Monday, April 5, 2010

Tenebrae reflections

The wost i have ever felt after a church service was post a Easter Sunday service four years ago. For some reason the church i was working for decided to not hold an evening service (with the rest of the staff members departing on holidays). I overturned this and organised an impromptu tenebrae service.

I thought it was awful (everyone else thought it was pretty good, even quite moving).

From my point of view, i knew the descent into darkness happened out of order. I knew that one of the readers went before they should have. I worked a 13 hour day and it caught up with me.

Afterwards i just wanted to cry.

This year, i gave it another go.

It went much, much better.

I was more organised and gave the readers individual instructions. I went through the entire service multiple times to ensure that everything would be in order. I printed out the readings, having collected them in advance.

But, when i do it again it will be further tweaked.

The instructions to the readers will include a spiel about adjusting the microphone and waiting until the lights of the previous person are extinguished before getting up.

To add length to the service I'll look to include communion (which is in the original service that i base it on).

I'll be aware of emergency exit lights in the church building (a darkened sanctuary has the mood killed by a bright fluorescent green sign) and cover them (OHS won't mind!).

Finally, I'll make sure i don't take a short cut with the sound. With the intimacy of the service we just used a microphone into the guitar amp. The problem? This is not hooked into the hearing loop and when you are alerted to this midway through the second reading it is too late (sorry Mavis!).

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