What not to do during a talk in sacrament meeting

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kentimus
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What not to do during a talk in sacrament meeting

Postby kentimus » Mon 29 Mar, 2010 11:39 pm

So, I was reading the post titled First Presidency Letter and it reminded me of something that happened in my ward/stake about a two years ago. Within the space of about 2 months three different speakers began their talks something like this:

"So, the bishop asked the best looking person in the ward to give a talk, and he turned him down. And then the bishop asked the most intelligent person in the ward to give a talk, and he turned him down. And then the bishop asked the most spiritual person in the ward to give a talk, and he turned him down. And then the bishop asked the best public speaker in the ward to give a talk, and he turned him down. And finally the bishop asked the most righteous person in the ward to give a talk. So I said 'Fine, I'll give a talk, since you asked me five times."

The story was worth a chuckle the first time, but when I heard it 3 times (once in stake conference and twice in sacrament meeting) in just a few months, I put it on my mental list of things never to do during a talk.

What other things should be left out of a sacrament meeting talk?

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AdamOndi
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Postby AdamOndi » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 07:20 am

I have a three strikes rule for talks. These were developed with the assistance of my friend while we were Deacons as a result of watching other youth give talks. Then we realized that the youth were not the only offenders by a long shot. Anyway, onto the three strikes:

Strike 1: "Today I was asked to speak on..." Please don't use this line. It makes people sound like they are trying to pad out the length of their talk. It would be akin to stretching a book report with repeated use of the word "very" in order to get it up to three full pages.

Strike 2: "For my talk, I found the following Ensign article..." followed by reading the article and then ending the talk. That wasn't your talk. That was someone else's talk, published in a Church magazine. If I want to read that talk, I will read it to myself, usually much better (and with fewer mispronunciations) than the person reading it for their talk.

Strike 3: Related to Strike 2, but uniquely distracting during a talk is having someone else write the talk for you (like your dad, your mom, or your spouse) and then reading it straight off the note pad, struggling with words that you don't recognize, and getting the cadence and pacing of the sentences all wrong because it's clearly something that you didn't think up.
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The Don
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Postby The Don » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 07:41 am

I second all those.

Another no-no is reading a dictionary definition of your topic.
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Postby robcan2 » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 08:52 am

Also saying, "Brother X called me last night at 9pm and asked me to speak."

Doing the Aloha thing if they're not Hawaiian, or in Hawaii. I suppose if they are giving their farewell or homecoming address and were called to Hawaii, then it's okay.

I hesitate to say don't cry during a talk, but when they do and sniff repeatedly into the microphone, that really grosses me out.

And if they do cry during their talk, they shouldn't apologize for being a "boob."

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ImAdhis
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Postby ImAdhis » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 11:02 am

The Don wrote:I second all those.

Another no-no is reading a dictionary definition of your topic.

What about the bible dictionary definition of a topic? I haven't done it, but I might.
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Momma Snider
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Postby Momma Snider » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 11:12 am

I don't object to someone stating what they are speaking about. Giving a talk in church is different from giving a public address. In church, I like to know from the beginning what the topic is, to help me follow whatever direction they take.

Not to say a church speaker shouldn't say something interesting at the beginning. Apropriate stories or even little jokes help, but they should fit what you're going to talk about. In a speech, they already pretty much know what your topic will be.

I'd be annoyed by hearing that five-man tale more than once, too. Maybe even the first time.

So, kentimus, are you new here?

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ImAdhis
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Postby ImAdhis » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 11:59 am

Momma Snider wrote: In church, I like to know from the beginning what the topic is, to help me follow whatever direction they take.

In military presentations, it is required to start by stating what the topic is and then ending by repeating the purpose of the presentation.
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Postby Lowdoggy Dogg » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 12:36 pm

I like it when people introduce their topic.

Sometimes it is the only way to know what their talk was supposed to be about.

-ZING!-

I also hate the aloha thing. Should I be able to drink because I am Irish? Or shake my hips because I am Cuban?

Never happens here in the East though.

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kentimus
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Postby kentimus » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 12:42 pm

Momma Snider wrote:So, kentimus, are you new here?


Yep, brand spankin new. I got tired of my friends teasing me about not knowing anything about the Snider Board.

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The Don
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Postby The Don » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 01:04 pm

Kentimus is an old friend who was delightfully intrigued by all the Sniderboard people on Facebook and while some tried to keep him away (Marjory and Karen, you know who you are) Lady Celtic and I graciously allowed him to join.
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Postby Eric's Fat Brother » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 01:14 pm

Ummm, technically, *I* allowed him to join.
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The Don
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Postby The Don » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 01:32 pm

Ah yes, that would be true.
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Momma Snider
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Postby Momma Snider » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 02:14 pm

Well, whoever allowed it, welcome! It is a shame how many people have to go through life not being a member of this Village.

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Lady Celtic
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Postby Lady Celtic » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 02:21 pm

Amen to that, Momma. It's been so much fun reading Nate and Kent's interaction on Facebook (and Auntie K's and steelem's) that I thought maybe Kent was a Villager and I was missing something. Turns out he was the one missing something. And now his life is complete!
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kentimus
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Postby kentimus » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 02:26 pm

Whoo hoo!

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Postby Card » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 02:45 pm

I wish I were your Facebook friend, but I don't know people's real names enough to find them, I guess.

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Postby SDR » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 06:11 pm

Card wrote:I wish I were your Facebook friend, but I don't know people's real names enough to find them, I guess.


I agree with this. So tell me your Facebook / real name and I'll add you. Or add me (Scott Dale Robison) and I'll accept. Probably. :)

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WiseNLucky
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Postby WiseNLucky » Tue 30 Mar, 2010 06:21 pm

Back on point: PLEASE do not run over time. If you are not the last speaker, you mess up all the speakers following you. If you ARE the last speaker, you mess up all the teachers in Sunday School. If you were assigned a 15 minute talk and there are only 10 minutes left in the regular meeting time, talk for only 5 (leaving 5 minutes for closing hymn and prayer).

I was once assigned to give a high council address in a ward that had had youth conference the week before. The bishop asked the youth who would like the opportunity to bear their testimonies. It was awesome! By the time they were done, there were only 10 minutes left of the normal meeting time. The bishop told me it was OK to go ahead and give my talk, but I just bore my testimony and sat down. Anything I would have said would have just taken the spirit away from that meeting. To my mind, that was one of the best talks I ever gave.
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Lady Celtic
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Postby Lady Celtic » Wed 31 Mar, 2010 08:31 am

AMEN TO THAT! I hate it when speakers go over. I'm so glad you chose that course of action, WiseGuy. I think AdamOndi has pointed out before that going over doesn't usually add to the Spirit, as the congregation is getting antsy to move on to the next class. Kids *know* when it's time to go to Primary, and they get noisy and restless when they're delayed. Well, my kids do, anyway.
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The Don
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Postby The Don » Wed 31 Mar, 2010 08:51 am

I used to get upset with that too but now it just means less time to teach which is fine with me. (I have a hard time finding enough material to keep the kids interested.)
I like traffic lights.


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