Preaching, at its best, emerges from the life of the community and its members. When we put our stories into conversation with the Biblical story, something new is created. Without that connection, preaching, no matter how well crafted, loses its relevance. ReImagine: Preaching in the Present Tense, explores the connection between life and preaching using actual examples of homilies that owe their very existence to the events and questions that swirl through the church community in the days before Sunday.
A transgender re-naming. Residential schools for indigenous children. Same-sex marriage. A pilgrimage on the Camino de Santiago. At first glance, the stories may have little in common, and yet, when put into conversation with the ancient stories of our faith, their shared lot is to give birth to sacred meaning and an experience of the divine. To preach out of the stuff of our lives is to speak in what we may call the wisdom tradition, a way of speaking that relies on the conviction that God is present and active, here and now. We look for meaning in the unexpected encounter between an ancient story and the present life of the community. Then, we speak.