Gladys South – A Great Dancer

The Regent dance palace in Brighton witnessed many lives taking a new turn. For the young Gladys, towards the end of WW2, this was where she met Ted South, a handsome man in the RAF.

Gladys was one of 13 children. At 14 she went to work in a laundry. She and Ted were married in 1947 and they moved to Roehampton. Ann, their daughter, was born soon after and the family moved back to Brighton. They returned to London in 1956 and then moved to Kent in 1968. After Ted died in 1981, Gladys moved to Isleworth, to be near Ann.

She got involved at St John’s, meeting many people. She was a member of the ‘Tuesday Club’. She also rediscovered her dancing passion. Until she was 83 (in 2004) she attended 3 sequences dances a week. She danced ‘with feeling and lightness of step.’ Aged 91, Gladys died on 10th Aug.

At her funeral on Tuesday, we sang the Lord of the Dance, an ideal choice. The hymn explores the “divine dance,” a beautiful way to see God. The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are dancing together, which they have been doing since eternity past, it goes on now, and will go on forever.

So strong is their union that the dance continued while Jesus lived on planet earth – until the ‘Friday when the sky turned black’. BUT: the dance began again when ‘He leapt up high’ on Easter morning. Since then, the floor is open for ALL humans to join in their dance. If we start now, we will participate in the eternal dance of heaven.

Worship is about letting our whole beings move in time with the music of heaven, taking our lead from Jesus Christ. We do so with other people who are trying to do the same thing and we long to draw in all those standing on the edge of the dance floor.