Saturday, September 6, 2014

What is Lectio Divina?

Painting:  Friedrich Adolf Hornemann Lesender, Mönch, in US public domain due to age  {{PD-1923}

Just what IS Lectio Divina?  Is it something I can practice in my ordinary daily life?

The answer to the second question is "yes." The answer to the first can be found in this series of archived posts, now arranged in chronological order. These were originally compiled as our third and last "monastic day." I find it helpful to re-visit them, and for that reason am glad they're now linked together so I can easily get to them in sequence. 

To begin the sequence, click on the following link, which will lead to another post within this blog.  At the end of that post, click on the link provided.... and on and on.

I pray that we will each encounter, more deeply, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

To begin "A Day of Lectio," click this line

Painting: František Dvořák, in US public domain due to age {{PD-1923}}


  1. Thank you for posting these monastic days, Nancy. I'm about halfway through the second day and it's like being a part of the cloistered life for a short while. I love the quotes you chose from A Right to Be Merry - especially, the one about the vegetables passing themselves off as potatoes. Isn't that funny?!! I laughed out loud through reading that book - I think I would have loved to know Mother Mary Francis. When I read about the Poor Clares' talent for sleeping, I immediately thought I would have made a great Poor Clare ;-)

    I'm glad you're re-posting this series, Nancy, as I have to admit to a silly prejudice against Lectio Divina. Our last bishop promoted this form of prayer with free prayer books every Christmas and Easter. I shied away from them because the bishop was very modernist and his sacramental programs were not based on orthodox teachings. Sometimes, I'm over-cautious. I'm looking forward to learning more. :-)

    1. Vicky, you and I are definitely two-of-a-kind, of-one-mind-sorts of people! I giggled all the way through a Right to be Merry the first time I read it too, in my case over 20 years ago. And here's a confession: the book was recommended to me in a letter from a nun, and along with the recommendation, I was given Mother Mary Francis' address and the suggestion that I write to her about the Cloistered Heart idea! So I did, and we then maintained a lovely little correspondence for a few years. As you can imagine, she was a delightful pen-pal!!!! Mother was extremely encouraging and generous with input and feedback on the cloistered heart idea. And she was thoroughly orthodox, all the way down the line.

      I was very reluctant to tackle the idea of Lectio Divina here, for the same kind of reasons you mention. I practiced it for many years without ever knowing that what I was doing had a "name." I simply called it praying with scripture. It wasn't until I found some videos (all quite brief - around 2 minutes each) by people I trust to be orthodox... Jeff Cavins, Father John Bartunek, Dr.Tim Gray... that I felt drawn to share what THEY said on the topic. I tend toward the over cautious side also, and because I share on spiritual topics, I take as a personal motto some words from the medical hypocratic oath: "First, do no harm."

      And dear Mother Mary Francis was the very same way :) !

      Thank you, friend!


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