From Fr. Tom,
While in the seminary, classes in homiletics were required. We learned to read through scripture with the purpose of making them relevant in today’s world. We were also taught to read other spiritual authors and scripture scholars to seek out their views and opinions. Then we try to make the scriptures come alive in our own parishes in the form of the homily. It is a basic rule that in public speaking, for every minute you are planning to speak, there should be at least one hour of preparation. For me, that’s just about right. I try to do two things in a homily. The first thing is to make ONE clear and useful point. Then while doing the first thing, I try to use a phrase or image that is easily brought back to memory to help the listener recall the homily long after Mass is over. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. The two disciples walking on the road to Emmaus slowly but surely “got the point” while Jesus began walking with them on their way. They went back home changed individuals with a much deeper understanding of who and what Christ is to them. They will never forget that walk. God bless you all!