Lectio Divina (“Divine Reading”)

Lectio Divina is a form of devotional reading of scripture used for centuries, especially among Christians who couldn’t read, but instead memorized key passages of scripture.

Choose a scripture, and practice these five steps:

  1. Silencio – quietly prepare your heart. Release the chaos around yourself and welcome God’s presence.

  2. Lectio – read the scripture you’ve chosen. Read it aloud. Read slowly. If a particular phrase or word draws your attention, pause and dwell on that phrase.

  3. Meditatio – meditate. Read the scripture again, out loud, and listen as you read. Is God speaking to you within this text? Reflect on the words, especially any that stick out.

  4. Oratio – prayer and response. Read the scripture again, but this time turn it into a prayer. Talk to God about this passage: what you are feeling about it, what you are feeling about yourself, anything else that comes to mind.

  5. Contemplatio – contemplate and rest. Allow the words you’ve spoken to sink into you. Consider how you might remind yourself of this passage throughout the day.

Families with young children: use a children’s Bible and pick out a story together. Ask questions about the story. Share what you think about the story. Invite them to pray to God about this story. Practice a short time of silence with them, then close in a final prayer together.