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Poll
Question: see above
< 5 min - 7 (8.9%)
5-15 min - 44 (55.7%)
15-25 min - 18 (22.8%)
25-40 min - 5 (6.3%)
> 40 min - 5 (6.3%)
Total Voters: 69

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Author Topic: How long is your sermon?  (Read 2973 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: March 31, 2013, 11:33:08 AM »

Multiple answers allowed  as if you attend several Churches on regular basis.
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« Reply #1 on: March 31, 2013, 11:38:58 AM »

Finnish sermons tend to be so short that I've never had a need to glance my watch. I'd estimate they are something like 10-15 minutes.

I like it that way. I tend to forget most of the points if the sermon is longer than that.
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« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2013, 12:59:00 PM »

Greek kerygma tradition is generally 'short and to the point'. Like these.
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« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2013, 01:16:55 PM »

Ours normally run 5-10 minutes at most. Every once in a while, the priest will skip them altogether, and go straight to this week's announcements, then hand out the antidoron.
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« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2013, 02:45:56 PM »

Usually 5-15 minutes on average, sometimes on special days though it could be as long as 30-35 minutes. Those Baptist though, wow, they don't even break a sweat until they at least reach the 1 hour mark.
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« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2013, 02:48:11 PM »

My priest never said anything in 12 minutes that could be stretched to 20...
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« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2013, 02:53:53 PM »

Greek kerygma tradition is generally 'short and to the point'. Like these.

Another reason to love the Greek traditions. How can one possibly have a 40-minute homily every week?
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« Reply #7 on: March 31, 2013, 04:27:50 PM »

Greek kerygma tradition is generally 'short and to the point'. Like these.

Another reason to love the Greek traditions. How can one possibly have a 40-minute homily every week?

I thought Joseph's three-hour service in Wuthering Heights was a bit of literary hyperbole... until I had to plod through Jonathan Edwards' stuff. Cry
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« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2013, 04:53:41 PM »

I said 5-15 and 15-25, just because I regularly attend two different parishes, and one of them has two priests that regularly homilize (they take turns), and so depending on the day's celebration or who's giving the homily it can vary quite a bit.

EDIT: Though, it's very, very rarely more than 20. 10-15 is probably more like it.
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« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2013, 06:26:24 PM »

Thank God my sermon is zero minutes long. OTH, our priests' sermons are usually 20 minutes long on the average. I also like when the homily is given: right after the Gospel reading.
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« Reply #10 on: March 31, 2013, 06:49:07 PM »

What's the prevailing tradition in Poland Mike?

I know in Serbia many people go after their regular church service & go to the monastery to hear talks from the various fathers in the monasteries
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« Reply #11 on: March 31, 2013, 07:11:00 PM »

Thank God my sermon is zero minutes long. OTH, our priests' sermons are usually 20 minutes long on the average. I also like when the homily is given: right after the Gospel reading.

Thank God. This is the proper place of the homily. It is unfortunate that it is given at the end of the Liturgy in so many parishes.

My parish records the homily on video every Sunday. While you should absolutely be there before the lessons, if you happen to miss it, you can always catch it online the next day!

Though, seriously folks, the Liturgy starts at "Blessed is the Kingdom...". The priest that baptized me was lenient, however (taking into account, I'm sure, that his parish has a lot of young families with little children), saying that it is acceptable to come in a bit late, as long as you make it for the Scripture readings. Though, he often said publicly he didn't believe people should normally commune if they came later than the Gospel.
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« Reply #12 on: March 31, 2013, 07:40:35 PM »

I also like when the homily is given: right after the Gospel reading.

That's the Finnish practice too at least in every single parish and monastery that I know.
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« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2013, 11:25:27 PM »

How long is my sermon?  I just got done.   Lips Sealed   Can you imagine St. Paul visiting one of our parishes (besides quietly in an icon on the iconostas)?  If we had a miraculous talking St. Paul icon who preached a continual sermon with beautiful inspiring words, most of my parishioners would marvel for about a half hour and then post it on Craigslist to trade another parish for a silent weeping one. 

