International Clergy Accent Modification

Do people have difficulty understanding your sermons or homilies?

Do members of your international clergy need accent modification to communicate more effectively? 

American born and International clergy can learn strategies and techniques to improve their communication skills and the delivery of prayers, sermons, or homilies. International clergy may experience additional challenges with communication due to a foreign accent or lack of confidence speaking in a second or third language. Lynda Katz Wilner has extensive experience conducting group workshops or 1:1 individualized training at your location, in the Baltimore office, or via live online distance training with web cams.

Training includes:

  • Public speaking skills – Gain confidence with your delivery

  • Voice projection – Convey confidence when you speak

  • Accent modification – Learn patterns of American English (Consonant and vowel pronunciation, stress and intonation, rate of speech)

  • Vocabulary development – Increase your understanding and use of English

  • American idioms and slang – Learn to use and understand conversational and casual speech

  • American culture – Appreciate cultural differences and understand appropriate behavior

Use this resource to help pronounce Biblical terms correctly when using them in homilies or sermons. 


Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston, WV

Rabbis in the Baltimore area

Talmudical Academy of Baltimore

Floris United Methodist Church, Herndon, VA

Pallottine Seminary at Green Hill, West Hyattsville, MD


Successfully Speaking has been of genuine assistance to our international clergy as they try to modify their native accents to accommodate the listener in the American pew. The application of phone and computer communication to the learning process has been particularly helpful considering the distances involved in a diocese that covers the entire state of West Virginia. I recommend Successfully Speaking and Lynda Katz Wilner to assist in addressing the needs of your international clergy.
— Rev. Monsignor Frederick P. Annie, V.E. // Episcopal Vicar for Clergy, Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston
I had the blessing to attend the accent modification program with Lynda Katz Wilner. She is very professional and well prepared for each session. I have learned a lot about grammar, idioms, slang, useful phrases and vocabulary. She is really unique in her authority over the pronunciation skills. She also has a wonderful personality and is very easy to communciate with. I highly recommend Lynda if you really wish to develop your communication skills.
— Father Binu Sebastian, International priest, Grafton, WV
This training helped me significantly improve my English. I feel much more comfortable now to speak with and talk to other people - in small talk or in a presentation. I am glad to have all the different worksheets for my personal studies. The TIES method was in a particular way helpful for me. It helped me not just to speak English free and without a manuscript. I think I can use this method even in German.
— Marcus Grabisch, Seminarian, Pallottine Seminary at Green Hill, Maryland
It was very helpful to understand stress patterns and pronunciation, especially “R, “V”, ad “W”, which are very difficult for Indians. I appreciate the training for homily too. I very much appreciated the clarity and skillfulness of Mrs. Lynda. I could improve a lot in my pronunciation and accent. Above all now I can understand other people more. Thanks very much, Mrs. Lynda.
— Father Thomas Kalapurackal // Associate Pastor , St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church, Beckley, WV
This training is so perfect that I do not have a better way of looking at it. There is no room for improvement; it is a well organized and student friendly. I am so pleased with the whole program. It was very useful for me in the field of my profession and life. I found a very sincere and honest approach from the part of the trainer to the improvement my language skills. I can really feel a great change in my language now compared to my language before I began the course. A much appreciated and praiseworthy work. Thank you very much…
— Reverend Joseph Augustine Wierton // West Virginia
I just wanted to briefly remark on the effectiveness of your program. While serving as a priest here in West Virginia I have been in contact with many brother priests who hail from other environs who often bring with them a heavily “non-American” accent. The common struggle between their wanting to be understood and their congregations’ desire to understand has been greatly reduced by your “successfully speaking” course. Most recently, I have noticed a significant positive response from the parishioners here in Parkersburg as Fr. Golla has applied himself and responded to your practical and accessible program. Thank you for your assistance with our clergy here in West Virginia.
— Fr. Eric Hall
Mrs. Lynda’s approach makes the student feel at home. She knew the background and knowledge of the English language and offered the training accordingly. Mrs. Lynda was kind enough to clarify all the doubts.
— Fr. Biju Devassy, Associate Pastor, Beckley, WV
The best for all international priests!
— Fr. Jeeson Venattu Stephan, Catholic Priest, WV
I thank you whole-heartedly for shaping me and molding me in terms of speaking the language better. I receive many good words from people day by day for the improvement that they see in me. It is no doubt that you deserve lots of thanks from me. I pray that the good Lord who gave you these wonderful talents and skills may also help you in all your undertakings.
I have gained a lot through this course, especially in communicating with others, understanding others better, and there is a lot of improvement in “w,” “v,” and “r” sounds. I have even had feedback stating that they can see a lot of improvement. This course has been beneficial to me because of the content and because of the trainer’s expertise, patience, organizational skills and kindness, willingness to help. So I am grateful to you for everything and looking forward to continued sessions with you.
It is true that when I was assigned in a Parish where I had to exercise my sacraments, it felt very difficult to make people understand and I was trying somehow to finish up the work that I was entrusted. But now due to this special course (Successfully Speaking), I am able to stand boldly in communicating well to the Parishners and all the people wherever I go and whomever I meet in day-to-day life. I can genuinely say that this Successfully Speaking English course had a great impact on me in developing myself in communication with others. Thanking you sincerely.
— Father Yesu Golla // St. Francis Xavier, Parkersburg, WV
Having had the pleasure of working with Ms Lynda Katz Wilner for more than three years, I can attest to the spirit of excellence and professionalism she conveys in assisting our international clergy in the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston. Successfully Speaking is now part of the program we utilize to introduce priests arriving from other countries who are assigned to serve the people of West Virginia for a given period of time. The Diocese remains grateful for the priests’ commitment to serve the needs of our people but, often times, their assignments are accompanied by a number of concerns raised by local parishioners who have a difficult time hearing and/or understanding their priests. Lynda has taken time to work with our priests on an individual basis. As well, she consults with others in parish settings in gleaning progress reports for her clients. The results of her dedicated service with our priests have been duly recognized by other priests and parishioners alike. Lynda carefully evaluates our international priests, assesses their particular needs and customizes a program to help them in all facets of their lives in the United States. I am particularly convinced of her methods in that I see our international priests gain confidence for themselves in public speaking engagements. Their learned skills from the Successfully Speaking program assist them in liturgical celebrations and reports received from parishioners indicate genuine improvement. I am pleased to recommend Successfully Speaking to any individual or corporation.
— Rev. Msgr. Anthony Cincinnati, S.T.D., // V.E. Episcopal Vicar for Clergy
It helped to have confidence when I speak and preach with the right word and with right pronunciation.
— Fr. S.A. Dass, St. Anthony Church, WV

Accent Modification Online Course

Lynda Katz Wilner, certified Speech and Language Pathologist, is offering online, individual and group accent modification classes to improve your communication skills and pronunciation of the English language. 

Click here for more information

About Us

Achieve Excellence in Communication

Successfully Speaking is a communication skills consulting company that assists individuals, groups, and organizations achieve excellence in communication. Training is conducted in our Owings Mills, MD office, at your workplace, or by distance training on the internet.