Hermeneutics is the study of how (usually religious) texts are interpreted. Most commonly, hermeneutics is the study of the bible by people who are in seminary, or are studying to become a pastor.
In hermeneutics, the studier looks at word meanings, verbal connotations, sentence structure, tone, mood, translations, etc. to try and determine the intended meaning of the text he or she is studying.
It is important for leaders of the faith to participate in this kind of study so that they can have a handle on what a particular passage in scripture means so that he/she can interpret it for his/her parishoners.