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The Festival of Homiletics celebrates its 20th anniversary May 14-18 in Atlanta. This year's festival will bring together more than 30 of the most influential leaders in homiletics, worship and music. They'll address the topic of transformational preaching at the crossroads. An estimated average of 1,500-1,800 pastors and congregational leaders are expected to attend.
The Rev. David Howell pioneered the idea for the festival when his preaching hit a wall in the late 1980s. After discovering a void of preaching resources for pastors, Howell published a pilot edition of Lectionary Homiletics, a journal meant to fill the gap, in December 1989.
The preaching community quickly rallied around the resource, inspiring Howell to establish a conference for gathering that very community. The first Festival of Homiletics, held in 1992, gathered 400 pastors from around the country to learn and converse about preaching in contemporary contexts.
Under Howell's leadership, the Festival of Homiletics has grown immensely in both its attendance and influence, attracting some of the nation's top scholars in homiletics. Howell served as founding director of the festival until the fall of 2011, when he began his transition into retirement, moving much of the festival's leadership and planning efforts to Luther Seminary.
Regarded as an "extraordinary program" by preaching legend Fred Craddock and "a miracle to behold" by renowned Old Testament scholar Walter Brueggemann, the Festival of Homiletics continues to grow and shape the larger church. As the festival's current owner, Luther Seminary looks forward to continuing the high level of leadership and planning behind the festival, further living into the seminary's commitment to good biblical preaching and a spirit of innovation.
This year's events feature a seminar on the Emergent Church, a worship conference with John Bell and a day at Ebenezer Baptist Church.
For more information about this year's festival, visit us online!
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Your support ensures that future church leaders can pursue their call in ministry.