Make the Word Come Alive: Lessons from Laity
In this final volume of the Channels of Listening series, Mary Alice Mulligan and Ronald Allen turn to sermon listeners for advice on how to create ... Show synopsis In this final volume of the Channels of Listening series, Mary Alice Mulligan and Ronald Allen turn to sermon listeners for advice on how to create more engaging and meaningful sermons. Drawing on the first large-scale systematic study of how listeners themselves describe the experience of hearing sermons and how those reports can influence preaching, Mulligan and Allen identify twelve qualities or characteristics that listeners most commonly seek in sermons. They use the listeners' own words to impart not just points that preachers would benefit from keeping in mind but also a real sense of how and why these qualities are important to the listener. The study this book is based on revealed that the participants went to church eager to hear the sermon. They said they believe sermons impact their lives and have the power to help them build a closer relationship to God. In this book, they talk openly and candidly about what makes a sermon meaningful to them and what blocks the message and turns them away. Their testimonies are a plea to preachers to listen and to learn.