Usually mine runs about 15-20 minutes.  My wife gently let me know that the homily ran 30 minutes today (a slight reprimand) but then added that fortunately it was good (lol).  Many don't know this but that is why throughout Church history married clergy were standard for parishes.  The Presbytera was the only one that the laity could count on to shut the priest up when the wind started to get a bit long.   police 

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« Reply #14 on: April 01, 2013, 04:28:07 AM »

What's the prevailing tradition in Poland Mike?

I can't really tell. The one parish I attend has < 5 min sermons, the second one - over 25 min. I know the official guidelines are +/- 15 min but I do not know how is it observed.
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« Reply #15 on: April 01, 2013, 04:51:46 AM »

Not long enough and too long, depends on who is preaching and the mood of the priest.  police

Usually around 25-40, maybe more..

I think I must find myself another church, there is too much dark-mindness in the current parish , even among priests, or it might be just me.. Anyway I recently feel no pleasure or satisfaction in going to church.. Too much negativity, judgementalism and dark-mindness. Is like every Sunday is a funeral. What is the deal with that.  Cry
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« Reply #16 on: April 01, 2013, 10:55:10 AM »

I've voted 5-15 min (more precisely, it lasts 10-15 min) and I think that's the best length of the sermon. Of course, on the parish feast, it lasts longer, but I consider it as something obvious.

But during the Communion of the priests, our parson (rector) has another speech: he always greet us, inform about current events in the parish and gives the schedule of the services, but sometimes he also say something about today's feast, Gospel, fasting period etc. so from time to time it turn to the second sermon (and he loves talking). But it's not so bad, because he's quite charismatic person, so it's nice to listen to it. It's easy for him to give a great description of the coming feast (e. g. the way how he described the Lazarus Saturday last day), that you're able to "feel" this feast, this atmosphere, the events that are commemorated by the particular feast.


What's the prevailing tradition in Poland Mike?

I can't really tell. The one parish I attend has < 5 min sermons, the second one - over 25 min. I know the official guidelines are +/- 15 min but I do not know how is it observed.

I suppose in Podlachia the sermons are generally a bit longer?... But all depends on the priest, I know that one priest from the Cathedral parish in Warsaw sometimes gives such sermon that it lasts ~40 minutes...
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« Reply #17 on: April 01, 2013, 04:53:34 PM »

Not long enough and too long, depends on who is preaching and the mood of the priest.  police

Usually around 25-40, maybe more..

I think I must find myself another church, there is too much dark-mindness in the current parish , even among priests, or it might be just me.. Anyway I recently feel no pleasure or satisfaction in going to church.. Too much negativity, judgementalism and dark-mindness. Is like every Sunday is a funeral. What is the deal with that.  Cry

Has always been this way?  Perhaps it seems "dark" because it is Great Lent and folks are a bit more reserved?

Are there other churches you can go that are near you?  One Sunday go and visit another Orthodox parish.  Sometimes, change is good.

Smiley

I actually went to a Russian church this last Sunday for Vespers, officiated by a MP bishop!  The walls didn't cave in!!!  Cheesy  I even went up to him and spoke to him in Ukrainian and he didn't knock me over the head with his huge blessing Cross.  Wink

As for sermons....it depends on the day.  If it's just an "average" mid year Sunday, than perhaps 10-15 minutes.

If it is a mid-week Feast Day and there are only 5 people in church, than about 5 minutes, as the priest realizes the 5 people need to get to work.

If the bishop is visiting....the sermon can be 30 minutes....to a full house and a captivated audience.

My bishop (His Grace Bishop Daniel UOCofUSA) gives the best sermons!  He is succinct, to the point, and his messages always hit home.  The women have learned over the last few years, to bring Kleenex with them on the days he visits.  He never fails to hit that painful cord, that stirs the heart, humbles the spirit and energizes the body! 

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« Reply #18 on: April 01, 2013, 04:59:41 PM »

I actually went to a Russian church this last Sunday for Vespers, officiated by a MP bishop! 

Strange you consider him to be a real bishop. He's Russian and everyone knows no single Russian can be a decent man (not to mention validity of their canonical actions).
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« Reply #19 on: April 01, 2013, 05:03:55 PM »


I am offended by your statement - aimed at my supposed bias against Russian episcopacy.

You, my friend, are referring to a discussion that took place on Facebook, which I felt compelled to delete your comments from my Wall.

If you wish to discuss this matter further, please begin a new topic, in the correct section of this Forum, and I will be more than happy to oblige you in further polite discussion.

