Ask the Candidate – Round 2, How do you choose what to preach?

As a supply preacher, rather than a preacher filling the same pulpit week to week, this one is a little tricky to answer.  There’s the right now answer: I check with the person inviting me to fill in to see if they have a preference (Lectionary, transition from one series to the next, lectio continua…). More often than not, the answer is “do what you like,” which usually sends me to the lectionary.  Or they are looking for someone to cover a particular special day- whether a national or greeting card holiday or something like “celebrating the gifts of women” Sunday.

But when I think about the possibilities for a full time pastoral role with a weekly preaching gig, I want some structure.  There are certainly some sermon series that I’ve dreamed up over the past few years, but I would be reticent to tackle that kind of planning on top of getting acclimated to a new parish, new worship services, new ministry, and so on.    The lectionary is an easy place to start, given that there are plenty of worship aids for writing/selecting liturgical elements and music.  There is also the Narrative Lectionary, which sounds promising.  The best “jumping in” point for the NL is fall, so timing of call might shape the decision about going that direction.

I do know this – I would hope to provide teaching that draws broadly from the scriptures and helps to reveal the BIG story of redemption behind each of the stories we tell.




One thought on “Ask the Candidate – Round 2, How do you choose what to preach?

  1. I started out using RCL when I started. It was “working smarter not harder” as you say…resources are more abundant. I preached quite a bit from the OT via the lectionary as it so often gets neglected. That allowed me time to get to “get settled”. Summertime was a good time to do short sermon series.

    We did the NL this year and I think it was good. That big picture of the biblical story…and having all of Lent in John was wonderful…and John is not my favorite gospel.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog…appreciate your comments.

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