Uploaded by Ashley Lewis


Whitney Brown
Brown 1
Professor Lewis
Principles of Speech
21 September 2017
Apply the Concepts: Listening Ethically
Growing up as in a southern Baptist church came with great expectations for a Sunday experience
wherever I was. A summer spent in the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, MI revealed to me that
there was no place like home. Christianity is just an umbrella to a variety of individual creeds. When I
found myself in an all-white Catholic worship service one Sunday morning I sat confused and
satisfied. The message that was given was stiff and colorless. It seemed as if I was in the wrong
audience. The pastor did not cater to me as an African American teen who is trying out the college
experience for the first time thousands of miles away from home. He did not gear his message to fit
me into the audience.
Listening to the sermon, I felt a strong sense of unfamiliarity. The characteristics of a good speaker
are defined through becoming an audience-centered speaker. I felt that being within the close radius
of a college campus the pastor failed to take into account the dynamic and diversity of the audience.
Even when two young black students walked into the congregation, he did not adapt or maneuver
his speech. I then had to be aware of where I was and who I was around. I had to take into account
that someone’s spiritual needs are being taken care of which mean I had to act within a realm that
did not affect or interrupt their Sunday morning experience. I endured and sat still. Head straight
forward as if I was taking in what was being said. I did not shout at the slightest sign of familiar word
as I would have done at home. I agreed to disagree with the contextualized correlation with real life. I
charged the experience to culture and how everyone’s experience with in their religion in unique to
them. To compromise and respectfully agree to disagree is a technique I used in this situation. All in
all, the compromise left me with a unique experience that benefitted me in an unexpected manner.