I think I’ve missed some Anglican directive stating that all sermons should contain an obligatory reference to Harry Potter.
I’ve now sat through several sermons where, for example, the dragon in the book of Revelation has been totally unnecessarily compared to the one in Harry Potter and the Burning Cuplet or whatever it’s called, or the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus upon the cross is said to be “a bit like the sacrifice Harry Potter had to make when he gave up one of his sweets for Hermione in Harry Potter and the Acrobat of Emmerdale.” I find it as much of an affront as it would be to discover porn tucked into one of the pages of my hymn book.
On that subject (sermons, not porn), I preached in my own church yesterday evening for the first time (lay preaching is, in my opinion, to be much encouraged) – and I was more nervous than I’ve been about any improvisation or even one-man show. It’s worse than doing stand-up. The fact that an fairly emminent theologian was in the congregation didn’t help. Not to mention an actress who held on to me afterwards and told me that I had a long preaching career ahead of me but she wanted more of my eyes (criticism noted, my next sermon will be accompanied by eyes aplenty).
As I stepped down from the pulpit I was also overcome by a sense of unease that the whole congregation might be shifting around anxiously, whispering to each other “why didn’t he mention Harry Potter?”