Thoughts For Sunday
Servant of the Divine Word
Verbi Divini Minister
Do you have a goal, what do you want to achieve with your speeches?
My goal is to bring the Good News to the people. Give them assistance in coping with everyday life. The word for Sunday does not start on Saturday morning, it starts on Monday. In my speeches I take on everyday circumstances, the events of the week. Current messages are important to me. I will not only target the homeless, I speak to the whole people.
Why watching TV?
I am used to speaking in full churches and the television is something of a full church. It is a wonderful medium to reach people. Since 1987, I have appeared on television and speak the word for Sunday. First on Swiss television for many years, then on TeleZüri and now on U1TV. At Swiss television, there were sometimes 80 kilograms of mail at peak times after a broadcast. The reactions ranged from enthusiasm for my words to enthusiasm for the pattern of my jumper.
When I express my thoughts on television, I enter into dialogue with the audience. In the narrower sense, it is the technicians who cooperate and in the further the audience. I feel that they are listening and this listening directs my words. Without them, there would be no thought for Sunday.
As with Brecht’s dramatic theory, without the audience the sermon is not complete. Without the viewer thinking of anything, the piece is not finished and ineffective.
Exactly. This goes through the technology. God is present in every mission and the power of his words flows through the technique to the audience.
But without thinking of something, all power is of no use.
Pastor Sieber, are you yourself when you are in front of the camera?
I’m the same both behind and behind the camera. For the homeless as well as for managers, for teenagers and the elderly home. I am Pastor Sieber.
My teacher and the pastor used to tell me to become an actor. But my mother said it was now war, I should go to a farmer’s work. So I became a servant. After the war, I took my school leaving exam and studied theology.
Why did you become a pastor?
People liked my advice. It was not too far off to become a pastor. I want to help my fellow human beings, but do not forget that Helpers and Helped are partners. You know the story of the Samaritan?
Help me on the jumps please.
An injured man lies by the wayside, several people, including priests, just walk by without helping the man. As one of the Samaritan tribe passes, he invites the injured man to his donkey and spends it in the next village.
The Samaritan has no reward in mind. He gets it neither in history, nor in heaven, he is rewarded for his good deeds. But by helping, he develops powers to operate in the social organism. In this sense, helpers and assistants are partners. The helper helps the helper to develop further.
That’s exactly how it is with the poor. They have the potential to animate the rich and powerful to rethink.
Thank you for the interview, Pastor Sieber