Last night I preached in the Cathedral in Nelson. It's been my privilege to preach there on several occasions. It's also led to a learning opportunity for me. After a sermon or two I realised that the particular acoustics of a very large stone building require an adjustment to my preaching style:
- preach from full script, not from notes
- speak the script, with no (or may be just one) impromptu asides
- speak more slowly than usual (for me), enunciate very clearly, and no 'conversational speech'
- preaching from the pulpit is definitely the best location
Not all readers of this post will receive an invitation to preach in a cathedral but we may well receive an invitation to preach in a different building to the one we are used to preaching in. 'Different' may mean one or more of: different in size (length, height, breadth)*, different in quality of sound system, different in distance between position of preacher and position of congregation, different in ability to display graphics, etc.
(*Breadth is always interesting: a small narrow church is definitely different to a small wide church!)
We will need to be adaptive. Perhaps we should visit a new church for a practice ahead of the actual delivery of the sermon.
Final note here: I have discovered a new preaching resource site, relevant to 'Down Under': it's called 'Down Under Sermons'. OK so its Australia based, but its pretty close to NZ!!!!!!!!!
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