Monday, August 31, 2009

Lectio Divina

Earlier this month I attended a retreat at the St. Meinrad Archabbey concerning the ancient practice of lectio divina. The conferences were effectively led by a young monk named Matthew Mattingly, OSB. It was a special time for reflection and assessment. I had attempted to practice the sacred reading before but had failed in part because I did not understand that it is not accomplished by technique. Below are several ideas Bro. Mattingly left with the participants that I thought were helpful:
  1. Lectio Divina (LD) trains us to see the world as God sees the world.
  2. LD must be part of a larger prayer life, both corporate and personal, as well as a larger plan (re: rule) toward Christian spirituality.
  3. Christian spirituality demands a complete way of life, a life which includes prayer, the Word, and the liturgy, where the day can be sanctified by prayer, and where time is sanctified within the context of the liturgical year.
  4. In LD we read slowly and eventually make the scripture our own.
  5. LD makes the Bible's story our story.
  6. LD is not just found in the moment we read, but later on when we internalize what we have been reading, when we mull and meditate on the Word.
  7. In the practice of LD we do not look for technique.
If you would like to learn more about St. Meinrad's, I have included below a video they produced: