Laity Preaching Cohort

March 9, 2021

A Preaching Cohort facilitated by Robert W. Brewer, Th.D. Robert is an assistant professor of religion and campus chaplain at Greensboro College and is the Director of Community Outreach & Worship Arts at College Place UMC. 

This course provides laity who already have experience in developing and delivering sermons additional insights into the art and practice of preaching. Participants will learn from the experience and feedback of other laity while being guided by an experienced instructor. The course will meet virtually once per month for six consecutive months. Participants will read The Four Pages of the Sermon, by Paul Scott Wilson (available at Cokesbury) along with other articles and sermons. The extended period between course meetings provides participants the time needed to complete and reflect upon the readings and to prepare sermons for presentation to the cohort. 

Registration is limited to twelve participants to allow sufficient opportunity for discussion and sermon delivery.  The cost is $25.00, and participants are responsible for purchasing their own copy of the required book. For questions about the cohort, please contact Kim Ingram.  Questions about registration may be directed to Marsha Patton.

Advanced Lay Servant Ministry Training Course Credit
This course has been approved by the WNCC Board of Laity as a renewal credit option for current Certified Lay Servants, Certified Lay Speakers, and Certified Lay Ministers who have already completed at least one of the two approved Advanced Lay Servant Courses related to preaching ("Called to Preach" or "From Your Heart to Theirs: Delivering an Effective Sermon") or who have completed the Preaching Module in the Certified Lay Ministers education track. This course does not take the place of the Advance Courses related to preaching that are required by the tracks of study for initial recognition as a Certified Lay Speaker or Certified Lay Minister. Questions related to the applicability of this course to the Lay Servant Ministry program may be directed to John Crane.
Each session will be from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm on a Tuesday on Zoom
Gathering 1: April 20 Introductions, Purpose of Preaching, Context, and Situations
  • Defining and Exploring the congregation's influence upon the sermon.
  • Exploring preaching as faith development
  • The joys of preaching online and in person.
Gathering 2: May 18 Exploring Creative Exegetical Strategies
  • Playing with the Biblical Text, Exegetical Work, and Sermon Unity
  • Reading: The Four Pages of the Sermon. Chapters 1-3
Gathering 3: June 22. Preaching Judgment
  • How to Begin and Sermon and Preaching Upon Judgment, Problems, and Sin
  • Words Matter so pick the best ones and Don’t ask questions
  • Reading: The Four Pages of the Sermon. Chapters 4-7
Gathering 4: July 20 Preaching Grace
  • Preaching Upon God’s actions and How to End a Sermon
  • Celebrating the Gospel and God-talk
  • Reading: The Four Pages of the Sermon Chapters 8-11
  • Watch participant’s sermons online and Reflect upon them in the Group
Gathering 5: August 24 Models of Preaching
  • Preaching Narratively the Entire Way Through
  • Internalizing the Sermon
  • Reading: The Four Pages of the Sermon Chapter 12
  • Watch participant’s sermons online and Reflect upon them in the Group
Gathering 6: September 21 Preaching Prophetically and on Occasions
  • What to do when you are a guest
  • Watch participant’s sermons online and Reflect upon them in the Group
Other Book for Consultation:
  • Questions Preachers Ask, Edited by Johnston, Smith, and Tisdale
  • What Not to Say, John Holbert and Alyce McKenzie
  • The Homiletical Beat, Eugene Lowry
  • Always a Guest, Barbara Brown Taylor

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