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Neale Bacon
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Inner circle
Burnaby BC Canada
1775 Posts

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Here's the scenario...

My denomination is having a men's retreat in September and I am on the planning committee. It is being organized by my home church.

I was asked to do a 10 minute (no more) ice breaker for the first evening, but the guy in charge asked me specifically, "You're not going to do any magic or anything are you?" I said "Not if you don't want me to."

He informs me today that he has hired someone for the Saturday who is a local gospel magician to do 45 minutes on Saturday. He said he hoped I didn't have a problem with that.

I said I did as he specifically asked ME not to do magic and then hires someone else. He said "Well, all I have seen you do at the church is stuff for the kids"

I have been doing this for 25 years professionally for all types of groups including adults in recovery centers. I was very hurt by the fact my own church (or at least this individual) didn't think enough of my work to even ask me if I could do it, and yet I have done dozens of church events where they have asked me specifically to do "stuff for the kids".

Am I being petty? Smile
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
Burnaby BC
Canada's Favourite Family Ventriloquist
www.baconandfriends.com
BroDavid
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America’s North Coast, Ohio
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That is a tough thing to take.

Obviously this guy had an ulterior motive or something else cooking, if he asked you NOT to do magic, giving no explanation, but had the intent to have another person do the magic.

It almost sounds like he didn't want you to know that was his intent. To me, based on my understanding of the situation, it seems that he was deliberately being deceptive.

Is this person friend or relative of the guy? It just smells wrong for him not to tell you up front why he didn't want you to do magic.

Or, on the other hand, he may simply not have know that you do magic for audiences other than kids. But even then, I would think he could have put the issue out front. So I guess, that even in this case, I would think it doesn't smell quite right.

Have you had other dealing with this individual which have been a problem, or does he see you as a competitor in any way. Ambition is the brother of envy and either one can make a man do really questionable things. And this sounds questionable.

I would go to him and ask why he didn't tell you that he was going to hire another magi, when he told you not to do magic. It seems like he didn't to explain and therefore give you the chance to present your credentials.

And another option reflects something Jesus said about himself which I have seen proven time and time again, (Paraphrase coming....) A prophet gets no respect in his home town. As an evangelist, I have spoken around the country at a variety of churches in many denominations, but have NEVER been asked to speak at my home church.... Why Not? I have gotten a variety of responses over the years, but it comes down to this; the leaders remember when I was baby Christian, and so do others in the Church, so they don't think it would have the same impact as somone who they don't know personally. Oh Well, if that is the case with you, that they feel they know you too well, there isn't much you can do.

I pray that you receive wisdom and peace in sorting this issue out.

God Bless

BroDavid
If you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything.
Darkwing
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Nashville Tn
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Neale,

If I had been in the same situation, I too would have been hurt -- after all, we are human. I think I would request another meeting with the person organizing the event and clearly but gently state my position. Something like you did in this thread.

I have a similar problem at my church. I am probably suffering from overexposure and might be typecast as just a children's performer. Clarity of this issue may help.

Another question; is there a guest speaker coming in that's maybe doing the same fuctions that your pastor could be doing? If this is like a revival or a spritual retreat, it is not uncommon for guest speakers to come in.

Keep in mind, Jesus said a prophet has no honor in his hometown. You may be running into this situation at your church.

My dear brother, God knows your hurt and He knows how to take care of your disappointment in this situation. I pray your situation will be straightened out and His good will will prevail for your retreat.

I hope this helps.

David W.
knightmagic98
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Frisco, TX
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I can understand being hurt by this situation. However, by all accounts, according to your website and what this man has seen you do, you are a children's entertainer. I don't know about you, but I would not want a person (no matter how talented they may be) whose primary occupation is to entertain children specifically, to be the main event at my men's retreat. This problem seems to be more in your marketing.

Does the coordinator of the event know that you have a program that would suit the needs of this particular audience? I am not saying that your act would not have been great for this particular event. The question is, did the person in charge of entertainment know that?

It also comes down to the fact that they have a right to hire whoever they want for the event. This might give you an "in" for the next time, though.
GlenD
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LosAngeles, Ca
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If it were me, I would just take it on the chin on this one, hold my peace and try and enjoy the show of the guy they hired. But afterwards I would try and make it clear to a few people, that would matter, that I am not a kid's only type of performer and would very much appreciate being considered for future events, whether kid oriented or adult audiences.

I don't know what you're going to do for an ice breaker, if you're not going to do any magic. Hopefully you do!! I will say this, that if it were me and I was told what you have been told, I might decline to be a part of it in any way other than as an audience member.

But I don't think you're being petty, I think it is an honest reaction to a situation. Good luck in getting it sorted out.

