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The Academy of Preachers relaunches its festivals with a virtual gathering for the proclamation of God’s Word on November 14th from 8:30 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. CST. Our theme will be “The Stories of Jesus in Our Lives: Sharing the Good News for Today.”

Gathering in the Zoom environment from all over the country, young preachers will hear from Dr. Darrell Gwaltney, Dean of the College of Theology and Christian Ministry at Belmont University and new Executive Director of the Academy of Preaching, Rev. Joseph T. Howard (AoP ’12), and others. Our festivals highlight young preachers as they preach to peers while inspiring and learning from each other, so come prepared to preach!

We will also provide opportunities to grow and to learn from experienced preachers in the following PreachingCraft classes.

Making Jesus’ Stories Your Own: Preaching the Parables

Jesus’ use of parables in his teaching and preaching was a remarkably powerful practice. This class will explore three parables in detail to examine how the parable functions as a teaching and preaching tool. It will explore how specific cultural and social meanings give the parable unique context and impact and illustrate how to use similar techniques in your sermons today. The goal of this class is to demonstrate how to exegete parables and integrate their teachings into your sermons while providing examples for applying parable elements in your preaching.  

Rev. Sarah Garrett Krey, Associate Pastor, Salem Lutheran Church, Catonsville, MD. AoP ’13.

Becoming a Master Storyteller: Storytelling Practices that Work

Have you ever heard the story . . . ? This simple question often presents a great opportunity for relationship building, community identity, and fellowship. Storytelling is the core of preaching and acts as a key element in the communication with others. This class will explore the key elements of storytelling, define different goals for styles of stories, and create opportunities for experimenting with storytelling formats. The goal of this class will be to help equip the young preacher with important insights about the nature of storytelling in order to strengthen the use of storytelling in sermons.

Dr. Jon Roebuck, Executive Director, Curb Center for Faith-Based Leadership, Belmont University

Storytelling as Invitation: Finding Yourself in Jesus’ Story

The parables of Jesus invited listeners to locate themselves in Jesus’ story through His use of people and places familiar to listeners. The challenge of preaching the parables is to extend a similar invitation to listeners to a new way of thinking and living as citizens of the Kingdom of God. In doing so, the preacher also extends an invitation to the listeners to consider themselves a continuation of Jesus’ story. How this is homiletically accomplished through the preaching of parables will be the focus the goal of this class.

Dr. David Latimore, Pastor, Fifteenth Avenue Baptist Church; Belmont Fellow, Belmont University, Nashville, TN

Storytelling as Resistance: Jesus’ Stories and Social Justice

The parables of Jesus often took the familiar expectations of the listeners and turned those expectations upside down. In doing so, Jesus offered the listeners the opportunity to understand how different His kingdom was and is from the world of the listeners. How does one use the parables, either in their content or approach, to invite listeners to envision a different world? How might preaching the parables provided preachers with a way to articulate a world that resists the normative claims of power and privilege? How does the preacher resist the gravitational pull of the culture to offer the Kingdom of God as an alternative? Examining preaching that strives for these outcomes is the goal of this class.

Min. Michelle E. Shaw, M.Div., ThM., Belmont Fellow, Belmont University, Nashville, TN

Register HERE! Sponsorships and group registrations are available, too! Email aop@belmont.edu for information about sponsorships and group registration.

Please plan to join us for this exciting day of preaching! More program details and preaching instructions will be sent shortly after registration.

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