Note: This video was made using an older version of the software.
Homily Builder is a homily creation tool that lets you quickly create a homily manuscript, a slide presentation, handouts, and discussion questions simultaneously. Focus on your homily content and build out documents for your services at the same time.
Note: Available in packages Silver and above.
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Note: Homily Builder works closely with Homily Manager, though they are not the same. Homily Manager organizes all your homily documents while Homily Builder creates specific homilies.
Start a Homily
You can start a homily document in two primary ways.
Start a homily with the Documents menu
To create a blank homily click Documents > New > Homily.
Start a homily with the Homily Manager
Open the Homily Manager tool from the Tools menu and click Add in the top right corner.
Note: To open a previously created homily from the Documents menu, filter or search the Documents menu to locate your desired homily. You can also access Homily Builder via the Tools menu.
Add Homily Info
The Homily Info pane holds important details about your homily. The more metadata you add, the easier it will be for you to find at a later date. If you use Faithlife to publish your homilies, this metadata will help others discover your homily and know what it’s about.
Note: If you don’t see the Homily Info panel, click the info icon to the right of the Publish button to toggle it on.
If you publish your homily to Faithlife Homilies, the homily info you provide is indexed and searchable. Many of the input fields are preloaded with consistent naming conventions, like the topics and reference fields. This helps you stay consistent and avoid duplicate tags.
- Series: Provide a series title to add the homily to a series. Matching existing series show below as you type.
- Topics: Begin typing to show predefined biblical topics and themes. Select one from the list to add it to your homily details. You can add multiple topics.
- Passages: Add a biblical passage by typing and choosing the passage from the list below. YOu can add multiple passages.
- Description: Provide a couple of sentences describing the homily's content.
- Private Note: Unlike the other homily metadata, your private notes will not publish to Faithlife Homilies, but are visible to you when viewing the homily in Verbum.
- Speaker: By default, your name shows for any homilies you create. To change the speaker, provide a new name in the input field.
- Occasion: Add a date, venue (like a specific church or conference), and time (e.g., 10:00am Service).
- Audience: Provide audience segments like General Adult, Kids, Youth Group, Conference, or Other.
- Liturgy: Where applicable, add a liturgical day, season, and year.
Note: To create a template for use in the Homily Manager, select Template at the top of the Homily Info pane. Learn more about the Homily Manager.
Add Homily content from Homily Notebook
You can add notes connected to your homily from the Homily Notebook tab (icon) in the Info Pane.
- To create a note, click New note to open the notes tool and add a personal note to your homily. A notebook with the same name as your homily will be created automatically.
- To add note content directly to your homily from a previously-created note, open a notebook to view its notes. The note must be located in a named notebook.
- Click the insert icon to insert content from your selected note into the homily document. Click the edit icon to open the note for editing.
Note: Learn more about the Notes tool in Verbum.
Add Popular Quotes
Use the Popular Quotes tool to find quotes related to your homily or passage. Verbum will pull together all the related quotes and you can bring the best one into your manuscript.
Click the quotes icon and enter your topic or passage.
Drag the quote you want into your manuscript. Homily Builder will bring it in as a block quote and make a dynamic slide. See ‘Style and Edit Slides’ below for editing options.
Revert to Previous Version
Find a previously saved version of your homily by clicking the version history icon . Select a version from the list to revert to that previously saved version.
Add Homily Content
Ensure the Edit tab is selected to add your content. Start writing your homily by creating homily headings and text on the left. While building your manuscript, you can generate slides, a handout, and a question document simultaneously.
Add biblical passages to your homily by typing out the reference and pressing the Enter key. Verbum will add the passage in your preferred Bible translation and create a slide with the passage preloaded on it. You can also add the reference in-line without a slide by pressing the Tab key after your reference.
Note: You can toggle the visibility of the Scripture insertion helpers from the panel menu (click the panel menu icon and enable/disable Show Scripture insertion helpers). While creating lists, you may prefer to show only the reference of a passage. You can set whether or not to allow Scripture insertion in lists from the panel menu (click the panel menu icon and check/uncheck Enable Scripture insertion in lists).
