Text for dictation:

A person with a faith or religion can be referred to as a believer. However, in secular societies where few people participate in religious worship, it is more common to meet atheists and agnostics. Atheists take the view that there is no God. Agnostics simply do not know whether or not God exists. Some may have read many theological texts in search of proof one way or the other, though the majority of agnostics probably give little time to questions of religion. This does not necessarily mean that they have no moral guidelines.

People who have social consciences often prefer to describe themselves as humanists. They may well share many of the same concerns as Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists or Jews. These may relate to war and peace, sexual morality or many other aspects of human relationships.

In Britain, the two largest denominations are Protestant and Catholic. Both of these groups belong to the Christian church, though the Protestants separated from the Catholic church in the sixteenth century and no longer recognise the pope as their head. Among the Protestants are Anglicans who are members of the Church of England. As you move up through the ranks of the clergy, you may start as a curate, helping the vicar or rector in charge of a parish.

There are several types of priest. A successful vicar will move from being a Reverend to a Canon by which time the congregation - the people who attend church - will probably be fairly large. The main administrator of a very large church or cathedral is called the dean, though the priest in charge of the diocese - a large area such as the city of London or Birmingham - is the bishop. The bishop is assisted by an archdeacon. The highest ranking bishop - in charge of all the churches in a particular area - is the archbishop. The reigning king or queen is the head of the Church of England.

  1. Get an good English speaker to dictate the text giving you a second reading with pauses so that you can write it down.
  2. Afterwards you can look at the above text to check your spelling.
  3. Next, using a red pen, put a small vertical mark high up before each stressed syllable in the text.
  4. Now click here to check that you have marked the correct syllables as the stressed ones.
  5. Finally, read the text aloud, taking care to stress the "stressed syllables" and not to stress the "weak" syllables.