The Switch Glitch

This morning before the service, Linea, the worship leader, and I were talking about how the practice was a little rough around the edges. The worship leader jokingly said that we could only make so many mistakes, so hopefully we’d already used all of them up. I countered by saying that “there is only one way to do it right, but limitless ways to make mistakes.”

And it looks like I was right.

The major flub this morning was the omission of one song in the order of service in the bulletin. Since the sound/power point clicker person wasn’t at the practice, I’d touched up the slide errors and wrote down which songs did not have slides. As I was writing in “no slide” next to the hymns and the responsive readings, I thought I’d be helpful and type in “last slide” after the last chorus which had a slide.

The service started, and because I’d given my bulletin to the sound person, I was sharing the African-drum player’s bulletin. So I was reading it upside down. (By the way Yaounde and I make quite a remarkable percussion team.) Olivia did not want to stay in the nursery this morning, so Marc was holding her for the service, and I’d told him to get a blanket from the nursery so she’d feel cozy since she’s getting over tonsilitis.

We made our way nicely through the service when I remembered that Marc had been asked to lead the prayer time this week. This meant we’d have to swap Olivia and I’d go sit with her during the prayer and then come back up to play the offeratory.

I could see Marc knew what I was thinking, so after the one song, we each made our way toward the front pew. I was snuggling Olivia in the blanket and Marc was heading up to the pulpit when Janet started playing an intro on the piano. Then I remembered why I thought it seemed like there were more slides than songs in the bulletin…

One song got left out of the bulletin.

As Marc’s making his way down, the congregation starts singing but of course there’s no slide because a previous song had said “last slide” on the bulletin in the sound booth. I luckily caught the eye of the sound person, indicating that there was a slide, then I took Olivia over to Marc who’d gone to the front pew on the other side and who apparently didn’t realize that’d I’d need to play for this song. (And, yes, I have played the drums while holding a child, but only ever at a practice. And I’m pretty sure she would’ve tried to sing into my mic and grab my sticks.)

So I went up and played the song. Then we did the switch. Little Olivia walked up to me dragging her blanket behind her towards the platform stairs. Then Marc prayed. And we did the switch so I could play the offering. Then we did the switch so Marc could preach. Then we did the switch so I could play the last song. And then I got her for my meeting after the service, since Marc was teaching Sunday School. (But there were chocolate truffles at my meeting — they kept her happy, even if it did take 4 kleenexes to clean her up afterwards.)

I sure hope Olivia stay in the nursery next Sunday. Marc’s leading the worship. And I won’t be there.

Just another laid-back Sunday morning.

Posted in Faith, Family, Kids, Parenting | 6 Comments

6 Responses to The Switch Glitch

  1. Toni says:

    The new church we’re part of uses computerised song projection, and I’m wondering if it all requires far too much preparation and then constricts what you can do, sucking all spontaneity from a meeting. It also makes church too complicated (remember ‘those magnificent men’ – “up, down, around and around”). I lead worship there for the first time a week ago and, horror of horrors, changed the last song to fit the word. I didn’t get flack, but it did cause some hassle as everything is geared to pattern. OHPs *should* be more trouble, but they seem to be so much less difficult.

    I love simple church. Worship time where anyone can pray out, start a song or bring a word, a message (pre-prepared and sometimes discarded) and then fellowship afterward.

  2. Jean says:

    Yes, I do agree with what Toni said – simple church, etc. plus the fellowship. Amen

  3. Linea says:

    Well, I’m glad we are simple enough not to get bent out of shape if we have to innovate during the service or if I forget to play in the right key, or forget I’m supposed to doing the intro or which parts to repeat. Sometimes I get lost in the music, especially when the song sounds really good. So maybe good worship distracts me from being a really good musician, I don’t know. I sure do enjoy playing though. I can still raise my song to God even if my voice has gotten so rusty that it does not make beautiful sounds any more. I think really chaotic situations would distract from worship and that would not be good. But mostly the small disruptions or mistakes just lets us be real and recognize that in spite of our imperfections we can offer what we have to God.

    And the drumming was really good on Sunday – nice blend.

  4. Marc says:

    Linea: I said the same thing to Dixie about the drumming yesterday. Yaounde and Dixie work really well together.

    I almost mentioned this when I got up on the stage, but I find that those little mishaps tend to loosen people up, relax them a bit. In a sense, the mishaps during worship may actually serve to *improve* the worship.

  5. ian says:

    my church also uses electronic projection of songs and it can be quite a game of catch-up if a song is changed. but when the spirit leads, the song sheet has to follow. it is fun to see what the holy spirit does from time to time to disrupt services in this way.


  6. […] And then there was the juggling of the kids when I went to early morning worship practice and sometimes mid-service if Marc was preaching. It was really quite exhausting. Good. But exhausting. (And, now that I look […]

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