For the last three weeks now, I have been preaching from a handwritten manuscript. After trying to work from a detailed outline instead, it is good to be back to writing out everything I intend to say. I am able to think more clearly on paper and I am also able to say things more clearly when I’ve written them out.

This has helped to bring down my sermon length but also to help me stick to the what & why1 of my sermon. I have also found Sunday mornings less stressful as I am able to read through my script focusing on how I will say the things that I have written rather than also trying to figure out the words that I will use.

But as a stationery geek, my favourite thing about doing this (and the reason why I hope to keep it going) is that I now have a notebook that is filling up with sermons. I love notebooks as objects and this one feels special now as well. I’m able to use the index in a way that will actually help me in the future and I am less relient on technology in the pulpit.

So that I’m not constantly turning pages while preaching, I opted for the larger B5-sized Leuchtturm1917 with a dot-grid.

The title and headings are written big in blue. I denote subheadings with a box around it, and the main body of my sermon is written used a green-black ink (Noodlers Zhivago). Scripture references that I intend to read out are noted in either an orange/brown (Diamine Ancient Copper) or a classic blue (Diamine Kensington Blue, one of the most well-behaved inks I have ever used).

On Sunday mornings when I look over my notes, I mark up my script with a red Uni-ball One 0.38 gel pen. I then write down the passage and title in the index and I’m good to go.

The script itself has averaged about 7-8 pages and that takes me around 35 minutes to get through. I stick fairly close to it but not as much as before I worked with an outline.

  1. I should write about this at some point. In brief, the what is the main message of the passage while the why is the application or implication for us today. ↩︎