Kanye West's Sunday Service is too exclusive to be a church - Kate Bottley

Kanye West's 'Sunday Service' events are missing a few of the key ingredients found in most church services, like a sermon(Photo: YouTube)

Kanye West has been delving further into the spiritual with hist latest attention-grabbing project, Sunday Service.  

His wife Kim Kardashian and other members of her reality TV star family are among the select few allowed at the private gathering that skips over the traditional sermon in favour of music and dancing. 

The absence of a sermon was confirmed by Kardashian, who has shared snippets of the services on her Instagram, including one of rapper DMX praying for God's favour.

Kanye's longtime friend and collaborator Tony Williams said in the caption to a video of the Sunday Service that "the goal is to be able to communicate love effectively". 

Kanye himself hasn't said much about Sunday Service but his recent set to the hipster Coachella music festival crowd on Easter Sunday was further evidence of the spiritual intentions behind it. 

In the Metro, TV broadcaster and vicar Kate Bottley writes that although she's a fan of Kanye, she's not ready to embrace his idea of church just yet. 

She sees some elements of Kanye's Sunday Service that wouldn't look so out of place in a typical church on Sunday - like the choir, children dancing along to the worship, and even clergy appropriating modern songs for Christian purposes. 

But for her, the rub with Kanye's Sunday Service is partly Kanye himself and partly the gathering's inward focus.

In addition to questioning his politics, she calls Kanye "arrogant, self-centred and probably the biggest egotist on the face of the planet", although she qualifies this criticism by acknowledging that perfection isn't a qualification for ordination.

"Perfection and priestliness have never gone together," she says. 

But she goes on to explain what the bigger issue is for her with the Sunday Service.

"The thing is, Sunday Service isn't a church. For me, where Kayne's Sunday service ceases to be a church is in its exclusiveness," she said.

The Rev Kate Bottley is a familiar face on British TV and was a contestant on the 12th series of 'Celebrity Masterchef'.

"The music might be spiritual, the message reflective of gospel values, they might even share communion in the form of the pre-service low fat low carb brunch, but the minute it limits who can be there, that's when it can't possibly be a church.

"God knows the Church throughout the centuries, to its great shame, has got it spectacularly wrong.

"The Windrush generation can attest to a lack of welcome they received when they first tried attend their local parish churches, as can the LGBQT community, but to be a church it must at least try and welcome all comers.

"When a church works best it isn't a palace for the perfect but a hospital for the sick and broken and its doors should always be metaphorically, if not literally, open." 

She pointed to the longstanding tradition of churches to provide care for the needy in the form of homeless shelters, soup kitchens, food banks, coffee mornings, toddler groups and home visits. 

"I wish Kanye all the best with his spiritual journey and with this venture, I'll even pray for him, hoping that he might pray for me too, but until he and the rest of his congregation have organised Doris to be driven to bingo, buttered bread for the luncheon club or helped with the school nativity play, he isn't a priest and Sunday Service isn't a church."