Of all the things seven years at the Scots College in Rome taught me, it certainly taught me to think on my feet. In particular, the twin lion’s dens of oral exams and weekly sermon class forced me to express myself succinctly and, I think, to teach under pressure.
Many years later, undergoing studies as a beginning Education lecturer, I was challenged to ask myself: what have been my most formative experiences of teaching and being taught, and how am I incorporating them into my practice? The weekly oral proclamation of the homily in the parish came quickly to the fore. Yet had the Sunday homily been a truly educational endeavour? How do I know that my parishioners learned anything? Was it enough to try to be interesting, erudite, concise? Could I learn from the discipline of teaching? In return could I now allow the craft of preaching to inform and enrich my teaching?Read more