The New Art of Preaching: An Aesthetic Homiletic for the 21st Century

“Homiletical Aesthetics: A Paradigmatic Proposal for a Holistic Pedagogy of Preaching ”

Team Members/Contributors

Sunggu Yang George Fox University Contact Me

About this sabbatical grant for researchers

I propose numen-participatory or numinous-aesthetic homiletics. I plan to accomplish this project through rigorous intersectional research between various modern art forms and homiletic theories. What truly distinguishes my work from previous ones on arts and preaching is its intra-dynamic hermeneutical approach to existing illustrative and integrative approaches. For instance, when it comes to painting art and preaching, the preacher can refer to Picasso’s cubist work with a simple verbal illustration in the sermon or even actually show a piece of Picasso’s cubist art on the digital screen as a more integral part of the sermon. By contrast, my intra-dynamic approach goes further by attempting to create an actual cubist sermon (Chapter III of the book). In cubist preaching, Picasso’s name or work would not necessarily appear or be used as an illustration or integral prop, for the sermon itself is cubistic intra-dynamically. The same would apply to Jørn Utzon and Preaching: An Architectural Homiletic (Chapter VI). Preaching can be experienced as highly architectural on its own even without a single mention of a famous construction (or an architect) or even without showing a short film clip about aesthetic architecture.

This artistic intra-dynamic approach will challenge our heavily text-driven, barely aesthetic homiletic education and preaching practice today. Chapter I indeed, as the theoretic foundation of the entire book, lays out the urgency and significance of aesthetic-numinous education and paradigm of preaching in the 21st century. The eventual goal of this fresh artistic-holistic preaching is to meet two particular needs of the church: 1) the dynamic spiritual formation of the preacher, and 2) the holistic-aesthetic and multi-sensory exposition and experience of the Holy Scripture both by the preacher and the congregation.