Have you ever been to a pentecostal/holiness church? You know, the ones where there’s singing and clapping and everyone plays an instrument, even if it’s just slapping their thigh to the beat of the music. This is a glorious moment to behold. A song starts. The choir and congregation sing. Everyone’s clapping and keeping time. Someone starts dancing a high-stepping dance with fanciful footwork. The clapping people start to move around the dancing person and clap more to encourage them. Others may join in and then the music starts getting faster and faster. The clapping and dancing adjusts to the tempo of the music. Some people are swaying their hands in the air. Some doing basic steps and others much more complicated syncopations. Some are shouting out things. Occasionally, a couple of people may lock arms and dance around in a circle. Sometimes a group of people will join hands and do their high-energy, high-stepping, fanciful footwork dance together. It’s amazing to behold. They look like they’re having such a good time.
Last night I went to an Irish bar, with my Irish co-worker. She does Irish dance. There was this great band playing Celtic rock music. When the music started people started to clap. One or two women started jumping up and down to the music. They were joined by others who were dancing while others clapped and did fanciful footwork. There were basic steps and the good ones added all of these creative syncopations. They’d dance in circles and pairs would lock arms and spin their jig around and around. Sometimes a group of people would join hand sand do their high-energy, high-stepping, fanciful footwork dance together. They start at one tempo and then get faster and faster. Everyone looked like they were having such a good time. They had consumed copious amounts of beer.
I used to go to a Pentecostal church a long time ago.
I like beer.
PS. I must learn to clap on the beat. Pentecostals clap on the and.
Shameless Plug Update: This post is kind of related to my latest on Unpacking Faith. Just in case you’re interested.