I help out with the local Secular Franciscan fraternity that meets here at St. Anne’s.
Recently, someone from their regional leadership emailed some materials to us about praying with scriptures in the Franciscan tradition, wanting us to encourage our local members to utilize this type of prayer.
Consequently, I made up a little handout, adapting material from something I have given out previously at our residents’ Bible study. It is a simple way of prayer which I learned during my college years and which I still use.
To me, it is so important just to sit and take time to listen to Jesus speaking to us in the gospels.
I thought I would take this opportunity to encourage readers to do so and to offer some helpful, simple steps (please see below).
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Pick out a Scripture passage (the gospel of the day is a good choice.)
Pray to the Holy Spirit for guidance. It is difficult to launch into prayer from the midst of a flurry of distracting occupations so take a minute – call to mind that Jesus is with you (in the Blessed Sacrament/in your heart).
Read a small section of scripture that you’ve chosen slowly and prayerfully.
Who is pictured here? What are they doing? What does it mean to me? How do they feel/what would it be like?
Imagine what it would be like to be there. What would you do? How would you feel?
Conversation: Begin to talk slowly to Christ, telling Him of your love for Him, your desire to serve Him, your willingness to do anything for Him. Adore Christ in the scene of the day’s meditation; express your love for Him; thank Him for past gifts; ask Him for new favors in the future; When the conversation begins to falter, return briefly to the reading to get new thoughts for additional conversation with Christ.
This is entirely optional; but it may be of great value in making progress in prayer. Thank God for the graces received during the time of prayer now coming to a conclusion. Then, very briefly, one might examine his failings during the period, and promise to get rid of these in the future. This determination to hold better conversation with Christ gives a strong determination to make further strides along the road of prayer.