Lectio Divina

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was with God.

John 1:1

Monks encounter God in a special way in practice of Lectio Divina. Lectio Divina or "Holy Reading" in English, is a form of meditative prayer where the monk reads scripture and then allows God to speak to him through the text, which we believe to be the word of God. In reading and meditating on the word of God in the scriptures we come more intimately into contact with the nature of God and the desire of God to transmit his love for humanity through his Son Jesus.

Here are the Steps to practice Lectio Divina which are most commonly followed:

Choose a text of the Scriptures that you wish to pray with.

Place yourself in a quiet environment. Calm your anxieties and thoughts, and acknowledge God’s presence. Take deep breaths. Let go…

Offer a prayer to the Holy Spirit for inspiration and guidance: Come Holy Spirit, enlighten my heart and mind to listen to your Word.

1. Lectio Read the text slowly and prayerfully, constantly listening for that word that God has prepared for you. You may want to re-read the same text multiple times to help quiet yourself interiorly and focus on God’s voice. Listen and receive the Word that God speaks to you.

2 .Meditatio When a word or phrase strikes you, stop and rest with it. Repeat the word or phrase to yourself. Allow it to speak to you in a personal way. Allow it to speak to you in a personal way by pondering the word in your heart, reflecting on what it means to you. Memorize it and repeat it to yourself, allowing it to interact with your thoughts, hopes, memories, and desires.

3. Oratio Prayer is your response to God’s word. It begins your dialogue with God. What do you want to say to the Lord in response to the Word spoken to you? Enter into this loving conversation with God.

4. Contemplatio Rest in God’s presence and receive His transforming embrace. Sit still with God, realizing that in this deep and profound relationship, words are not necessary. Be content and at peace with a wordless, quiet rest in God, which brings joy to the heart. Remember that contemplation is not your action or doing, rather it is allowing God to act in you.

5. Finish this moment of rest with a short prayer of thanksgiving. Commit yourself to be a better person and to apply the words of the Scriptures into your life.