For the record, what Michal just stated does not reflect my beliefs, nor those of my Church. I wont' get in to politics here, but, nobody ever said the MP is not valid.

I accept your apology, which I am certain is coming forthwith.
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« Reply #20 on: April 01, 2013, 05:31:07 PM »

Not long enough and too long, depends on who is preaching and the mood of the priest.  police

Usually around 25-40, maybe more..

I think I must find myself another church, there is too much dark-mindness in the current parish , even among priests, or it might be just me.. Anyway I recently feel no pleasure or satisfaction in going to church.. Too much negativity, judgementalism and dark-mindness. Is like every Sunday is a funeral. What is the deal with that.  Cry

Not in my parish. The fundamental underlying theme is love. We are also fortunate to have a priest who challenges us to be "all that we can be." He gently but insistently pushes us to excel as followers of the Lord; shoot for the "A" and do not be satisfied with a passing grade, so to speak. Now, undoubtedly the Great Lent is a penitential season but I am just thinking that Pascha will be all the more sweeter and joyful who participate in weekday services.
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« Reply #21 on: April 01, 2013, 05:36:57 PM »


I am offended by your statement - aimed at my supposed bias against Russian episcopacy.

You, my friend, are referring to a discussion that took place on Facebook, which I felt compelled to delete your comments from my Wall.

If you wish to discuss this matter further, please begin a new topic, in the correct section of this Forum, and I will be more than happy to oblige you in further polite discussion.

For the record, what Michal just stated does not reflect my beliefs, nor those of my Church. I wont' get in to politics here, but, nobody ever said the MP is not valid.

I accept your apology, which I am certain is coming forthwith.


If you want, you can continue that here.
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« Reply #22 on: April 01, 2013, 05:51:10 PM »

NOTE: The poll is defective. Not that it is scientifically done.

However, there are 5 options, and one may select all five options.



If the sermon during the Divine Liturgy or immediately following the Divine Liturgy is well-delivered with a good thesis, supporting passages, and a conclusion that ties it all together, along with variations in tone (not delivered in a monotone), then it can be up to 20 minutes.

Longer than that would make it difficult as people would be running out to use the restrooms, or get a drink of water.

Some priests give lenten weekday sermons after Pre-Sanctified Liturgy and the parish Lenten Potluck. After the food has been set out and blessed, we would be allowed 15 minutes to eat, then we would move our refreshments to a central table for the homily. That would allow the priest time to drink some coffee and have a bite to eat. These homilies have been up to one hour in length and are wonderful. During Saturday Days of Recollection, sermons in the hall that follow the Saturday Divine Liturgy and brunch are considerably longer than those in church and last 45 minutes to one hour.
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« Reply #23 on: April 01, 2013, 06:22:25 PM »

Not long enough and too long, depends on who is preaching and the mood of the priest.  police

Usually around 25-40, maybe more..

I think I must find myself another church, there is too much dark-mindness in the current parish , even among priests, or it might be just me.. Anyway I recently feel no pleasure or satisfaction in going to church.. Too much negativity, judgementalism and dark-mindness. Is like every Sunday is a funeral. What is the deal with that.  Cry

Has always been this way?  Perhaps it seems "dark" because it is Great Lent and folks are a bit more reserved?

Are there other churches you can go that are near you?  One Sunday go and visit another Orthodox parish.  Sometimes, change is good.

Smiley

I actually went to a Russian church this last Sunday for Vespers, officiated by a MP bishop!  The walls didn't cave in!!!  Cheesy  I even went up to him and spoke to him in Ukrainian and he didn't knock me over the head with his huge blessing Cross.  Wink

As for sermons....it depends on the day.  If it's just an "average" mid year Sunday, than perhaps 10-15 minutes.

If it is a mid-week Feast Day and there are only 5 people in church, than about 5 minutes, as the priest realizes the 5 people need to get to work.

If the bishop is visiting....the sermon can be 30 minutes....to a full house and a captivated audience.

My bishop (His Grace Bishop Daniel UOCofUSA) gives the best sermons!  He is succinct, to the point, and his messages always hit home.  The women have learned over the last few years, to bring Kleenex with them on the days he visits.  He never fails to hit that painful cord, that stirs the heart, humbles the spirit and energizes the body! 



