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Sunday, April 19, 2020

How to grow spiritually during COVID-19

Check out this message about how to experience life during this time of death. The message starts at 21 minutes: 

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Preaching through a Camera to a Congregation during Crisis

This is for all of my preaching peeps out there trying to figure out how to preach the grace and truth of Christ in this COVID-19 pandemic. Enjoy, complements of CT's Preaching Today. 

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

10 New Year Resolutions for the Preacher

I will be as careful to empathically exegete people as I am to skillfully exegete the biblical text.

I will devote 25% of my sermon prep time to internalizing the sermon for delivery so that I preach to people not paper.

I will be more concerned with what people think of God than me because of my words.

I will be so focused that I can articulate the entire sermon in one compelling sentence before I preach it.

I will take creative risks in preaching the Gospel.

I will pray through the church directory as part of my weekly sermon preparation.

I will attach a memorable metaphor to my sermon focus.

I will conclude the sermon sooner than I want to finish.

I will practice preaching not as a rhetorical task but as spiritual discipline through which I love God and people.

I will trust God to use the so-so words of this so-so preacher to transform so-so people into disciples who transform the world.  

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Come Tour the Holy Land with Me

WESLEY SEMINARY PROC650: Preaching the Life of Christ – Dr. Lenny Luchetti
Learn about the historical background, the customs, people, and places, of the New Testament world. Students will preach a homily at a significant location in the life of Christ. Join us for an experience of a lifetime that merges biblical studies, spiritual formation, and preaching.
COURSE DATES: May 22 – June 25, 2020 TRAVEL DATES: June 12 – 21, 2020
COSTS: $3,000.00** + Tuition (students taking the course for credit) $3,500.00** (spouses, alumni & friends of Wesley Seminary/IWU, students auditing)
**all inclusive (meals, flights from Chicago, entrance to archeological sites, 3-star hotel accommodations, double room occupancy)

For more information or to reserve your spot, send me an email at

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Reviews of Preaching with Empathy

Mark 10:21 says, "Jesus looked at him and loved him..." Maybe one of the most missed aspects of preaching today is loving the people to whom we preach and loving the community in which we live. To love them requires that we look at them. Preaching with Empathy challenges every preacher to soften our callous caused by years of hurt and, as Jesus did, love. Love those whom Jesus loves by getting close enough to really see them. Dr. Luchetti's book will help preachers preach with empathy if they are willing to get close enough to love again. Aaron

This book is profound and practical. It is a much needed emphasis in our individualistic, self-absorbed culture. Fillled wtih helpful examples and practical advice, Preaching with Empathy is both a book about preaching as a spiritual discipline and preaching as a craft, but one in which empathy is an integral component, not an afterthought. A needed to addition the preacher's bookshelf. Great for small group coaching and for use in preaching preaching classes.  Alyce

I love this book, and highly recommend it for ALL who care about the art of preaching or who simply wish to learn more about empathy (a topic not often written about in such an accessible manner!) and how to communicate more effectively in any context. Brannon

In an era when partisanship and even tribalism are prevalent, being empathetic is counter cultural. Learning to preaching empathetically is necessary when listeners seem more attuned to ideas that have the possibility of taken as partisan rhetoric. Readers of Preaching with Empathy can learn to develop a relational bond with their audience whether it is across ideology or even ethnicity. In order to truly gain a hearing for the gospel in such contentious times requires the ability to position ourselves in other’s perspectives. Luchetti is right to build on Bonhoeffer’s quote, “We should listen with the ears of God that we may speak the Word of God.”  Scott

Click here to read more reviews

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Excerpt from Preaching with Empathy: Crafting Sermons in a Callous Culture

Some of you have asked for an excerpt. Here is a snippet from the introduction:

Seminary taught many of us important skills for preaching. We were shown how to exegete a biblical text by probing the literary, historical, and theological contexts. Next in the curricular lineup was the art of rhetoric. Various linear and narrative sermon forms were critiqued or commended. Then we were thrown into a somewhat sterile preaching lab where we tried our best to impress our peers and professor with voice fluctuation, gesture variety, and, of course, eye contact. Seminary professors hoped that students, in the process of learning how to preach, would develop a deep love for God, scripture, and preaching. I suspect most of us did.

There is another love necessary for preaching to reach its full potential for societal transformation—love for those to whom we preach. It’s not enough to get the biblical text, sermon form, and delivery right; the preacher must also get the listeners “right.” If not, the preacher will “prepare generic sermons for generic humanity that never truly become enfleshed in the real-life situations of particular congregations.”

Enter empathy. Empathy gives preachers the capacity, the grace really, to slip their feet into the shoes of their congregants so that they think and feel what their people think and feel. Empathy can make mediocre preaching better, and good preaching great. Without empathy, preachers cannot begin to fully know and love the people to whom they preach. Furthermore, the preacher who lacks empathy will have only a partial view of the God in whose image listeners are made. Empathy that is rooted in and compelled by the trinitarian God has the power to create a revolution in the pulpit and pew that ripples to the ends of the earth.

Simon Baron-Cohen writes, “Empathy itself is the most valuable resource in our world. . . . Given this assertion, it is puzzling that . . . it is rarely, if ever, on the agenda.” If you feel nobody is listening to, or being transformed by, your preaching, I can relate. Maybe your problem has little to do with exegesis or delivery and a lot to do with empathy.