When did it become normal for preachers to be funny, to tell jokes, and to solicit laughter and guffaws from the congregation? I have witnessed this several times over the past year or so, and I hear tell of it from others, too. It does not make me laugh, but saddens me deeply.
I know that we live in the joy of the Gospel, but our joy is precisely in the Gospel, not in some preacher's attempt at humor. I'm not sure whether it's worse if he's good at it or not. What a waste of time, in any case; and what a terrible distraction from the better things at hand in Christ Jesus.
Turning the pulpit into comedy central is offensive to the office of preaching, which is not the preacher's personal property but the holy office of Christ our Lord, the Word of God the Father.
If a preacher senses in himself an avocation for stand-up comedy or after-dinner speaking, perhaps he should present himself to the appropriate schools and apply for the appropriate jobs. When he ascends the Lord's pulpit, however, God grant that he would know nothing among us except Jesus Christ the Crucified; and that the preacher would be entirely bent upon the task of preaching repentance for the forgiveness of sins in Jesus' Name, unto faith and life in Him. Now that would bring a smile to my face.
Homily at Evening Prayer (last night)
6 hours ago