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PASTORS SHARPEN PREACHING SKILLS IN PILOT PROGRAM

A group of 10 pastors came from as far away as New York and Alberta, Canada, to spend a week at Trinity sharpening their preaching skills by reviewing the basic principles of designing and delivering sermons.

The College hosted "Effective Communication in Preaching" as part of a pilot series of preaching seminars sponsored by Calvin Theological Seminary at various sites this summer. The specific aim of the five-day session July 19-23 was to examine the fundamentals within the art of preaching.

"Our emphasis is on two areas: sermon design and sermon delivery," said Duane Kelderman, professor of preaching at Calvin. "We're looking at the real nuts and bolts of preaching to make good pastors even better.

"This kind of conference is highly needed. These pastors have given a week of their time to get expert feedback and have been very open to the analysis they've received."

Kelderman partnered with Trinity communication arts chair Dr. Annalee Ward and Rev. Sam Hamstra, pastor of Palos Heights Christian Reformed Church, to facilitate the seminar. Ward, who attends Palos Heights CRC, and Hamstra proposed the idea of a forum that would offer preachers practical advice. During their week of fellowship and study, the participants submitted videotapes of their sermons, arranged short presentations, and prepared sermons for critical review.

"Dr. Ward and I talked about organizing a conference that would provide more hands-on interaction," Hamstra said. "As a professor of (communication arts), God can use her to teach preachers how to be more effective communicators. This was an opportunity for her to spread her wings, so to speak, and she did a superb job.

"Trinity is a wonderful setting for this kind of seminar, and the pastors had an excellent time here. I think the reviews of this pilot will be good, and maybe the conference will return here in the near future."

Related Links:
Annalee Ward - Professor of Communication Arts


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