My midweek sermons are 1-2 minutes (except Nativity, which is about 10 minutes on the eve and 10 minutes in the morning, and Theophany which is at least 5 minutes).  My usual Sunday sermon is 15 minutes, but can go to 18 minutes, and sometimes 20.  This past Sunday, I did an unusually long sermon, but the front side was actually liturgical procedural announcements--actual sermon was 25 minutes, but total including procedural announcements 30 minutes.   
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« Reply #24 on: April 01, 2013, 06:46:09 PM »

I recall the Paschal "post-sermon" of 2009 with some trepidation. Our priest read the traditional homily. Then our Bishop decided to speak afterward....for 1.5 hours  Lips Sealed I was about 7.5 months pregnant with our 4th, I had 2 children asleep on top of me. It felt like the longest 1.5 hours of my life.

Typically our priest speaks for 15-20 minutes, very rarely it will stretch to 30 minutes. Given the sermon was a minimum of an hour at the last church we attended (MH) with little actual content, I find even the 30 minute homilies mercifully short.
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« Reply #25 on: April 02, 2013, 04:16:14 PM »

NOTE: The poll is defective. Not that it is scientifically done.

However, there are 5 options, and one may select all five options.

I've explained in the OP why I allow multiple answers.
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« Reply #26 on: April 15, 2013, 01:15:44 AM »

I remember St. John Chrysostom talked about the length of the service, and how long sermons should be. but i no longer have the book i read it from. I will have to get that back.

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« Reply #27 on: May 02, 2013, 10:47:07 AM »

I attend more than one parish.  At one they are usually 10-15 minutes.  Perfect.  At the other they can easily be 45 minutes or longer.  People stop listening after 10 minutes.

I personally feel if your point is strong, you can make your case in 10 minutes.  If you have to talk for an hour to get your point out, you need to examine why. 
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« Reply #28 on: May 02, 2013, 10:59:58 AM »

I attend a Methodist Church w/ my wife and that sermon is about 45 minutes.  I invariably fall asleep in it and wake up in time to then go to DL where the sermon is about 10 minutes; much more managable.  I just wish it was later in the service because my feet hurt afterwhile and I like to sit down. #pewheresy  Wink
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« Reply #29 on: May 02, 2013, 01:58:43 PM »

I always wonder how people made it through the huge sermons some of the Fathers gave, like St. Gregory Palamas' sermon on the Entry of the Theotokos.
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« Reply #30 on: May 02, 2013, 02:33:44 PM »

I always wonder how people made it through the huge sermons some of the Fathers gave, like St. Gregory Palamas' sermon on the Entry of the Theotokos.

Many such sermons could have been written, but never actually preached to a congregation.

IIRC his biographer says that, while on Athos, he would only show up in church on Saturdays and Sundays and that one time he was quite disturbed by people fussing around/talking in church. So there's a chance he might have spoken it to test the forbearance of his listeners. 
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« Reply #31 on: May 02, 2013, 02:49:24 PM »

My sermons typically clock in at around ten, maybe fifteen minutes. (Yes, I am licensed to preach.)

It's what's being said that counts. Both the current and immediate previous rectors seem to have a thing about keeping sermons short, which is OK if they get where they're trying to go in the talk and have some place to go in the first place. The rector now has a tendency to preach the first 2/3s of a sermon and leave off the part where he pulls all his thoughts together. OTOH back years ago we had a rector who typically preached for a half hour, and was worth listening to for that long. And when I was a kid the minister always preached for thirty minutes: baptodisterian preachers in those days made the sermon the centerpiece of the service.
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« Reply #32 on: May 05, 2013, 05:22:38 AM »

Just yesterday, I attended pascha in the local MP parish. They started at 11, and after the usual homily of St John ChrysostomN the priest decided to give his own sermon. By the time it ends, the sun was up.
My friend who invited me said that his sermon usually lasts 90 mins to 2 hrs.
Later I found out that the priest was a former mullah befor becoming a protestant pastor and eventually orthodox priest.
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« Reply #33 on: May 05, 2013, 01:58:29 PM »

2 hours sermon??
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« Reply #34 on: May 05, 2013, 02:56:51 PM »

Just yesterday, I attended pascha in the local MP parish. They started at 11, and after the usual homily of St John ChrysostomN the priest decided to give his own sermon. By the time it ends, the sun was up.
My friend who invited me said that his sermon usually lasts 90 mins to 2 hrs.
Later I found out that the priest was a former mullah befor becoming a protestant pastor and eventually orthodox priest.

