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Sermon Advice

By Fr. Mark Perkins

Here's some of Fr. Glenn's advice about sermon writing that has stuck with me since I first read it a few years ago:

Be careful to avoid looking for a payoff like morality or encouragement, or something that will make your sermon meaningful. Open up the text, tell its story, and trust the text to open you up. Tell the truth. Don't be lazy. Stay orthodox.

I preached my first sermon on the Third Sunday of Lent in 2016. I had entered postulancy in the APA the previous summer and was in my second semester of seminary at Trinity School for Ministry (mostly distance). I was (and remain) a full-time teacher, so I was used to speaking in front of people, and I knew how to write. But I didn't really know how to write and deliver a sermon. That's still a work in progress.

Fr. Glenn helped me through the process. His advice -- as well as that of Fr. Sean (who was at that time also a postulant, but with more experience than me) and my wife -- was instrumental in turning what was essentially an academic paper into a real sermon.

Fr. Glenn has since expanded the notes he gave me into a more fulsome account of sermon preparation, and I think it will help anyone write better, sharper sermons.


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