Name applied since the time of Origen to a didactic commentary, without formal introduction, division, or conclusion, on some part of Sacred Scripture, the aim being to explain the literal, and evolve the spiritual, meaning of the text. Among the famous homilists are Origen, Saint Hilary, Saint Ambrose, Saint Chrysostum, Saint Augustine, and Saint Bernard of Clairvaux. The oldest homily extant is the so-called Second Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians. At present there are four methods of treating the homily

  • to treat separately each sentence of the Gospel
  • to focus the entire content of the Gospel in a single idea
  • to select some virtue or vice arising out of the Gospel, and to treat it to the exclusion of all else
  • to paraphrase and explain the entire Gospel, and then make an application of it

MLA Citation

  • “homily”. New Catholic Dictionary. CatholicSaints.Info. 2 October 2010. Web. 15 June 2021. <http://catholicsaints.info/homily/>