Archbishop Socrates Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan admitted that boring sermons during Mass are unfair to God and to churchgoers.
Villegas, the incoming president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), said that the Mass is the highest form of prayer and priests should prepare and read carefully the intent of their homilies.
“It is unfair to God. It is unfair to the people. It is also unfair to me because I’m depriving myself of the good encounter with God,” Villegas said.
He said that his failure to prepare for the liturgy and failure to pray before the Mass are the reasons why he ended up having boring sermons.
He added that priests should also understand and know the people to whom they are addressing their sermons.
“In other words, I was speaking about hunger when I did not feel the hunger myself. I was speaking about death, sorrow and loneliness but I have not felt the loneliness, the death and the sorrow that the parishioners are going through,” the bishop said.
“We priests can preach to empty stomachs but only if our stomach is as empty as our parishioners’. When our life is so different from our parishioners, then we end up giving long and winding homilies. I don’t speak about anyone. I speak about myself and I’m guilty,” he added.