PREACHING THE MYSTERY OF FAITH:
THE SUNDAY HOMILY
4The Church is the bearer of Christ’s Word to the world down through the ages until the Lord5returns. This is why in her sacraments, in her authoritative teaching, in her liturgy, and in the6lives of her saints, the Church proclaims the Word first entrusted to the Apostles with7transformative power.
One of the most significant ways in which the Church as the Body of 8Christ proclaims the dynamic Word of God is through the preaching of her ordained ministers,9 particularly in the context of the Sunday Eucharist.
Preaching is nothing less than a participation10in the dynamic power of the apostolic witness to the very Word that created the world, the Word11that was given to the prophets and teachers of Israel, and the Word that became flesh.
The Intended Audience and Purpose of This Statement
13We offer this reflection on preaching to our brother priests, who, by virtue of presbyteral14ordination, share in the apostolic office to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ,
as well as to our 15deacons, who may preach the homily in accord with the provisions of canon law as ministers of 16the Word.
We also address those who are responsible for the formation and training of future17 priests and deacons as well as those who conduct continuing education programs for clergy,18
Catechism of the Catholic Church
(CCC), nos. 2-3.
Code of Canon Law
(CIC), c. 767 §§1-2;
Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches
(CCEO), c. 614 §§1-2.
Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation
), no. 8: “Thus, the apostolic preaching, which isexpressed in a special way in the inspired books, was to be preserved in a continuous line of succession until the endof time. . . . What was handed on by the apostles comprises everything that serves to make the People of God livetheir lives in holiness and increase their faith. In this way the Church, in her doctrine, life and worship, perpetuatesand transmits to every generation all that she herself is, all that she believes.” (Citations from Vatican II documentsare taken from
Vatican Council II: Volume 1: The Conciliar and Post-Conciliar Documents
, ed. Austin Flannery[Northport, NY: Costello Publishing Company, 1996].)
Decree on the Life and Ministry of Priests
), II, 4.
National Directory for the Formation, Ministry, and Life of Permanent Deacons in the United States
(Washington, DC: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops [USCCB], 2005), no. 35, p. 19; CIC, c. 764