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john davies
notes from a small vicar
from a parish
in Liverpool, UK

    Tuesday, March 30, 2004
    A place where you realise your belief

    The people of Liverpool 8 are a rich variety. The area hosts Europe's oldest Black community, the UK's oldest Islamic community and some of the UK's longest-standing West African, Arab, Asian, Caribbean, Greek-Cypriot, Irish, Jewish, Somali and ex-patriot Welsh communities. Among others. So it has a unique spirit, born of struggle and faith.

    Last year Liverpool Community Spirit commissioned Phil Cope to design an altar - a green, unadorned artwork referencing no particular religious tradition and all of them simultaneously, designed to be "an open space", "set apart", which the people of Liverpool 8 would be invited, as individuals or groups, to fill with their own thoughts and reflections.

    Cope defines an altar in the words of Gaanaman Gazon Matoja, traditional ruler of the Ndjuka maroons, Suriname, as 'A place where you realise your belief'.

    The book which records their response to the project's invitation, Altar 8, is a fascinating record of that community's diverse wealth, colour, ethics and faith.

    [email Liverpool Community Spirit]