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The Day I Went To Church in a Strip Club

By Patricia Paddey

I’d never been to a strip club before. And so I admit that even as I forced myself to put on my fearless journalist’s hat (for the sake of my husband and daughter who accompanied me) my heart was Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 11.09.43 AMbeating just a little bit faster as I walked through the doors of The Manor strip club in Guelph, Ont.

I remember wondering, for a fleeting moment, how my 98-year-old mother-in-law would react if she knew I had invited her son and 18-year-old granddaughter to accompany me on a work-related assignment to a so-called “gentleman’s club.”

But this was church, after all. And reporting on the Church at the Manor would not only offer the novel opportunity to get my first ever glimpse of the kind of space where women disrobe for men’s entertainment, but it would allow my husband and I to worship with our youngest child – who had moved away from home and into residence at the University of Guelph a few weeks earlier. Even if that worship would happen in a dark, windowless room adorned with mirrored walls and glass “bubble pipes.”
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