Natalya Myznikova, Independent scholar (Moscow)
The article is devoted to the analysis of materials about church sermon, published in the journal “Guide for Rural Pastors” (weekly publication at the Kiev Theological Seminary; 1860–1917) in the second half of the nineteenth century. Consideration is given to the issue of reviving preaching among the parish clergy in the post-reform period, as well as the problem of the quality of preaching activities of the rural clergy. The article presents the opinions of the authors of the journal in these areas, as well as the controversy that arose in the periodical press around the publications. It is noted that the authors of the “Guide” recognized teaching as one of the main elements of pastoral ministry, which was not typical of the Russian Orthodox Church at that time. The development of preaching was one of the main tasks of the journal. Almost all publications on homiletics published at that time were reflected in its pages. However, the position of its authors, who declared the revival of the sermon, but at the same time correlated its current situation not with the New Testament or Early Christian norm, but with the pre-reform time, did not agree with the opinion of the authors of other church and secular publications that stated a deep crisis of teaching. The quality of individual publications on this topic and the sermons published in the journal were repeatedly criticized by other publications.
Keywords: sermon, church preaching, pastoral ministry, homiletics, church publicity, “Guide for Rural Pastors”.