Why Liturgical Preaching
We believe in lectionary preaching. While there is merit to free-texting and we do not hold up the lectionary as a rule which all must obey, we have found the three-year and one-year lectionaries of the Church to be valuable aids to the preacher for the following reasons:
- Lectionary preaching keeps me as the preacher from having too much influence. If I am choosing the texts upon which the sermons are based, I will have nearly complete control of the proclaimed word in my congregation. That is a great deal of decision making vested in one fallible human being.
- By preaching the lectionary I am forced to confront difficult texts. This is especially true if I discipline myself to preach one reading for a period of the liturgical cycle, e.g., Epistles in Lent or Old Testament in the Sundays after Pentecost.
- Lectionary preaching enables me to live one step closer to the unity to which we are all called. Lectionary preaching means my preaching is in step with a much larger church than just the parish in which I am standing that day. People all over the world are listening to these words with me on this day.
- Lectionary preaching exposes the preacher and congregants to a much wider scriptural message. Every preacher has his favorites and will return to those time and again. The discipline of reading and preaching on the lectionary expands my own horizons as a preacher.