WHAT ARE HOMILY PEARLS?
Homily Pearls are Reflections on the Sunday readings that follow a clear and logical format that will aid priests and deacons with homily preparation, content and delivery. In each Reflection you will find:
The “Pearl” - A salient, memorable overview of the readings in three words or less that relates to everyday life, gleaned from my diligent practice of Lectio Divina.
An opening Reflection; a story, image, metaphor or contemporary parable that peaks audience attention, creates connectivity between preacher and assembly and smoothly segues to commentary on the scripture readings.
Commentary that respects timeless truths of the Catholic faith in the context of the Liturgical celebration.
Suggestions on why the salient points of the message are important and how the gathered assembly can adopt these.
Closing Comments that recapitulate the core of the message and offer action responses.
Not a canned homily that should be read word for word but a companion that will streamline, sharpen focus, and expedite preparation in constructing a homily for the assembly the preacher knows so well.
Why a Pearl?
An extensive six-year study conducted by Bishop Untener (Preaching Better, Practical suggestions for Homilists) revealed that one of the most frequent and common complaints from people critiquing hundreds of homilies was, "Too many thoughts/failure to stay with one thought." The "Pearl," a core thought with depth, corrects that problem. That the Pearl is one thought does not limit but, in fact, enhances the focus of the message.
Why Homily Pearls Were Created.
Homily Pearls meld my many years as a preacher, teacher and writer of homilies to assist and support homilists who have the awesome privilege of proclaiming the mystery of faith in a relevant and Spirit-anointed way to God's people. This ministry is fueled by the passion of knowing that what we as preachers do is transformative - not only for those hearing the word but for those preparing, proclaiming and delivering that word.
The Commendation from Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz, is excerpted. For full text of what our colleagues are saying about Homily Pearls see the Commendations Page.