The Rev Stephen Coulter told parishioners not to sing the carol after he visited the West Bank. He told them the words ‘How still we see thee lie’ were too far removed from life in Bethlehem.
He said where shepherds once used to watch over flocks by night now security guards watched over the people living there. As a result the carol has been banned from all festive services in his Dorset parish of Blandford Forum.
“Besides, there’s thirty thousand people there. Hardly a little town, is it?”
Incidentally, those harps of gold in “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear” have got to go: insensitive display of wealth, doncha know.
(Via Christopher Johnson.)
Note: First sentence was re-edited for clarity.