Gospel According to Glee – 40 Days at McKinley High
Day 19 – Wednesday after 3rd Sunday of Lent
To Read: (Series 2 Episode 13)
[Having lost a Cheerleading competition Sue becomes depressed and joins Glee Club as therapy. Things are not going we so Will asks for a chat]
Sue: I understand you wish to see me.
Will: What are you doing tomorrow night? I want to take you somewhere.
Sue: Nuu, nuu, no way. I don’t care how depressed I am – I will not date a curly.
Will: (laughs) Not on a date, Sue.
Sue: Still probably not gonna go.
Will: You’re interested on making your comeback, right? Well, I think it’s important that you see something.
[Later at LIMA HOSPITAL]
Will: We’re going to the Paediatric cancer ward. Once a month, I come down here and I sing songs with some of the kids getting long-term care.
Sue: Yep. No. [Sue turns to leave. Will catches her coat and pulls her back.]
Sue: Uh, William, I know what you’re getting at. I have been selfish. Yes, I was ridiculed on the National stage, but you’re right. It’s nothing when you compare it to what many people have to deal with and come back from. I should be grateful. Well, congratulations. I’ve learned my lesson.
Will: Then let’s celebrate. Let’s sing with some kids! Look, you’re right. Sometimes Glee club is a little silly. But we push through the weird to get to the real stuff. I mean… music can get out a part of us that’s hard to open up to. But please… Go there with me… I think it’ll be good for you Sue. No outfits. No jazz hands. Just… music.
Sue: Fine. And William, I don’t care how adorable those kids are – if I hear one song from that classic rock outfit Journey… I will start pulling catheters.
[Sue and Will enter the ward. Will is holding a ukulele case.]
Will: Hey guys!
Nurse Haley: Oh my God. You’re Sue Sylvester. I just saw you on T.V.
Haley: Hey guys. This lady was interviewed on T.V. by Katie Couric.
Sue: Holy sweet baby Jesus…
Haley: What do you say guys… you ready to make some music? Let’s do this thing. (Holds up the ukulele case) I brought my special little guy with me. (after strumming the last few chords) All right, and that’s all there is to it. So, does everyone know their parts?
Sue: My kids are gonna mop the floor with your kids.
Will: Not a chance. All right! I’m gonna sing the first two, and, uh, then you guys come in and join me. Just like we practiced. All right?
Will Schuester, Sue Sylvester and kids sing – This Little Light of Mine
[As the song plays on, Sue seems to have become closer to the small girl in the pink robe, who is sitting on her lap. Will and Sue share a little moment. When Will strums the final chords and the song comes to an end, the small girl in pink kisses Sue’s cheek.]
Will: Give yourselves a hand! All right! Good job.
Sue: (smiling) I’ll never forgive you for this.
Will: (smiles back at Sue) Deal.
‘This Little Light of Mine’ sung by Will, Sue, and children
Original Artist: Harry Dixon Loes
From the Scriptures:
Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good;
10 love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honour.
11 Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord.
12 Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer.
13 Contribute to the needs of the saints;
extend hospitality to strangers. (Romans 12v9-13)
Only a few words today as the script and the song gives more than enough food for reflection…
Even Sue, who is perhaps the most complex and conflicted of all the characters in Glee, knows the ‘danger’ of completing Random Acts of Kindness and doing good especially when there is no hope of reward. It will transform your life.
This is not the first time she has been caught out and compelled to become a Good Samaritan (she lets her meanness mask slip often at Christmas) and she doesn’t like it at all.
Her fear of hospitals is wrapped up in her experiences with her big sister who has Downs Syndrome and rather than get involved in the messiness of being human she puts on armour plating, hiding behind a well-practised sneer.
Cynicism is her stock in trade and she abhors sentimentality.
It is all too easy, like Sue, to become goal orientated, sour the milk of human kindness, and expect everyone around us to ‘suck it up’. If we do not occasionally step outside of our own concerns, allow our guard to be dropped we will become twisted, bitter, and always feel that life has got it in for us.
If we can learn to stop and give to others without condition or expectation of reward we will find ourselves being enriched time and time again.
In all our planning for life, even in our planning for the life of faith, let us always try to make moments when we are led by the lives of others instead of always insisting on being captains of our own destiny.
Who knows, if we do this we may, as was C.S. Lewis (and Sue) find ourselves being ‘Surprised by Joy?’
When I am hungry, give me someone in need of food;
When I am thirsty, send me someone needing a drink;
When I am cold, send me someone to warm;
When I am grieved, offer me someone to console;
When my cross grows heavy, let me share another’s cross too;
When I am poor, lead me to someone in need;
When I have no time, give me someone I can help a little while;
When I am humiliated, let me have someone to praise;
When I am disheartened, send me someone to cheer;
When I need peoples’ understanding, give me someone who needs mine;
When I need to be looked after, send me someone to care for;
When I think only of myself, draw my thoughts to another.
(Written by a co-worker of Mother Teresa)
Make an internet search for lists of Random Acts of Kindness. Pick one with tasks that suit your circumstances and attempt to complete a task every time you find yourself drifting into cynicism.
Reprise: Today’s song was written in the 1920s by Harry Dixon Loes, a pastor/music teacher. He wrote the song for the children at his Sunday School. The song became very popular when it was used as an anthem for the 1960s Civil Rights Movement. There have been many versions of the song recorded but, for today, why not just watch the Glee version again?
Scripture quotations are copyright © New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Transcripts of Glee Episodes were made with thanks to gleetranscripts.tumblr.com
These Reflections, ‘ ‘Gospel According to Glee’ are copyright © Andrew Dotchin 2021 and may be reproduced without charge on condition that the source is acknowledged.