Sacred Rhetoric Summary

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There are many problems with today’s preaching and Pasquarello in his book Sacred Rhetoric: Preaching as a Theological and Pastoral Practice of the Church examines how this can be fixed (vii). Preachers need to go back to the foundations of good preaching exemplified in those preachers of the past who practiced “doctrine, biblical exegesis, worship, spirituality and the moral life, and so forth” (vii). This book review will examine selected preachers that Pasquarello presents, with an emphasis on the importance of preaching through the ministry of God’s Word.
Sacred Rhetoric by Michael Pasquarello emphasizes the importance of the ministry of preaching (1). Today’s preaching consists of devising new techniques or strategies for better communication, drawing crowds, and appealing to the post-modern society. Pasquarello’s aim is to look at preachers in the past whose emphasis with the authority and sufficiency of God’s Word. Preachers need to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ instead of trying to be relevant or successful. As Pasquarello states, “we reduce pastoral ministry to the acquisition of the latest ‘how to’ ideas and strategies, we quickly forget the mystery of divine revelation and the working of grace that are necessary to make sacred rhetoric truly sacred as
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Pastors must be servant-leaders and not lord it over their flock. Gregory presents important points with much wisdom that pastors would do well to follow as an example. There are some (many) who should not be in pastoral ministry because they lead their flock astray. This is due to the fact that there are pastors who do not have sound doctrine which leads to wolves invading the flock. One must be called into pastoral ministry by God in order to do this important work. Gregory provides helpful examples of what the preacher should be doing when caring for the flock of God that every pastor should be aware

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