I don't care HOW good someone is, at a certain point I tend to forget what people are talking about!  lol
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« Reply #35 on: May 05, 2013, 04:46:58 PM »

20-30 mins each time. I do not however understand them as they are in russian. But in given time (God willingly, I someday soon will).
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« Reply #36 on: May 06, 2013, 11:07:56 AM »

I attend a Methodist Church w/ my wife and that sermon is about 45 minutes.  I invariably fall asleep in it and wake up in time to then go to DL where the sermon is about 10 minutes; much more managable.  I just wish it was later in the service because my feet hurt afterwhile and I like to sit down. #pewheresy  Wink
Personally, I like the sermon as is, because it gives a break from standing, and makes everything nice and easy, haha
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« Reply #37 on: May 06, 2013, 11:11:05 AM »

I attend a Methodist Church w/ my wife and that sermon is about 45 minutes.  I invariably fall asleep in it and wake up in time to then go to DL where the sermon is about 10 minutes; much more managable.  I just wish it was later in the service because my feet hurt afterwhile and I like to sit down. #pewheresy  Wink
Personally, I like the sermon as is, because it gives a break from standing, and makes everything nice and easy, haha
Maybe I should lobby my priest to do two sermons for additional sitting time.  laugh
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« Reply #38 on: May 06, 2013, 02:40:32 PM »

Just yesterday, I attended pascha in the local MP parish. They started at 11, and after the usual homily of St John ChrysostomN the priest decided to give his own sermon. By the time it ends, the sun was up.

Seriously? Where is this parish? Those are some tough people at that church.
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« Reply #39 on: May 07, 2013, 07:21:01 AM »

It's in Jakarta, Indonesia about 24 hours flight from LA and 28-30 hrs from NY.
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« Reply #40 on: May 10, 2013, 04:52:04 PM »

Depending on which Priest is preaching, it could be 5 minutes, 10 minutes, or 20 minutes. I've recorded some of their sermons, and just an interesting tidbit, it's funny to see (with an audio editor) that each Priest speaks in a pattern consistent with their previous sermons. I also must mention, that those 5-10-20 minute figures are possibly with all the pauses cut out, so their sermons could be several minutes longer on average, especially for those Priests who like to pause between each sentence.
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« Reply #41 on: July 18, 2013, 01:43:21 AM »

I am Roman Catholic and the Latin Mass chapel I was going to had sermons that long, I think. Maybe a little less actually, but they were long but good.
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« Reply #42 on: July 20, 2013, 05:21:21 PM »

As for me, speaking generally and without regard to any particular parish, jurisdiction, etc., I enjoy long sermons if they are well-organized and well-thought out, i.e., something in the nature of a mini academic discourse which presents a certain thesis as the interpretation/application of what was read, which then explains how this can be seen in the writings of Scripture and the Fathers and also how it can be applied now, and which demonstrates careful study of the topic.  The sermons of the early Fathers certainly all seem to be of this type.  The most painful are long sermons which do not appear well-thought out and which, rather than presenting such a synthesis on a particular topic for edification, are merely a series of unconnected thoughts or, even worse, "feelings" on a particular issue.  These strike me as the presentation of unpolished drafts.

In my history of pre-Orthodox church attendance, I often felt perturbed by some of the Protestant sermons which started off with a reading of the Biblical text and then went off into the pastor's own thoughts for the day, without actually explaining what had just been read or trying to ground it in any sort of doctrine or tradition.
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« Reply #43 on: July 21, 2013, 05:20:19 PM »

In my history of pre-Orthodox church attendance, I often felt perturbed by some of the Protestant sermons which started off with a reading of the Biblical text and then went off into the pastor's own thoughts for the day, without actually explaining what had just been read or trying to ground it in any sort of doctrine or tradition.

Not unheard of*.

*never been a Protestant.
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« Reply #44 on: July 21, 2013, 05:43:16 PM »

The Priest at the parish I attend hasn't offered a sermon since Christmas. (I wasn't there for Pascha so he might have then)
Does anyone else experience this?
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