Glorious Failure

A very dusty hour and a half was spent on Friday trying to get audio from the church to be heard in the hall for the benefit of parents and those working with children who sometimes use the hall and meeting room during part of the 1030 service on a Sunday.

I had come up with the bright idea of trying to use a video-sender gadget to, well, send video from the camera that is used to record sermons into the hall and on to a television. This glorious plan would have not only got the audio into the hall but also real live moving pictures of the pulpit. However, it was not to be. I eventually had to admit defeat. It was possible to send the signals from one side of the Cathedral to another, which showed proof of concept. However, it was not possible to get the signals to go through the thick walls.

This isn’t going to be as easy a problem to solve as I had hoped and I’ve done what I can. It will have to be over to others to come up with ideas now.

My plan failed miserably.

Now, who was it told me that we don’t celebrate glorious failure enough in church? I can’t remember, but it was someone who was talking about the same attitude to risk taking as Kimberly was describing when discussing the liturgy video that I posted earlier.

I’ve much sympathy with her view. Indeed, my original post made reference to Provincial Conferences, which have been one of the places where liturgical experimentation has been much to the fore sometimes. That element of risk taking has been so valuable too.

The great liturgical moments I can remember (seeds scattered during the parable of the sower, the triupudium, asperges with attitude, the gospel and magnificant at my installation) more than make up for the liturgical failures such as the soggy mess that resulted from a failure to get palm crosses to burn during an Ash Wednesday service.

A little risk. A lot of tradition.

On second thoughts, a little risk is part of our tradition.


  1. Kelvin we have an audio link through the Chuch wall to the Choir Vestry which is sometimes used by mums & toddlers during parts of the Sunday Service. We acheived this wirless link by using the Hearing Loop signal which penetrates the 4 foot thick wall. You need a Loop Receiver (carfully positioned and stuck to the wall) which feeds into an audio amplifier and speakers. Works very well and is much appreciated. I can send you more technical details if you wish.

  2. Another Kelvin says

    A squint or possibly a series of squints, perhaps double-glazed, might allow ‘undesirables’ to follow the service without coming into contact with the congregation.

  3. fr dougal says

    What (pardon my ignorance) is a triupudium when it’s at home?

  4. There are several places were there are gaps in the wall between the church and hall – namely the windows. A receiver on the hall side of a window cabled out to the hall should be able to pick up a signal from inside the church.

  5. fr dougal says

    Ah! That’s what that was! I’ve actually experienced it when worshipping at St Gregory’s on holiday in San Francisco!

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