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Tips for Writing a Sermon


rev.dennis

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Below are some tips for creating a suitable sermon.

Make an Outline

Creating an outline for your sermon will make organizing your ideas much easier.

Here is a sample outline:

Introduction – introduce the topic you will be writing about

  • What is the angle you will be taking?
  • What should the reader expect?

Body paragraph(s) – go into detail on certain aspect(s) of your topic

  • Has this issue evolved over time?
  • How is it relevant to us today?
  • Consider providing current example(s) to explain what you mean

Conclusion – wrap up your ideas

  • What are the takeaways?
  • How should the issue be addressed going forward?

Stay On Topic

It can be easy to start rambling when writing, especially if it's something that you are passionate about. Try to contain your thoughts to a particular topic or issue. If this proves difficult, take short breaks to read what you've already written. Ask yourself: am I staying on topic throughout? Another great strategy is to have someone else read your writing – a fresh set of eyes can be helpful in pointing out things that you may have missed.

Use Common Sense

Select a topic you think others will find interesting (or may even disagree upon). We encourage our ministers to engage in friendly debate – after all, we learn the most from those who hold opinions that differ from our own. With that being said, don't let passion cloud your judgment. If you choose to present a controversial opinion, do so with civility. Any sermons which contain hate speech, single out individual groups for ridicule, or in any way violate the core principles of the ULC will not be considered for publication.

Suggested Topics

Here is a short (and non-exhaustive) list of topics which could make for interesting sermons:

  • Love
  • Dealing with Loss
  • Spirituality in the Modern Age
  • Your Experience as a Minister (and advice to others)
  • Income Inequality/Homelessness
  • Religious Extremism
  • What Makes a Hero?
  • LGBT Issues
  • Religion's Role in Education
  • Animal Rights

Proofread!

As anyone who has ever used the Internet can attest, nothing can derail a conversation quite like a typo! Spelling and grammatical errors can be distracting for readers. No doubt the message you are sharing is an important one, so do your best to make sure your piece is clear of errors before you submit it for consideration.

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