[Rector]

Singing for me

 

Mr. Edmond said, "I'm singing for myself, I just let others listen".

I was one of those privileged fools who had been cajoled into performing on Reflections. Reflections was a TV program which few got to see. WIN4 in Wollongong, South of Sydney, would screen it as their last piece of viewing for the night. In the early days that meant a time close to midnight. As the years went by it got later and later. I mean, when else would you screen a religious program?

They usually taped us after Bernard King's cooking program. Bernard would do his thing, performing as usual, and so we would sit around twiddling our thumbs. And then we were on.

I hated going second. Luckily, most of the clergy were petrified and let me go first. Yet there were those times when I would defer to a man in a hurry. I would then have to watch the shear horror of a colleague overawed by the technology of a Television studio. If I wasn't nervous by the time I got there, I sure was when it was my turn.

On most occasions I did my little piece free from intrusion. There was something about the whole exercise which seemed to free me from the constraints of speaking to people. You see, in a TV studio there are hardly any people around. For Reflections there was usually just a camera operator. It is as if no one was listening. So, I just did my own thing without anyone around. A bit like practicing a speech in font of the bathroom mirror. I performed my script for myself and enjoyed doing it. No one was really listening. I mean, who would be watching TV after midnight? Actually quite a few people, but then you could convince yourself that no one was out there. And those who were, well, the performance was not for them; I just let them watch.

Of course, I had learnt a trick in amateur theater; the players must live the role, the audience but sees it all as if through a keyhole. Not quite the same thing as a preacher who speaks to the back wall of the church - a disturbing habit, may I say. Rather, it's like the preacher who lets you into his musings, who takes you into the questions he has buzzing around in his mind, who lets you see the mysteries he sees, rather than shoving them down your throat.

Was it not this way when the Word became flesh and dwelt among us and we beheld his glory, the glory of the only Son of God?

 

[Pumpkin Cottage]
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