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mystery worshipper home reports from the uk and ireland reports from the usa reports from australia and new zealand reports from canada reports from elsewhere famous and infamous reports comments and corrections
What is this?
Since ancient times (ok, 1998), Ship of Fools has been sending Mystery Worshippers to churches worldwide. Travelling incognito, they ask those questions which go to the heart of church life: How long was the sermon? How hard the pew? How cold was the coffee? How warm the welcome?

The only clue they have been there at all is the Mystery Worshipper calling card, dropped discreetly into the collection plate.
If you would like to become a Mystery Worshipper, start here.
See our archive of reports
UK & Ireland
Oz & NZ
Recent reports

> Quizzed on sermon at Westminster Chapel, London
> Incense but no toe dipping at Holy Trinity, Chicago, USA
> Wow! St Paul's, Chicago, USA
> Hissing masks sermon at St James, Sault Ste Marie, USA
> On my own at St John the Evangelist, Barrhead, Scotland

> Karaoke (but nothing crazy) at Singapore Cathedral
> Santa appears at Shepherd of the Desert, Sun City, USA
> It just felt right: Great St Martin, Cologne, Germany
> They love their church: St Henry's, Chicago, USA
> Decent and orderly: Broome Anglican Church, Broome, OZ

> Unbeatable! St Paulís Pro-Cathedral, Valletta, Malta
> Concert or service? Trinity Church, Bay City, USA
> One prayer or three? St Gregory, Cheltenham, UK
> Powerful worship at All Saints, Belfast, Northern Ireland
> Welcome & warmth at St Andrew's, Bethune Road, London

> Old Catholic or not? Schiphol Airport Chaplaincy, Amsterdam
> Sidesman annoys at St James Cathedral, Toronto, Canada
> Evocative, memorable: Sts Peter & Paul's, Buckingham, UK
> No smiles at Queen of All Saints Basilica, Chicago, USA
> Meaningful, heartfelt: Village Church North, Surrey, Canada

Editor's choice

> Cake and fireworks at Laird Street Baptist, Birkenhead, UK
> Incense triggers alarm: Blessed Sacrament Shrine, USA
> Well done, Vicar! St Stephen, Birkenhead, Wirral, UK
> Nautical and nice: St Nicholas with All Saints, Wallasey, UK
> Transcendent moment at Grace Cathedral, San Francisco

Comments, corrections and removals

For the latest comments on and corrections to Mystery Worshipper reports, please go here. Reports over two years old can be removed at the request of the church reviewed. Please email here for further details.
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The best of Torold
The Mystery Worshipper known as Torold, among other names, passed on to glory in November 2015. Her sharp eye and quick wit brought much pleasure to our readers and will be missed. See a representative sampling of the best of her reports.
Easter 2015
Easter 2015
Our Mystery Worshippers had a busy Holy Week: being poked with umbrellas, spotted but ignored, taking in glorious polyphony, and hearing the Resurrection compared to popcorn! Read all about how they got through it.

Christmas 2014
Christmas 2014
On Christmas Day 2014, our Mystery Worshippers ding-donged merrily their way to both of Liverpool's cathedrals as well as to churches in New Zealand, Arizona, Colorado and Texas. Read all about how the herald angels sang for them.

camino pilgrimage
The Mystery Pilgrim
One of our most seasoned reporters makes the Camino pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela in Spain. Read here.
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