So yesterday was a holiday here in the United States in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday. As a result, i heard a bunch of archival recordings of Dr. King on the radio, especially of his most famous speech.
Listening to that, i wondered why our church speechifying is so, well, boring. I mean, not necessarily in terms of content, but in style—even when the speaker is saying something stirring, there’s almost never any prosodic shifting going on, there’s no serious attempt to bring the congregation into the flow of the words.
And it’s not like this flat delivery is something inherent to Mormonism—if you listen to old general conference addresses, the old-school speakers (those who came of age in the nineteenth century) got into it. So apparently it used to be part of Mormon preaching—but now it’s not. So what happened? Why did we move away from interesting-sounding sermons to monotonous-sounding ones?
Faith Hill: Where Are You, Christmas?
4 years ago