Hear the word of the Lord: how the practice of learning scriptures by heart and performing them in worship transforms preaching
Peter Swift Buehler
The thesis demonstrated that when a preacher learns scriptures by heart for performance in worship his/her hearing, and therefore preaching, improves. As the fields of Oral Interpretation and Performance Studies show, the Bible is best heard when performed. Preachers who internalize texts speak from a personal encounter with the Word. The thesis studied how a weekly scripture by heart practice serves to focus the preacher's attention, engage the imagination, inform exegesis, and guide sermon preparation. The writer's own story and the survey comments of parishioners established how the discipline is transforming--a means of grace for preacher and congregation alike.