Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping

Guest post by Steve Sherman

This week UNC and Internationalist Books play host to Bill Talen and Savitri Durkee, better known as Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping. Bill and Savitri hail from NYC, where their pentacostal anti-capitalism started with preaching against sweatshops in the Times Square Disney Store.

Since then, the Reverend has performed enough Starbucks exorcisms to get himself permanently banned, held services inside Wal-marts, and spread the gospel of community, justice and anti-capitalism through revivals across the country. He's been profiled in the New York Times Magazine (and the London Observer Magazine) and has a book, "What Should I Do if Reverend Billy Is in My Store?" just released by the New Press.

The Reverend will be giving talks about his work Tuesday at Ibooks and Wednesday on campus, and will lead a revival service Thursday night. For more information, visit

Schedule of events:
Tues., Feb. 28 - Workshop at Internationalist Books (Chapel Hill), 7pm.
Wed., March 1 - Pit preaching (possibly a preach-off with our own Gary the Pit Preacher) noon in UNC's Pit
Wed., March 1 - Lecture, 4:30pm, Student Union 2518A (UNC Campus)
Thurs., March 2 - Church Revival, 6pm, Hanes Arts Center Auditorium (UNC Campus)



Anti-consumers can shop for "The Church of Stop Shopping" on CD here and Reverend Billy's book here.

Do I get this right? I can BUY a CD or book about NOT BUYING stuff? I love it.

I just heard some of Rev. Billy's preaching in the Pit, and indeed, he was competiting against Rev. Gary Birdsong (Billy was winning with his megaphone and message). Rev. BIlly is a pretty fun guy with a great message.

You can be against excessive shopping and still buy stuff once in awhile. Corporate leaders with golden parachutes that fire tens of thousands of workers (FORD) want you to think you're for them or against them. After all we the "consumers" are the ones with the buying POWER.

Just got this invitation......

Earth Blessing Ritual and preemptive exorcism
against the demons of Walmart/Big box

Thursday March 2 (today!)
1PM, on the site of the proposed Walmart in Chatham County
(across the street from Starpoint on the county line at 15/501)

Park at Starpoint Grocery or ALR Electronics across the street.
We'll waqlk together together to the site at precisely 1PM or as near as we can get.

Order of Worship

Procession to the site, with drums
Dancing with water ritual
circle and earth prayers
casting out of the walmart-big box demons
fleeing the site

Please come. Hearts will be moved and the earth will shake and we'll have a little fun.

From Rev. Billy's website: We like independent shops where you know the person behind the counter or at least - you like them enough to share a story.

So please, feel free to stop by Internationalist books to purchase a copy of Rev. Billy's book.


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