View outline (PDF) Instructor(s): Rev. Dr. Jason Byassee
Every week and often more the preacher stands to address the congregation. What does the preacher say? How? On what sources do we draw—whether ancient or contemporary, sacred or secular, communal or personal? What’s the goal here? How do we tell if the preacher has done well and how we might improve?
Once in parish or other leadership positions, these questions are difficult to answer. The Sabbath seems to come back around every three days. There is little time or space for critical reflection. This course and seminary in general are gifts. They provide the critical space and time necessary to reflect on the task and practice and internal goods of preaching. Some academic courses are narrow: you dive deeply into a very specific set of tasks and materials. Homiletics is broader than that. Here you draw on all you have learned in your seminary education and set a trajectory for yourself—a learning agenda—for years to come. The goal is not just one’s own erudition. It is the church’s edification.