The meditative prayer method ‘Lectio Divina’ is often associated with monastic tradition: the Carmelites frequently used it. However, Christians have been encouraged to practice the Holy Reading since the Second Vatican Council, without having to have joined religious orders. Every Christian can use this method individually, but we can also pray Lectio Divina with a group.
Christians can meet in discussion groups specifically dedicated to discussing the Holy Scriptures and praying Lectio Divina, but it can also be part of a more general Pastoral meeting. You can pray Divine Reading with your families, your children, your friends, your spouse, etc. There are no prerequisites to sharing this moment of prayer with people, other than a shared desire to invite God into your hearts.
However, to ensure the quality of the meeting, be prepared, and plan enough time for everyone to take part (the more people there are, the more time you will need). Avoid meeting in large groups, try to limit the number of people involved to 10, or it might get complicated.
If the group meeting is formal (ex. discussion groups), the group leader or the organization selects the text ahead of time. You can prepare a few notes and comments to include in the meditation phase. You can also choose a prayer related to the Scripture passage for the Oratio phase.
These are a few suggestions to help you participate, however, make sure you don’t distract other people, or stray from the topic. Your participation in group discussions is meant to help lead people into meditation and enlightenment.
The Holy Reading begins by making the sign of the cross, an opening prayer or chant, and a prayer of invocation to the Holy Spirit to guide everyone during the reading and meditation phase.
Then you can start the four steps of Lectio Divina:
Lectio: we read The Scripture passage at least three times, two times aloud. Ideally, different speakers take turns reading it each time. Everyone shares a moment of silence to read and to reflect quietly on the passage.
Meditatio: People can use this phase to share their feelings and their comments on the Biblical passage. Everyone has their turn to express themselves and to ask their questions: you can tell others what phrase or word touched your heart. It is best if everyone starts by sharing their own feelings instead of immediately bouncing off each other’s ideas. You can start a deeper conversation in a second round.
Oratio and Contemplatio: the two first steps are closed with a collective prayer and a shared moment of silence, during which everyone can continue praying to God and offer our hearts to Him in adoration. You can say the ‘Our Father’ prayer to finish the session.
Hozana is a social network designed to unite you with your Christian brothers and sisters. We understand the power of community prayer, which is why you can join multiple spiritual programs and pray along with other Christians around the world!