6 sermons I could do without

I have endless tolerance for boring sermons, weird sermons, silly sermons, scary sermons, tiresome sermons, corny sermons, uninspired sermons, irrelevant sermons, rambling sermons, goofy sermons, and sermons that make me wonder which will come first, the end of the homily or sweet, sweet death.

But I don’t complain! Most of the time. I do, however, have a short list of things I could do without, which I offer out of sheer, self-giving generosity, as your respectful daughter in the Faith.

Read the rest of my latest at The Catholic Weekly.

Image: By BPL (originally posted to Flickr as Preaching) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

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3 thoughts on “6 sermons I could do without”

  1. Well done, Simcha!

    I especially hear you on the item about politics. For 26+ years, our pastor indoctrinated us weekly about how we should view the world, by giving us his own view. He was a very good man who loved his parishioners, and we him. Unfortunately, he very easily went off on a tangent, inserting politics into his homilies, to the point where that was all we heard. When Father retired, an administrator priest was appointed by the Diocese to take care of us, until the bishop selected a permanent pastor. Father did the same, in very condescending terms.

    It was bloody awful. I know I was blessed to be able to attend Mass, but if we wanted politics, we have several TV channels to handle that. What I needed was the Word and an clear explanation of it so that I could live it in my life.

    My breaking point came one Saturday vigil Mass. The Gospel was on the loaves and fishes, which to my ignorant mind practically screams teaching about the Eucharist, or perhaps feeding our more unfortunate brethren bodily and spiritually. But no. Father thought it would be a good time to educate us about Universal Health Care, which was a hot issue at the time.

    I quietly got up, genuflected, and left the church. My husband, who was a reader that evening, was trapped in a side chair on the altar. When I left, he said Father stopped talking and stared at me angrily until I was gone. I do not remember this, because my blood was boiling and pounding in my ears. I didn’t do it out of pride. I just had enough. I am one of those people who can only attend Mass once per week because of my work schedule, and I look forward to it. The following day, which was Sunday, I went to Mass at our sister parish.

    God is good, and a few months later, our bishop sent an extraordinary priest to us to be our pastor. Never once in the 7 years he has been with us has he ever given us a clue about how he votes or feels about politics. We have been amply nourished with his clear, simple, thoughtful, interesting homilies, which are linked to the readings and how to live them in our own lives. He is not perfect, but he is an excellent pastor. I dread the day he leaves.

    Peace to you, Simcha, and all here – Susan, ofs

  2. Most priests I have known simply pause (without any meaningful glares!) if a baby is crying loudly, giving someone time to leave the sanctuary. One cheerful and gregarious Father, if the tyke was crying on and on, would tell the congregation, “Just think of it as the sound of the human soul crying out for God!” I think of that every time now, and remember my own neediness.

    We had a hard-working DRE who would harangue us about taking our children to mass (which we always have, every Sunday) and other spiritual parental duties (which we were already doing) during the “parents’ sessions” of sacramental prep. I had a friend who survived getting several children through that program by bringing a margarita disguised in a water bottle to every parent session–not really anything to be proud of, but I have a sneaking sympathy for her. Desperate times.

  3. The one time I saw #6 happen I was mortified and the child in question wasn’t even mine! (I don’t have kids.) I can only imagine how awful that poor mother felt.

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