“Kerygma” (pronounced “kay-ROOG-mah” or “kah-REEG-mah”) is a Greek word that means “proclamation.” I’m not quite sure when I first encountered this word, but I remember being caught up with the idea that it is the Gospel message boiled down to its essence. I wanted to read a sample kerygma so I would know how to proclaim the Good News in a way that would take root in my listeners. Kerygma is contrasted with didache, which means extended teaching or instruction. RCIA would be a good example of a didache.
I created a couple of kerygmatic sequences just to try the idea out. My first kerygma is an attempt to sum up the whole Bible in just twelve sentences. My second attempt I created for use on Twitter. After reading a couple posts by Monsignor Charles Pope on the characteristics of a good kerygma, I realized that I need to go back to the drawing board.
A good kerygma should include an event, like a miracle. This miracle could be a healing, like the conversion of a wounded soul. Then, there needs to be an explanation that is rooted in the person of Jesus Christ. The event could not be explained in any other way except by a personal encounter with Jesus Christ. Lastly, there needs to be an exhortation, a call to action. Specifically, a good kerygma should end by asking the audience to repent and also seek out Jesus.
Praise be to God, I think the Holy Spirit has given me the ingredients for a good kerygma, but I still need to mix them together, cook it and serve it to my guests. To be continued…