Sunday, April 2, 2017

How Long Should a Sermon Be?

It is my understanding that ministers in 17th century Massachusetts used to preach long sermons -- so long that church elders (or whatever their official title was) used poles to prod dozing church members during the marathon sermons. Maybe that is apocryphal, though.

Anyway, it is a legend of sorts: what is implied by it is that people have limited attention spans; even when dwelling on spiritual matters. This can be very important, especially in larger cities where church-goers can choose from several alternatives of a particular denomination. 

Such is the case with Catholic churches in New Orleans: you can find them in several modes of your choosing: Irish, French, or German priest -- no problem. Do you like a Dominican or a Jesuit, or a parish priest? Do you prefer pomp and circumstance, or no? Again, you can choose, baby doll!

[I know the official line is that you are supposed to attend your parish church. But no one hardly received that memo from the Archbishop!] Anyway, matters of convenience come into play. Thus it was with the several generation of Breauxes. Is the church convenient to where you're going afterwards? And very critically: how long does the priest sermonize?

As a matter of fact, this is the key factor among many Orleanians! As a casual rule: after ten minutes, people sort of squirm More than 20 minutes, many are restive. And we're talking about regular attendees here. 

This is particularly critical if the Saints are playing a Sunday afternoon game, especially on the East Coast! If you time it right, you can pick up some Popeye's chicken, a French baguette and a dessert from a bakery, and settle in for the game on time!




A dessert and coffee while watching the game? A good plan.


10 comments:

Rudolph said...

More time to watch the chubby girls dance.

Cloudia said...

Oh yes, back in the day it was ALL day!

John Hill said...

Sermons, like other speeches, can follow rules of fashion for women's dresses --
They should be long enough to adequately cover the subject, but short enough to be interesting!

Hell Hound said...

Speeches in general should be to the point. Sermons included.

Anonymous said...

They seem well-nourished.

Mike said...

I knew John would have the right answer.

Anonymous said...

The best sermon is no sermon.

Elvis Wearing a Bra on His Head said...

Listen to a sermon or watch the Saints cheerleaders. Decisions, decisions.

Insane Penguin said...

Those cheerleaders are real babes. IMO, a sermon should get the point across without lasting too long. Attentions wonder.

Bilbo said...

I don't have to worry about sermon length, because I worship at the Church of the Seventh Day Absenteeists.