Trinity College

Proclaiming the Kingdom: Orthodox Homiletics and Liturgical Celebration

Course Code: 
Last Offered: 
Fall 2020
Next Offered: 
Fall 2023

This course presents both effective preaching and liturgical celebration as key aspects of the proclamation of the good news of the kingdom of God.

The course will ground students in the theology of sacramental preaching and help them to develop dynamic oral communication skills. Students will be given the opportunity to hone their sermon preparation and preaching skills in a supportive environment. Learning to read Biblical texts closely, exegete and interpret passages with the aim of proclaiming the gospel, and preach effectively and sacramentally to the listening liturgical assembly, students will deliver at least three homilies during the course and receive constructive feedback to improve their skills.

The course will also encompass a practice-oriented liturgics seminar that complements and reinforces the material taught in the three liturgical theology courses (Orthodox Eucharistic Liturgies and Liturgical Theology, Sanctification of Life: Orthodox Holy Mysteries, and Sanctification of Time: Orthodox Liturgy of the Hours and Liturgical Year). This seminar will treat the applied and practical side of liturgy, including rubrics and prescribed rituals and prayers for the sacraments and feasts of the church year, but with a focus through discussion and hands-on practice on making effective use of symbols, movement, communication, light, space, time, music, art and other liturgical elements in order to ensure Orthodox divine services fulfil their proper kerygmatic function.

In the practical development of excellent preaching and liturgical celebration skills, we will explore the course’s overarching theme that liturgy calls us, in the words of Aidan Kavanagh, “to do the world as the world was meant to be done” – that in the prophetic proclamation of God’s Word and beautiful celebration of liturgy we truly constitute and manifest the coming Kingdom, consecrating our life and the whole world to the glory of the Triune God.

This course would be suitable not only for those presiding, serving, singing, and preaching at liturgy, but also teachers, podcasters, writers, and all others seeking to communicate and proclaim the Word of God. During the course, students may opt to write and produce podcasts in place of sermons.