Just my opinion and keep in mind, I don't have 25 years experience like you do either.

GlenD
"A miracle is something that seems impossible but happens anyway" - Griffin

"Any future where you succeed, is one where you tell the truth." - Griffin (Griffin rocks!)
Al Kazam the Magic Man
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Wow, this type of situation really tries your Christian virtues. It's sometimes very bamboozling when things like this happens.

I've been sitting here for awhile trying to type up some sort of response or reaction, so to speak. I'm hesitant to criticize not knowing much of the situation. I do however feel led to share that from what you've mentioned that I think the organiser of the event is not really walking in prayer and taking all things into consideration, as well as taking the responsibility for having a united team to pull of the event.

To ask you not to do any magic and then hire someone else without even asking or mentioning it to you is why I shared my thoughts in the previous sentence. It seems like a lack of sensitivity on his part, and has the potential to alienate the team that is organising the event (which you are a part of).

Is he the only one who has the final say on things without even consulting with the others on the committee? If that is the case then I'm not sure you can do much except be humble and share your heart with him, in private.

Of course some of the others here have gotten the "A prophet is not without honor, except in his own house". Very true words which I'm sure come from real experiences. I'll be praying for you that the good Lord will reveal His will in all of this and that "All things will work together for good to them who love the Lord". I know you do (love the Lord), and please let us know the outcome. I'm very interested to hear.

Regards,
JoJo
Al Kazam --> Magic guy in Perth Australia
Neale Bacon
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Burnaby BC Canada
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To try and answer most of your input...

I did ask the person booking why did he ask another magician without even asking me, and he said all he had seen me do was kids.

My website has a section devoted to my ministry stuff, including performing for men in recovery centres and other adult settings, so I don't think he looked at my website.

The guy they hired is good, and I don't blame him or think HE had anything to do with this.

The guy who is in charge of this event likes to think of himself as a real "man's man" and I guess he was worried it would reflect badly on him if I did kid's stuff (even though he never asked what I could do).

I also don't think he likes me very much, or sees me as a little "unmanly" because of my work with magic, clowning and ventriloquism.

He also told me he did this on his own without consulting the rest of the committee so at the next committee meeting I am going to politely state my position, and even though it's a done deal, I would still like the chance to express my hurt and displeasure at having my ministry dismissed.

I guess I will learn to live with it, but it still hurts, and as much as I hate to admit it, there is a lot of truth to prophet in his hometown.

Thanks folks for the input! Smile
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
Burnaby BC
Canada's Favourite Family Ventriloquist
www.baconandfriends.com
HoudinFan
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Pride goeth before a fall.
Kevin Ridgeway
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First off, let me say I'm sorry you were put in this position and please hear me out.

Honestly...it may just be that some churches and any organization don't hire or use "consultants", or entertainers or speakers from within their own organization. There are lots of companies that hire consultants to do the same job that some of their own people could do. Plus, a person on the planning committee then being hired and paid while the others on the committe do it voluntarily may looked "odd".

Think about it this way. You go to a men's retreat, youth convention, couple's retreat, whatever and there are guest speakers. It is rare that they are the same speakers from your Sunday morning worship. that's just the way it is from what I have always seen.

Pastor Harry Thomas puts on the biggest Christian Music festival in the country. He is the director...he brings in speakers from around the world, he himself does not speak other than from a director's position.

I don't think any group should go to a campground, another city, etc. to see/hear the same thing they can get at home.

Most people at our church know what we do and excluding a citywide event that our church was a part of, we have never performed or ministered at our church. One other thought along with that....the people at the retreat will not be able to set aside what they know of you personally or magically while you perform for the very same people that you see every Sunday morning.

Hopefully somehow, some of this made sense.

Kevin
Living Illusions
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Al Kazam the Magic Man
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Living in Perth Western Australia
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Kevin said:

"One other thought along with that....the people at the retreat will not be able to set aside what they know of you personally or magically while you perform for the very same people that you see every Sunday morning."

This quote is really another way to paraphrase "A prophet is not without honor, except in his own country"

Although I agree with everything you said, I'm sure you would also agree that, at the very least, if this was indeed the churches intent, that they would at least make it a known policy to the organising comittee that they don't feel they should have speakers and performers from within their own members? At the very most it would gender unity amongst the members organising the event.

I think this may be one of the main reasons for Neale's feelings and discouragement that his own talents and burdens seemed to be just passed over, and at worst ignored and not even given a mention.

JoJo
Al Kazam --> Magic guy in Perth Australia
brianmayo
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I don't know anything of the situation, but is it possible he already was thinking on hiring this other guy before his conversation with you Neale? If so, that could be why he asked you what he did--to make sure you weren't going to put this other magician in an awkward spot.

