We discussed topics over a beer and food at the Royal Oak including setting up a regular football game, the success of the recent Shelter Project placement at the church and the possibility of Dave staring an informal men’s bible discussion group.
The night’s main event was the local conjurer-for-hire Dan Bowring (who is often seen disappearing beer at the bar). He showed us some jaw-dropping tricks including replacing a deck of cards with a block of glass and producing cards from unsuspecting punters’ jacket pockets. Despite trying to make myself as inconspicuous as possible, I was chosen as the mark for one particularly good trick. He managed to turn a £20 note I reluctantly handed over into a £50 note (unfortunately he also turned it back again!).
Dan took the time to answer questions about the skill and dedication needed to be a magician. He gave us some amusing anecdotes about impromptu tricks involving a lobster and a rabbit, described encounters with some celebrities and also shared a little of how his Christian faith impacts his life. Dan talked about how although faith is something he is still working out, attendance at his church has often provided him with important and memorable moments of learning and reflection.
Overall, the general consensus was that these nights should become quarterly events. Having only had brief chats with people at services, it was excellent to put some time aside to get to know each other a bit better. I am sure I am not the only one at church who struggles to hold down a conversation when young children are in tow!