Monday, December 14, 2009

Homily Suprise

Ok, so I want to share one other thing about homilies. Before I got ordained, I was scandalized at the poor quality of some of the homilies I heard. 15 or minutes long -- I don't care if it is Sunday, Danny, that's way too long. 3-5 separate points -- dude, you freaking lost me at hello. And above all, boring boring boring. Dead inside. I would get more out of listening to Charlie Brown's teacher. In fact, maybe that guy was Charlie Brown's teacher.

(Do we even need to mention the homilies that are trying to pick fights, lecture or command?)


"It can't hurt you if you don't listen to it."

So here's the twist of the knife. I've been preaching for about 7 years now, and you know, one thing I've discovered is that it's really NOT that easy. I swear to you, there are weeks that I work my tail off on a homily and it is an embarrassment. I spend the eucharistic prayer swimming through waves of shame, and I have to force myself at communion not to look into each parishioner's eyes for a glimmer of affirmation.

Other weeks, I stand up without an ending -- really, no clue how the thing should end. Heart pounding, clammy skin. And it all comes together out of freaking nowhere.

The Jesuit Bob Purcell used to do this thing called a one-minute retreat.
It went like this: Who's big?
Then we'd point up at the sky.
Who's small?
We'd point at ourselves.
Who's strong? Sky.
Who's weak? Yo.
Who's smart? Sky.
Who's not? Here I am.

And that's basically the experience of preaching, in a nutshell. It's wondrous. Also pretty darn humbling.

2 comments:

Michelle said...

I very much enjoyed these tours of the homily from the other side of the altar rail. The image of the "spiritual off ramp" is a powerful one -- if I walk off with one thing to contemplate from a homily, all was well with the homily. Sometimes the most fruitful sermons have been objectively awful -- but forced me thereby to think why it fell so flat. They create a space in which the Spirit can work...

And now that I write a weekly reflection on the scriptures for my archdiocese - I have a deeper appreciation for the time and discipline it takes to prepare prayerfully and seriously to preach the Word. Two years in I was just beginning to wonder how many "homilies" I have in me -- I'm glad to know I'm not alone! (As long as there are five or six good ones.)

Thanks!

Zheng junxai5 said...

2015-07-14 zhengjx
michael kors handbags
air jordan uk
burberry scarf
fitflops
coach factory outlet
prada outlet store
michael kors outlet online
oakley outlet store
kate spade
michael kors uk outlet
coach outlet store online
toms shoes sale
ray ban sunglasses
true religion
chanel bags
pandora jewelry outlet
sac louis vuitton
michael kors purse
toms outlet store
longchamp outlet online
coach outlet online
true religion jeans outlet
oakley sunglasses outlet
pandora bracelets
michael kors
nike pas cher
football jerseys
ray ban sunglasses uk
ralph lauren sale
pandora charms
soccer shoes for sale
polo ralph lauren uk
louis vuitton sito ufficiale
ralph lauren femme
coach outlet
cheap ray bans
ray ban glasses
true religion jeans
mont blanc
beats by dre