Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Teaching vs. Writing

One teaches a class. One writes a sermon. One writes a blog. One writes an article. There is a difference between teaching and writing. When one is teaching, one can get feedback, one can get a response and respond to that, clarify, clear things up. You don't get that when you write a sermon, you don't get that when you write an article.

Here is the thought that I have. You can't be as advanced when "writing" as you can when "teaching" - because when you teach you can more easily make sure that things are clear. With teaching you can pull the students up through information - when writing the hearer/reader is left more on their own to sort and sift through the info.

When planning a class, you can plan at a different level of complexity than you can with a sermon. If you are writing an article for high schoolers to read it needs to be simpler than a class you would teach them face to face. That's just an issue of communication.

I'm not sure what the point is - but this is something that we should probably remember when we plan and write.

1 comment:

Fr. Gregory Hogg said...

Pr. Brown, you said:

"You can't be as advanced when 'writing' as you can when 'teaching'..."

An interesting point...I think you've got something here. I wonder how, if at all, it might relate to these words of St. Basil:

"Concerning the teachings of the Church, whether publicly proclaimed (kerygma) or reserved to members of the household of faith (dogmata), we have received some from that which has been written, while others have been given to us secretly, through apostolic tradition. Both have equal force in true religion. No one would deny either--no one, at any rate, who is even slightly familiar with the ordinances of the Church. If we attacked unwritten customs, claiming them to be of little importance, we would fatally mutilate the Gospel, no matter what our intentions . . ."

(Note: If you compare the citation above with the St. Vlad's translation, you'll find I've omitted the word 'source' where it occurs. That's because the Greek doesn't have it.)

The unworthy priest,

Fr. Gregory