Other Incidental Things I learnt On The Billy Ray? Project

The below are snippets from the Billy Ray? interviews.

On ordination:

I remember going to his monkification. I remember him having to lie down, face down, nose on the floorboards of the scout hall, facing with his head pointing North with men blowing smoke over the top. This Islander guy sitting in the front row, obviously getting really bad asthma from the smoke, was coughing his lungs up and no one doing anything or even looking at him and I was like, this is it, this is what it’s all about, this person could be dying here and everyone is going ahead with the rules of the church 

#19, Alexander Miller

My father was living in NYC back in 1980, and answered a newspaper ad with a letter and presumably a small cheque as per the ad’s instructions. A short while later he received his official card, showing him to be an ordained minister in some phoney church, obviously. He wasn’t a preacher, he just had a licence to be a preacher if he wanted to be one. He was proud of it, he thought it was really cool. He was raised a Catholic but I think he had serious doubts about Catholicism and certainly my mother had fundamental doubts about Catholicism so I think for him doing this thing where he became a minister was sort of like a thing where he could make light of the issues that he had with his background. What I got from him was it was just fun, you can just take religion fairly lightly, use it to get good parking spaces

#14, Patrick Donovan
On growing up:

When I was first growing up we were in Mirfield, Yorkshire, which is an ecclesiastical vicar training college, it’s part of the University of Leeds and [my father] was a lecturer there, so basically I was surrounded by priests. Because all the lecturers wore the full uniform and so did all the students, and I was aware of what my dad did and because I thought all blokes did it, I thought that when I grew up I’d have to wear all that too

#2, Andrew Jackson

Have you ever been to a service in a mental hospital? It’s very different, it’s very informal. My father could be doing a sermon and someone would stand up and pull their trousers down, or shout out “what are you on about, you’re talking rubbish” and stuff like that, it was quite surreal. There were hymns, an organist, but no choir, but there was the wafers and wine, communion, all that sort of thing. I just remember it always used to feel so warm in there because they always used to whack the heating up for patients who were on medication. I just remember always thinking it’s so hot in there. I still remember Claude the organist who had no fingers. I remember Everyman the religious programme did the service there once. I remember in the background, them catching dad finishing off the communion wine 

#5, Andrew Law
On being a son of a preacher man:

I bet you in the States, in large cities, there’s a support group somewhere for the sons of churchmen yeah, and I’d love to just sit in one of those just to see how common the experiences are. I’m fascinated because as a kid I never had a friend who was also the son of a preacher so I never had anyone to relate any of that experience to. I don’t know whether all this stuff I talk about being a consequence of being a preacher’s son is actually just normal, human stuff and I’m dressing it up

#10, David Cleaves

One thing that always makes people laugh is that vicars order all the stuff that you get in church from a mail order company and so all the stuff like wafers and all the clothes are in this big Argos type catalogue, so I used to show people this and that sort of stuff freaks people out at church school 

#2, Andrew Jackson
On first hearing the song:

I’d say I was probably a teenager. I don’t know for sure, but I’ve known it for ages. It was in that Tarantino film that brought it back, wasn’t it? And I knew it, I knew it long before that, although I didn’t have the album before that. The album is one that I meant to have. I read Mystery Train by Greil Marcus, he’s an American music writer, Mystery Train, great read, anyway very entertaining and it’s got a discography and it goes mental about Dusty In Memphis and I read that when I was about 15 or 16 or something and I always meant to buy the album but never did for ages and ages but I always knew the song

#6, Martin Ritchie
On other things:

He’s a scientist as well, our dad, like a real proper scientist and spends most of his time working on this theory which is an adaptation of the theory of relativity. [Science and religion] can go hand in hand. There’s a society called The Society of Ordained Scientists who are all vicars or priests of some description who are also like proper PhD scientists at the same time, and he’s just been made like the chairman of it. They’ve got a hundred or so members, or more maybe, and they all have the same sort of philosophy which is that they are all genuine scientists who believe in evolution and the whole nine yards, but they also believe that there’s a purpose behind it and they see another dimension, which is what dad thinks

#3, Joshua Barber