Professional actors help seminarians with “Preaching Boot Camp”

From the Detroit Free Press: Let’s be honest, Catholic priests aren’t known for soul-stirring preaching. And according to Pope Francis and many ex-Catholics, that’s a problem. Boring sermonizing does not fill the sanctuary or pay the bills. It certainly will not curb the steady march of American Catholics from the faith. “Priests today have to [Read More...]

“The Preacher’s Mistake”

A Redemptorist reader, Fr. John McKenna, sent this along, and it’s too good not to share. It’s credited to William Croswell Doane, the first bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Albany, who served in that capacity from 1869 until his death in 1913. “The Preacher’s Mistake”  The parish priest Of austerity, Climbed up in a [Read More...]

Priests and deacons, if you think “preaching seems pointless”…think again.

  View image | My blog neighbor Fr. Dwight Longenecker bemoans the state of Catholic preaching—and the seeming lack of response to said preaching:  I sometimes feel like the dog who barks at the train. He doesn’t bark at the train because he thinks the train will stop. He barks because he’s a dog. [Read More...]

Pope: church is about unity, not forming lobbies

I can’t imagine what he’s talking about, can you? Details:  Pope Francis says discussions within the Church are to seek unity and and it should not be a place where people are always clashing, betraying each other and forming lobbies to win their argument. He said the Holy Spirit helps bring change and moves things [Read More...]

Pope to newly ordained priests: No more boring sermons

Details: On Sunday morning Pope Francis ordained 19 new priests, exhorting them to serve the flock rather than manage it, and to feed the people of God with heartfelt homilies rather than boring sermons. “Let this be the nourishment of the People of God,” Francis said during the ceremony in Saint Peter’s Basilica, “that your sermons are [Read More...]

Archbishop Cupich’s homily at wake for Cardinal George

  View image |   This was delivered Tuesday, for priests and seminarians gathered at the wake of Cardinal George. It’s beautiful. I think it may have particular resonance for clergy. It’s been published multiple places online. Here it is from Zenit:  “Stay with us Lord, for evening draws near.” These words echo in [Read More...]

“Stop the homily abuse”

A bishop in the Philippines used the Mass on Holy Thursday to talk about bad preaching—and he held nothing back. Details:  Below is the homily of Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas at the Cathedral of Lingayen-Dagupan, the St John the Evangelist Cathedral in Dagupan City, on Thursday, April 2. Today we make a spiritual journey again [Read More...]

Must-read: The preacher as “servant to dialogue”

Some rich and compelling ideas on preaching, from Fr. Michael Cummins over at Word on Fire:  For preaching to be effective, the preacher must be in dialogue with Christ and in dialogue with the community of the Church.  The preacher must know Christ and allow himself to be known by Christ fully.  The preacher must [Read More...]

Pope Francis talks to Rome’s priests about liturgy, preaching

From CNS:  The liturgy should help the faithful enter into God’s mystery and to experience the wonder of encountering Christ, Pope Francis told priests of the diocese of Rome. People should feel the wonder and allure “that the apostles felt when they were called, invited. It attracts — wonder attracts — and it lets you [Read More...]

Why Catholic preaching has gotten better

One priest lays out his argument, beginning with the new lectionary: The new lectionary has brought back the Old Testament to a more fitting position. The readings in the Missal of Saint John XXIII were pared down to a rare degree, and this had the unfortunate effect of impoverishing the preaching. Indeed the preaching sometimes [Read More...]