June 19, 2014

And the Word Became Text

Michael Casey OSCO, author of the definitive work on Lectio Devina titled "Sacred Reading", wrote a paper for the Benedictine Oblates World Congress which took place in Rome during October 2013. In it he describes the heart of Lectio...

We are, perhaps, familiar with the hodie of the liturgy. Today Christ is born. Today Christ is risen. Today Christ ascends into heaven. In our liturgical celebrations we are not simply commemorating past saving events, but we are actualising them, activating them, making them present and accessible today. We are entering into the process of salvation. The timeless economy of salvation is being realised for our benefit today.
The practice of lectio divina is a prolongation of the reception of the Word proclaimed in liturgy. In a way similar to the liturgy, when we receive God’s Word in lectio, it is as though God were speaking directly to us today. It is not merely an inspiring word from the past that still has the power to touch us, to guide us and to move us to good living. It is God’s unique and empowering Word addressed to us at this moment and in this situation in which we find ourselves. This is more than mere reading; God is at work in us. The Holy Spirit is as active in our reception of the inspired Word as in its original composition. This is why Saint Jerome wrote, “We cannot arrive at an understanding of Scripture without the aid of the Holy Spirit who inspired it.”

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