It has been a relaxed sort of day ... recuperating from yesterday's hefty drive (240 km), chatting with friends...then off to the noon hour seminar for a further reading and discussion of St. Augustine, De doctrina christiana; we're into Book Four, batting to and fro Augustine's theories about rhetoric, his rhetorical analyses of Scripture, his "helpful hints" to preachers. One of the other attendees is a retired English teacher -- and a former parishioner of mine -- we consider ourselves to be members of the same union as St. Augustine and we have a great time with our "shared interests." There is just one more meeting in this session, next Monday, and we were in no hurry to rush away at the end of the hour, so wound up just sitting in the empty classroom and trading stories and perceptions about the art of teaching...and students we are glad to remember. And others.
The question had been raised earlier as to whether preaching is primarily paedagogical or hortatory. Are we informing? or are we SWAYING people to take action? (Or are we just being as entertaining as possible so that they don't start meditating on tar and/or feathers?) I don't know. I think when I preach it is always paedagogical...in fact I think the paedagogical exchange is my primary model for human connection. Teach me something, and I'll love you forever. If you have nothing to teach, sit down and I'll teach you something. If that isn't on the cards either -- "get off my porch."
When we finally gathered up our stuff and took off-- I had papers to pick up, background stuff for a national meeting next week, and then looked for some lunch, wound up eating half and getting half packed up for supper, and off for coffee with a friend and instructions for dog-sitting tomorrow. And so home.