As stated previously, the Club Meeting Roles page doesn’t cover all possible roles. One role that your club may have is Invocation. (No, I have no idea why it’s called Invocation, and not Invocation Speaker or something similar.) The member who performs this role will be in charge of sharing a short inspirational quote or thought of the day at the beginning of the meeting. In my club, the invocation is given right after the Sergeant of Arms leads us in the Pledge of Allegiance.

Here’s some further information about this role:

  • Unlike other roles, this doesn’t have a script. In my club, the Toastmaster will give an introduction, such as, “First, I’d like to introduce Jane Smith, who’ll deliver the invocation.” Jane Smith would then share the quote.
  • Keep it inspirational. You may be a somewhat pessimistic person, as I am, but pessimistic quotes shouldn’t be given as the Invocation.
  • Keep it appropriate for Toastmasters. Don’t use profanity or other language that is frowned upon. Don’t use overly technical or specific terms that will be confusing to your club members.
  • Keep it short. Think of the Invocation as an appetizer for the longer, prepared speeches of the night. Ideally, the Invocation speech is just a minute or two.
  • You can obtain quotes and stories from various sources. You can get Invocation material from quite a few places. Perhaps an event at work inspired you. Maybe a TV show, song, or book gave you an interesting quote to use. In addition, there are numerous sites on the Internet that are good quote repositories, such as Brainy Quote and Inspiring Quotes. Quote Investigator is another interesting site that shows the origination of quotes. Some quote sites let you sign up for a mailing list, so you can get a new quote delivered to you daily. This is a good technique for stockpiling quotes.
  • You can sign up this role at the last minute. This role doesn’t take a lot of preparation, especially if you use one of the aforementioned quote sites.
  • If your meeting is sparsely attended, someone can take on this role in addition to another role. Since the Invocation appears so early in the meeting, it won’t interfere with any other role. You could easily be, say, a Timer and deliver the Invocation.
  • If nobody is willing to take this role, that’s OK. While the best meetings tend to have all roles filled, this role is one of the more optional ones.

I encourage you to sign up for this role if your club offers it. It’s a fairly easy role to take, and can help kick off the meeting on the right track.

Question: Does your club offer the Invocation role, and if so, have you ever taken it?