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Yoga teacher banned by Catholic church offered new venue
10:00am Sunday 7th October 2012 in News
A YOGA instructor from Hampshire who was barred from holding classes at a Catholic church has been offered a place by another church.
Cori Withell was barred from teaching a combined Pilates and yoga class at a Southampton Roman Catholic church because the practice is un-Christian.
Now the 36-year-old could be getting a helping hand from the Southampton Spiritualist Church, near the city centre.
It is one of eight centres to have come forward to offer Cori a venue to hold her classes.
“I’m hoping to be sorting something out this week. We have had a lot of positive feedback,” said the instructor from Allbrook, Eastleigh.
“At the moment it’s trying to find somewhere that everyone is happy with. It’s about trying to keep it close to where the church is. I have got to go and see the hall and see if it is suitable and I’ve got to think about hire rents.
“There has been quite an overwhelming response since the Daily Echo published the story.”
An unholy and international row broke out after Father John Chandler refused to allow Cori to use his church hall for her weekly classes.
Cori, who runs her own business, CW Fitness, said she paid a £180 deposit and started signing up people for her classes.
Once St Edmund’s Church, off The Avenue, found out the classes included yoga she was told they would be “against the church’s religion”.
Father John Chandler, of St Edmund’s, previously defended his decision.
“Because yoga is a Hindu spiritual discipline it is not compatible with Catholicism,” he said.
The two just don’t mix.”
It has since emerged that St Andrew’s CofE Church in Dibden Purlieu stopped 81- year-old Eileen Meegan and also a newly-qualified instructor from teaching yoga at its premises.