I had the pleasure of attending a religious ceremony recently where a mass was said as part of the celebration. The religious ceremony was held outdoors at a holy well honouring a Saint. About 100 people (pilgrims) attended to show their respect and support for the celebration, a celebration that takes place annually. Many people spoke and sang at the event, where there were two main speakers, the Chief Celebrant (The Priest) and another person who opened the event with a speech about the history of the area and why we were all gathered here in honour of this Saint. Here are some of my observations of where the latter speaker did well and where they could have improved in their speaking delivery. Where the speaker did well: Everything was covered in this speech. The speaker stood in full view of the congregation and looked very professional. They were addressed very appropriately and actually stood out from everyone else. They had brought along their own outdoor sound system which they invested in themselves due to previous experiences speaking outdoors. And it was lucky as the system that was supposed to be used failed that morning during testing. They had their notes very well prepared, in fact they read them out, which was perfectly fine and accepted. They paused with great effect as they mentioned people and key history information. They stood upright and spoke with eloquence and authority with the microphone held where it should be held. Where the speaker could improve: There were a few areas where I felt the speaker could have improved. A podium would have been helpful to them. They had no where to leave their notes. They had about 7-9 pages of script to read out and as they turned to the next page, they had to juggle the microphone and the pages, hoping that nothing would fall or indeed blow away. They could have made more eye contact with the congregation and some of the congregation could not see them speak as some were behind them. They could have positioned themselves where everyone could see them. The sound system had some interference, but I guess this can be normal when speaking outdoors. At times during their speech, they spoke quickly and I think some of the congregation may have missed the message or what had been said. What I liked about the event: Overall, the event was fantastic, a few drops of rain fell, but we expect this in Ireland. It was held up an old country road on a slight mound, where the Saint is supposed to have stopped, prayed and rested. Old Ireland was so much in evidence and the local people have maintained the place with care and attention throughout the years. People who attended the event were very prayerful people, who respected this Saint. Young and old contributed and the Priest made the occasion spiritual and meaningful for everyone. When the ceremony was over, everyone were offered the pleasures of fresh tea and homemade produce made by the locals. People are great really…!