She wanted me to sing along but I started to panic

Everyone was dressed in yellow shirts, hurrying in the same direction. Someone pushed into me. I turned and a large woman with bright red lipstick and vacant eyes smiled beatifically at me. “Sorry,” I croaked. She lurched away when she saw my jester’s hat in Bradford Bulls colours.

I stood for a moment but was soon kettled along with the rest of the throng until we reached St Peter and St Paul. I could not avoid being funnelled through the porch and into the nave, where, as usual, I was amazed by the beauty of the building. But then a man in a fluorescent yellow jacket began strumming a guitar and the words of a song appeared on the wall of the church. The woman with red lips handed me a microphone and held my elbow. She nodded to me, smiled and waved a hand towards the words on the wall. She wanted me to sing along.

“Then I shall bow, in humble adoration / And then proclaim, my God, how great Thou art”

The entire host of daffodils raised their arms, their faces lifted in amazed wonder. As they trumpetted the words, I turned and turned but could not move, so many thronged around me. Those words, this congregation scared me, a fear that turned to panic. I screamed but none of them heard or understood.

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