Magazine article Pastoral Music

The Deacon's Ministry of the Word

Magazine article Pastoral Music

The Deacon's Ministry of the Word

Article excerpt

The Deacon's Ministry of the Word Jay Cormier. Liturgical Press, 2016. ISBN: 978-0-8146-4822-3. 114 pages, paperback. $16.95.

Liturgical Press publishes the "Deacon's Ministry Series," books addressing the threefold ministry of the deacon: liturgy, Word, and charity. Author Jay Cormier has done a fine job with this short book about the deacon's homiletic ministry of preaching the Word of God.

However, this book is not just for deacons. In the preface, the author himself admits to some reluctance in writing a book about preaching geared especially to deacons, since he admits no substantive difference between a homily preached by a priest, deacon, or even a lay person. But since homilies vary according to the backgrounds, education, and experiences of the preacher, a deacon brings his own unique perspective.

I found the book delightful. Although it is certainly not a comprehensive textbook about preaching, Dr. Cormier discusses the skills necessary for a preacher in a very conversational manner. Throughout the book, actual examples of homilies (many having been preached by himself) illustrate his points. These are quite thought provoking and actually provide opportunities for personal spiritual reflection.

The book contains eight chapters or "essays." The author states: "While there is a certain logic to the order in which they appear in the book, the essays do not have to be read in sequence.... Each chapter/essay has been written to stand alone; to that end, some ideas are repeated from chapter to chapter for context and continuity. …

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