At first blush, that seems like a ridiculous statement. After all, isn’t clowning entertainment? At the very least, it ought to be entertaining. However, clown ministry needs to be more than that.
Please note that there is nothing wrong with providing pure entertainment at a church picnic, or some other function. But clown ministry should be more than that, in the same way that music ministry should be more than entertainment. Is music ministry just for fun, or does it lead worshippers to reflect on God’s goodness, the need for holiness, or draw us closer to Jesus? In the same vein, clown ministry has a deeper purpose than just entertainment.
Even with traditional clowning, the clown can have another purpose beyond just entertainment. The clown serves as a living mirror that his audience looks into, in order to allow them to see the foolishness in their own lives. Likewise, true clown ministry should reveal something deeper to the audience, such as walking out some Biblical principal (like the “patience” skit, or the real meaning of baptism in “Freckles and Donuts“), makes a Bible verse come alive, or acts out a Bible story so that the audience can “see” the story, and (important point) how to walk it out in their own lives. It is vital that we, as Christians (and especially as Christian Ministers) not only know the truth of God’s Word, but walk it out in our own lives — and invite our audiences to do the same.