Suggesting priest change (improve!) homily style?

Our priest has good homilies, but delivers them in a monotone style. Is there a way to tactfully suggest a change? I know some people have spoken to him about it, and people have mentioned it to me (not for any particular reason) so this is not a problem I alone am having. This is not the way he usually talks.


I would leave it alone, especially if others have already mentioned it.

Changing the way you speak is pretty difficult to do. Maybe he’s got stage fright. Maybe he’s working on it. I don’t think there’s a tactful way to suggest that without making him feel more self-conscious :/. If he is a good and holy priest, rejoice in that!

I agree with this and would also not approach the priest with such a suggestion…


Yes. As Father is leaning back at your table sipping his wine after finishing his second helping of home made Chicken Saltimbocca accompanied by a light Penna in Vodka sauce as the espresso is brewing and just before you plate the cheesecake, you can mention how everyone loves his homilies and they sit there with rapt attention but some people lose focus because he is not as animated as they would like so, for the sake of those poor souls, if he could be a little less monotone it would be the Christian thing to do. Then thank him for being an overworked and at times underappreciated sinner who has given his entire life for us to bring us to God. Oh, and then remember to ask him if he wants Sambucca or Anisette for the espresso.:smiley:

Most of that was tongue in cheek, a sentence or two may not have been.:rolleyes:

In my experience…no.

You say that some people have already spoken to hm about it. I can only imagine that those people have already alienated themselves from the priest by doing so…as would anyone else who is likely to take on this topic.

Depending upon his age, I can rather imagine the reason[s] for his mode of delivery.

I wouldn’t do it myself

I suspect the priest is already well aware that public speaking is not one of his strong points. Unless you have a very good and close friendship with him, I cannot imagine a way to approach this that would not be both awkward and pointless. I would just focus on the content of the homilies and compliment him when you can.


No, there is not a tactful way to mention that you find his style monotone.

Besides, if other people have already “mentioned it” then there is no need for you to do so. He knows how some people feel, no need to pile on. It’s not a democracy where people get to vote and if there are enough votes he changes his way of speaking. :rolleyes:

It may be kinder to just listen to what he is saying and not how he says it. It may also help to remember that no one is perfect. We all have things that others may not like about us, but they overlook it. What kind of world would it be if everyone went around telling everyone else their opinion of the other person’s faults? :blush:

Let it go.

like the others said, unless you know him exceptionally well, it’s probably a bad idea to try.

and sometimes these things really can’t be helped. I know myself, I am just horrible at public speaking. there are occasions where it has to be done though and believe me, the whole idea is just stressful enough, having someone nag at you about it doen’st help one bit.

I know it’s hard to listen to a monotone voice, I’ve sat through countless university lectures where the professor just seemed bored but I guess we have to try extra hard in those cases.

there are similar issues at my parish where parishioners complain that they can’t understand the priests that come from elsewhere and have accents. there have even been suggestions that people like that shouldn’t be allowed to become priests. as if having an accent is anyone’s fault.

anyways, if you don’t have an issue then just ignore it. those who do have problems can try harder to pay attention at mass

One hopes that the “relaxing, homemade dinner” was the serious part… :wink: :rotfl:

If people are upset, that may be an indication of a good spirit. (cf. Evangelii nuntiandi, 19)

The precepts recently established on homilies:

…may be a gift not only to your priest but to the diocese. Consider widespread distribution with due justice.

Perhaps you can summarize the point you wish to make as it pertains to this thread? :blush:

Sure – make your comments in private and with great charity.

The problem (which is not uncommon in my opinion) are threefold in my opinion. First, becoming a good preacher takes some real and prolonged effort, not to mention God-given talent. Second, even for good preachers, preparing a homily takes a considerable amount of time. Third, the pressure to preach well (or perish), really doesn’t exist in the Catholic Church. Poor preaching is widely accepted as the norm in many locations.

Accept your priest as he is. :slight_smile:

Some people do not have the gift of being a fantastic orator.

St John Vianney had a mumble, as most of his teeth were missing, sometimes his parishioners couldn’t hear a word he said, some academics say his sermons were not very good,
Yet he had other gifts and strengths and God converted an entire parish through him. And chose him as the Patron Saint of Parish Priests.

“After Mass one day a woman came to me complaining about a priest’s homily. His preaching ability left something to be desired, but then it’s not the Word you listen to, not the way it’s presented. So this woman was complaining and I asked her, ‘How much did you put in the collection?’ She said, ‘A quarter.’ I said, ‘What do you want for a quarter, Bishop Sheen?’” - Mother Angelica

:rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl:

Mother Angelica had a most remarkable wit…and a lightning fast retort. She was quite remarkable.

+1. :slight_smile:

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