I’ve never posted a sermon before. I’ve never thought that it would add a great deal to the ether. However, 80 people of varying ages were all talking about the incarnation in the hall this morning after I blindsided them with this.
I read out John 1:1-14, prayed and then climbed the pulpit. I then put on a call centre headset (a relic from one of my previous lives) and then acted this out:
Hello, you’ve got through to the Big Brother research office. My name’s Robb and I’ll be taking your call this morning. Before we go any further I need to inform you that all calls are recorded and may be broadcast in the final edit of the show… In any order…. and…. at any time between now and the year 2059.
At this time I need to remind you that Big Brother is a reality TV show. That means that we are looking to show people in their entirety. This means that we may choose to use any of the material that is recorded and that it is the responsibility of the participants for their own behaviour.
If you are prepared to agree to these conditions then we can proceed with the call.[pause]
May I remind you that your answer is legally binding.[pause]
OK that’s excellent.
Before we go any further it is important to establish that it will be practical for you to come down here. Will you be able to come down here for an extended period of time?[pause]
So you are able to leave your Father behind and come down here?[pause]
Are there any special arrangements that we need to make for your arrival?
No, you are happy to come down here in exactly the same way as everyone else?
That’ll be good.
Have you seen the programme before? Things are a little different now that we have moved to channel five.[pause]
You have? Great!
It is important that you realise the full implications if you are to come down here.
Let’s start with some of the practical matters.
Coming down here will mean that you will be required to do many of the normal things that everyone else does. There is no special treatment for people. There will be times for people to eat and sleep as you would expect.
Do you have any dietary requirements?
… ah I see, you want to be treated just the same as everyone else. That’s good.
As you are aware of the format of the programme, I won’t need to remind you that you will be entering the house with 12 other men. These people will be your companions when you come down here.[pause]
So you are looking forward to meeting people. Great.
In the past we have had some… erm…. interesting people.
So far this year we have already got a banker who would be joining you down here.
We have been a little worried that this may cause some friction.[pause]
Well some people are obviously concerned about the current financial situation.[pause]
Well people feel that they have been betrayed by them.
Now that they have received all these taxes as well…[pause]
So you think that is someone you could spend some time with. Goood.
We do tend to attract colourful characters down here. If you remember a few years ago in the celebrity version of the show we had Samantha Fox. As I am sure you know she had a colourful career in the newspapers. Obviously if you come down you may well find yourself spending time with people like her.[pause]
Good… I just wanted you to be aware because people often worry that this sort of thing can affect your reputation.[pause]
So you’re quite prepared to live with the consequences…
Obviously not everyone is as… erm… exotic as this.
In the past we have found that people often respond well to someone they can relate to… the common man shall we say? With that in mind we have already signed up a guy from Whitby. He has spent most of his working life on the trawlers. He has a really strong accent and he doesn’t take any nonsense. We’re hoping people will be able to relate to him.[pause]
Ah, I see… These are just the sort of people you are hoping to meet whilst you are down here.[pause]
It is our experience that over the time you spend down here you will probably become close to these people. Obviously some people are more popular than others.
We have found that different groups can form. Sometimes this happens because of personality conflicts but sometimes over something like race or religion. Who can forget what happened with Shilpa Shetty.[pause]
Yes I see what you mean about having to meet people as they are.[pause]
The problem is that sometimes things can turn nasty. Sometimes people are forced out of the house.[pause]
You are aware that this may be a very public experience.[pause]
So you are happy to follow someone else’s will.[pause]
Even if it isn’t yours[pause]
No matter how painful the experience is[pause]
Sorry sir, I was just wondering if I could take your name?
Could you hold on a moment.[Covering microphone]
Christina, Christina. I’ve got another one.
Come on you know the ones. The religious ones.
This one’s priceless. You should have heard the name he gave.
Perhaps I should ask him if he knows David Ike.[Uncovering microphone]
Sorry about that sir, I was just having a problem with my computer.
Where were we?
I’m going to need a few more details. It will be really good to have you come down here…[Leave Pulpit]
And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.