Saved by Improv

“a day with laughing … is a good day” by olaf teuerle/flickr

The Rev. Les Carpenter writes for Faith & Leadership, at Duke Divinity School:

Improv was a highly unlikely choice for me, not just because of my fear of being the center of attention. I am an Episcopalian: spontaneity is our natural enemy. We pride ourselves on burying our noses in the Book of Common Prayer — not for saying, off the cuff, “I just want to praise God for this” or “I just want to pray for that.”

What surprised me, when I began taking classes in improv, was that I had found not just a hobby but a powerful practice for my ministry and leadership.

There is only one universal doctrine in the improv community. It is often referred to as a rule, but it is more like a vow than a law. I would call it a rule of life, but more accurately it is a rule of play. The rule can be summed up as “yes, and.” I have never seen so much packed into two simple words.

Read the rest.

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