Preaching as Performance

Thomas A. Robinson and Lanette D. Ruff

in Out of the Mouths of Babes

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780199790876
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199919192 | DOI:

Series: Religion in America

Preaching as Performance

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This chapter discusses the key activity of the girl evangelists – preaching. Various newspaper reports mention the skill of the girl as a speaker, the length of the sermon (often long), and the attention of the audience. The sermon topics are drawn from the stock sermons of revivalist preachers: sin and salvation, the Second Coming of Jesus, attacks on religious modernism and secularism, in particular, the theory of evolution. Girls also spoke against modern fashions and morals, though often they were too young to have experienced much of life themselves. Ands almost always, one sermon dealt with their life story and their call. This would have given them unique sermon material and set them apart from other revivalists – young or old. Sometimes the girls address faith healing too. The chapter also discusses the style of the girls’ preaching.

Keywords: sermons; sin and salvation; second coming of Jesus; modern fashions and morals; life story; evolution; faith healing

Chapter.  3930 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Religious Studies

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