Craft

Finding Courage to Preach in "The Purple Zone" (A Guest Post)

Finding Courage to Preach in "The Purple Zone" (A Guest Post)

Here’s the truth many clergy have shared with me: they are afraid to preach about issues of public concern.  They know their sermons should in some way address things like racism, homophobia, climate change, sexism, economic issues, or hatred of foreigners, for example.  But fear holds them back, keeps them quiet, and muzzles their prophetic voice. How can you preach when you are afraid?

Bridging the Language Gap in Sermons: Four Ways to Ensure “Church Words” are Meaningful to Your Listeners

Bridging the Language Gap in Sermons: Four Ways to Ensure “Church Words” are Meaningful to Your Listeners

There is a risk of misunderstanding when we use certain “church words.” We say a word, intending one meaning, but our listeners hear or interpret something else. How do we ensure our listeners actually understand what we mean? Consider these four approaches to bridge the divide.

How Our Failure to Preach on the "M" Word Damages More than Parish Budgets

How Our Failure to Preach on the "M" Word Damages More than Parish Budgets

The “M” word consistently makes preachers squirm, perhaps because it’s so wrapped up in our livelihood and the sustainability of the church. But money impacts so much more than our salaries and budgets. It’s a critical influence in nearly every aspect of a parishioner’s life. So our silence on matters of finance may be hurting the very ones we wish not to discomfort.

9 Ways to Ensure Your Last Sermon of the Weekend is as Strong as Your First

9 Ways to Ensure Your Last Sermon of the Weekend is as Strong as Your First

When you preach the same sermon across multiple services, there can be a drop in energy, enthusiasm, or presence as the morning wears on. How do you maintain focus and attention so that each event receives the fullness of your abilities?

Eight Tips to Preach Across the Divide

Eight Tips to Preach Across the Divide

If your experience is like mine, you’ve never preached in a political and cultural climate as volatile and unpredictable as the one we face in the U.S. right now. How do we preach the unifying love of Christ when many are divided? How do we preach peace in the face of vitriol? How do we preach dignity when displays of disrespect are paraded as badges of honor?