Weekly Sermon Summary

Handling Criticism – (09.18.21 – Lk. 7:28-35)     



Dear St. Paul family,

Sermon - Handling Criticism

Cornerstone - Women of the OT - Esther

Explanation of the Liturgy - Offering #2

The gospel is from Lk. 7:28-35, about St. John the Baptist.

Every get criticized? At work? Friends? Spouse maybe? How do you handle it?

John the forerunner and Baptist was critical about King Herod’s lifestyle. He told him it wasn’t lawful for him to have relations with his brother’s wife. Result – jail.

Know this about criticism:

  • Everyone gets criticized

  • Criticism hurts

  • Criticism can be helpful

  • Our response is critical

People criticize because: 
1: They have critical spirits.
2: They don’t know the whole story.
3: It makes them feel better about themselves.
4: It’s easier to complain about problems than to solve them.
5: Some people criticize because a “real fault” needs correcting.

There are 3 types of criticism:

  1. Accurate (constructive)

  2. Inaccurate (constructive)

  3. Malicious (destructive)

Let us see how to handle those three:

  1. Accurate Criticism(constructive)

    • It doesn’t have to be 100% true

    • Use it as opportunity to grow, change, improve or correct

    • Respond calmly, listen attentively and don’t be defensive


  1. Inaccurate Criticism (constructive)

    • Look for a grain of truth and treat as above

    • Use as opportunity to teach, not to defend


  1. Destructive Criticism

    • Don’t return criticism by criticism

    • Give grace by praying for them

    • Insults – out of bounds and you should set a boundary

    • Ignore it – don’t let it bother you

Maybe in the past, I didn’t handle criticism the best way. Understand and acknowledge that everyone gets criticized and it is normal that it hurts. Let us use accurate corrective criticism to grown and correct ourselves, inaccurate ones to take any grain of truth of it while correcting anything untrue and deal with destructive criticism with grace, not returning criticism and just moving on.

Fr. James