Sunday, March 27, 2011

Question of the week: What preachers do you like to listen to?

Last week we talked about listening to one's own sermons for the purpose of self-evaluation. Today, we're visiting about listening to other people's sermons for personal and professional edification. I've made it a practice to listen to other people's sermons for a while, now. It helps with my own creativity. It keeps me thinking of ways to improve my own sermons. Perhaps most importantly, it feeds my soul.

Here are three preachers I've listened to recently - who do you like to listen to?

Adam Hamilton - Dr. Hamilton is the founding pastor of the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, Kansas.

You can stream or download both audio and video at his church's website and on Itunes.

The sermon below is a sermon he preached a few weeks ago that combines a first person monologue (something we've discussed recently) with a normal sermon. I don't know what I think about combining the two, but it gives you an idea of what we were talking about previously.

Richard Kannwischer is the Senior Pastor at St.Andrews Presbyterian Church in New Port, Beach, CA. I visited with Dr. Kannwischer a few months ago for a D.Min. project. He was gracious and kind and had a wealth of wisdom for the task of preaching. I benefited greatly from that conversation and from listening to his sermons.

The video below is the only one I could find in a video format, but audio of his sermons can be streamed/downloaded from both his church's website and on Itunes.

Easter Sermon 04/04/10 St. Andrews Presbyterian Church from sapres on Vimeo.

Julie Pennington-Russell is the senior Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Decatur, GA. Julie was my pastor in Waco, TX when I was in seminary.

The sermon below is one she gave to the students and faculty of Logsdon Seminary in Abilene, TX. Audio of her weekly sermons can be streamed and downloaded at her church's website.

Seminary Chapel September 24, 2009 from Logsdon Seminary on Vimeo.


  1. I listen to Julie and Adam, too. Three other places I frequently turn:

    1) Sam Wells, Duke University

    2) Sarah Jackson Shelton, Birmingham Baptist Church of the Covenant

    3) Several sermons from Center for Excellence in Preaching, Calvin Seminary

    Research a friend of mine has done shows that repetitive listening to good sermons can enhance the listener's ability to understand and imitate vocal inflection and delivery pace, among other things. He requires his seminary students to choose a sermon (from a provided list) and listen to it over a period of three weeks. Week 1: 3 times consecutively three days in a row. Week 2: 2 times consecutively three days in a row. Week 3: 1 time three days in a row. This is based on the Suzuki music method.

  2. Sam Wells - ITunesU/ YouTube - Duke Chapel
    Todd Hunter - ITunes Podcast - Holy Trinity Church
    Walter Brueggemann

    They are all very different preachers, utilizing various strengths. Sam Wells sermons are like poetry with integrity, Todd Hunters sermons seem to really inspire his congregation into action, and Walter... well he is just a personal favorite, a brilliant mind to inspire me!

    Your recommendations are great!