March 15th made us all stop and reevaluate what was important. One of the things the WSU has worked on with the University has been prayer rooms for our Muslim students that cater to their specific needs. While we don’t want to diminish or demean those efforts the reality is that it was “the best we can do at the time.” But what if we could do more?
We have already written about our WSU clubs village. The centrepiece of this would be a new community multi-faith centre. A shared state of the art house of worship for every religion practised on campus. With socialisation and bookable spaces for some of the faith based clubs, single access prayer rooms, and resources for each groups specific needs.
HOW WOULD IT WORK?
Largely exactly as it does now with opportunities for each community to have set services of worship or prayer, a small kitchenette for catering and some small event spaces. Religious leaders on campus could work together for scheduling and student interfaith committees could meet as a committee to organise both singular and shared experience including campus faith days in the club village.