Also, for what its worth, I think its VERY possible he simply did believe you were a kid's magician and they were looking for somebody to do adult things! I have experienced this at my church. I have yet to perform a large illusion show for them, so all they know of is the few kids shows I've done for the local schools and the Bible clubs. People make 'nice' and 'encouraging' comments like 'he's so great with kids', and unfortunately that can set a stereotype that's tough to overcome.

I'm sure opportunities will present themselves where you can help break that stereotype, if in fact I'm even on the right track. Regardless though, I can sympathize; it's a tough situation.
harris
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Harris Deutsch
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Pray about the situation.

Let us know how the event goes.

I was going to add the bit about a prophet in his own country.

This situation has happened within organizations that I have been associated with.

I have to watch out for my E.G.O.

If you have done work with the recovery community you probably recognize this as

Edging
God
Out

This nearly normal magician has a long way to go on his spiritual journey.

Keep growing and glowing.

In His Name

Harris Deutsch
Laughologist
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
drlaugh4u@gmail.com
music, magic and marvelous toys
http://magician.org/member/drlaugh4u
KingStardog
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Quite possibly, you were meant to pay attention at the retreat and performing would distract from your attention.

Maybe you are to learn skills or even one specific piece of information to handle problems you may have to deal with in the future.

To feel hurt...well the exact same thing has happened to me a couple times (not at church retreats).

Yes I was disappointed at first. Yes I was a little hurt too. I have learned that these types of things happen when you are too close to the potential audience (I mean that it's less likely to happen at a booking for an audience that doesn't know you personally). I know how you feel but making your point and getting the last word will only take away from your productivity.

The big point here is you choose the way you look at life and the way you let it affect you. Forget about it and move on. Be happy for the guy that's in and if the pond your fishing in is too small.....find a bigger pond.

Peace be yours,

Mike
...think not that all wisdom is in your school. You may have studied other paths,but, it is important to remember that no matter who you are or where you come from, there is always more to learn.
tropicalpenguin
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My best guess is that he wasn't sure if you had any material for an older set. Example, I'd do the 21 Card Trick for 4th graders, but the Color Monte for kids my age and older (16).

Hope it goes well for you.

PS. I think it's cool that they have a forum like this with all the other stuff on this site.
-The penguin has spoken Smile

-How could 52 pieces of cardboard ever bring so much joy?
Neale Bacon
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Burnaby BC Canada
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I hope we can cap this discussion off now with this...

The person involved has apologized for overlooking me, as it was a genuine lack of knowledge of what I do.

I have accepted that, and am going to the retreat anyway to hear what God has to say to me.

The sound you hear next is me moving on.....
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
Burnaby BC
Canada's Favourite Family Ventriloquist
www.baconandfriends.com
GlenD
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LosAngeles, Ca
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I take that as good news, Neale! I think that is great that he apologized and also that you're going.

I appreciate your posting and sharing this experience with us.

Take care and God bless !

GlenD
"A miracle is something that seems impossible but happens anyway" - Griffin

"Any future where you succeed, is one where you tell the truth." - Griffin (Griffin rocks!)
Al Kazam the Magic Man
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Living in Perth Western Australia
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Hey Neale,

Thanks for letting us know what happened.

All the best to you, as I'm sure the Lord will bless you for taking it on the chin and moving on....

JoJo

I got this scripture for you: 1st Peter 2:20. I hope it can be of some encouragement. Kind regards.
Al Kazam --> Magic guy in Perth Australia
rickmagic1
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MIddle Tennessee area
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Just as food for thought since it seemed that everything worked out: we sometimes tend, as human beings, to assume what someone meant, and blow things up in our own mind.

I think that might be some of what Jesus meant in Matthew 18 when he said to go to your brother and talk to them. He also gives direction on what to do if they won't receive it!

Just a thought..

Rick
Richard Green
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BroDavid
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America’s North Coast, Ohio
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Good News Neale.

It sounds like you have dealt properly with the situation and are now dealing well with the outcome.

For me, actually completely forgiving, and moving on is the hard part of a situation like this one. I applaud your spiritual maturity and willingness to stay involved and just listen to what God has to say next.

You can't get better advice than what God has to say to you!

Thanks for the update, and God Bless!

BroDavid
If you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything.
harris
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Harris Deutsch
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Amends and forgiveness is a beautiful thing.

As the Lord's Prayer mentions,

"Forgive us, as we forgive others."

In His Name.

Harris
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
drlaugh4u@gmail.com
music, magic and marvelous toys
http://magician.org/member/drlaugh4u
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