The Formatting Toolbar
The formatting toolbar offers a variety of options and works similarly to other word processing software.
Text Styles: Choose a text style from the dropdown menu.
- Normal: Use this style for the text of your homily. Normal text will not automatically appear in slides, handouts, or questions.
- Heading (1, 2, 3, 4, 5): Verbum will generate slides from each of your headings, as well as include them in your handouts and question documents.
- Blockquote: Set block quotations apart from the rest of your manuscript text.
- Illustration: Set your illustration apart from the rest of your manuscript text.
- Prompt: Set prompts apart from the rest of your manuscript text. Prompts will not be included when you export the transcript of your homily.
- Formatting Styles: Call special attention to any text in your homily manuscript. Click the styling dropdown to add font, color, and background color styling to the selected text. Save any selection as a new style to use it in the future.
- Text Styling: Style any text with standard formatting options like bold, italics, or underline. You can also create bulleted or numbered lists or change the indentation of any selected text.
- Fill-in: Select any text and choose Fill-in from the formatting toolbar to generate a fill-in-the-blank style for the text in your printable handouts. Note: The text also needs to be marked with Include in Handout or Include in Questions.
- Include in Handout : Include text in the handout document by highlighting it and clicking the Handout button. Text included in the Handout document is indicated by a blue background. Selecting this option does not change the appearance of the text when you export it. Deselecting this option will remove the text from your Handout.
- Include in Questions : Include text in the Question document by highlighting it and clicking the Question button. Text included in the Question document is indicated by a green background. Selecting this option does not change the appearance of the text when you export it. Deselecting this option will remove the text from your Question document.
- Undo/Redo: Undo to remove the last content change or redo to add a removed content change back into your document.
- Add Slides from Selected Text : Click to create a slide from any selected text in your homily document.
- Add Slides from Selected References : If you’ve added a reference within a paragraph, Verbum can generate a Bible slide for that reference if you select the paragraph and click this button.
- Clear markup: Clear styling on any selected text with the clear markup button.
Note: Bible slides show your preferred Bible by default, though you can change the displayed version from the dropdown.
The Document Toolbar
The document toolbar allows you to switch between the different documents within your homily.
- Outline: Click the outline menu icon to show an outline of your main headings.
- Edit: Select the edit tab to add content to your homily document.
- Text: Display a text-only view of your homily.
- Slides: Show all of the slides in your homily document.
- Handout: View your handout. If you have fill-in-the-blank words, you can show or hide answers in your handout. You can print this document from the Publish menu as shown below.
- Question: View your question document. You can print this document from the Publish menu as shown below.
Style and Edit Slides
To change the styling or the wording for any generated slide, right-click the slide and choose Edit.
Note: You can toggle the visibility of slides from the panel menu (click the panel menu icon and enable/disable Show slides).
To change the text displayed on the slide, make changes in the content panel on the left and view your changes live on the right.
Note: You can add animations and other presentation features after exporting your homily to presentation software like Proclaim or Powerpoint.
To change the styling of your slide, click Find Media and filter and search to locate an appropriate background. Select it and choose Update Sermon.
Did you know? You can apply your background style to all slides in your homily by right[clicking the altered slide and choosing Apply Style to All Slides.
Export your Homily
Homily Builder provides a variety of export options.
- Share: Make your homily document public or share it with a group (you can enable group collaboration to allow others in your group to edit the document). Learn more about working with documents.
- Preach: Enter preaching mode to view a speaker-friendly version of your homily document. Learn more about preaching mode.
Publish: View several options to export your homily:
- Send to Faithlife Proclaim exports your homily slides to Faithlife Proclaim. (Proclaim must be installed on your computer, requires a separate software license.)
- Post to Faithlife Sermons uploads your homily text, handout, and question document to Faithlife Sermons.
- Export to PowerPoint sends your homily slides to Microsoft PowerPoint.
- Print / Export opens a dialog allowing you to print your homily text, copy it to your clipboard, or save it in a variety of file formats, including PDF, HTML, or Word.
- Print: You can print your homily by clicking the print icon (icon) located in between the Publish button and int Information Panel icon.
Note: When you click Print/Export from the panel menu (icon), Verbum open the Publish dialog.