Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Confessions of a church cleaner

Water jug
Originally uploaded by goforchris.
I'm just back from the last stint for now of church cleaning. My partner-in-crime and I somehow let the first week of our duty pass without us, and for some reason we're only on for three weeks this time, so we've got off lightly ... but that's fine. What we both realised, however, if that we have a dislike of routine cleaning (that's the hoovering and dusting) and much prefer the more esoteric tasks - though the hoovering has been done, religiously, because that's what people notice. Apparently.

But what we really enjoy is the brass. Take the jug in the pic, taken four years ago when it hadn't been used in living memory. I've just finished polishing it, so it now gleams brassily - I think it looks like copper in the photo. We also did the holder for the Paschal Candle. Last week we did the brass lectern - that takes about 30 minutes if you do it properly - and the crucifix on the altar, and the altar candles. We washed the tiles in the sanctuary. I polished the bookstand ...

For two pins we'd have censed the church while we worked, but we were a bit pushed for time. The wood polish ran out, frustratingly, but I did the grubby pew ends where people's hands go and left the seats to be cleaned by ... well, bottoms, actually. I think some wood shampoo wouldn't go amiss - maybe after les travaux occasioned by the acquisition of a lottery grant?

But I mustn't get carried away. Right now if you breathe in Holy T you get paint flakes falling like dandruff on the carpet, and my cleaning days are over for another spell.

Besides, I don't clean my own house ...


  1. As I can see it was really great experienc for both of you - you should be pleased now!

  2. LOL, Christine. When I was on church-cleaning rota I was the same - more thorough than I ever was at home.