I have never mentioned it in these posts, but most of the time I do my lectio divina prayer time in preparation for this article in front of the Blessed Sacrament. I have a regular hour on Monday nights and it is the perfect time to sit in quiet contemplation with the Word.
My parish’s Adoration Chapel is beautiful, and the architecture of it is very inviting for prayer and time with our Lord. Above our gorgeous monstrance hangs a large crucifix. This past Monday while I was reading the upcoming Sunday Gospel and writing out my thoughts, my eyes kept gazing upon the crucifix. It was pretty powerful to be contemplating both the crucifix in front of me as well as the Blessed Sacrament while reading a short account of the crucifixion. It was a great reminder of the pain and suffering Jesus went through for us.
This coming Sunday is the Feast of Christ the King. It is also my parish’s patronal feast day, so it is a big deal in my parish. I will be on retreat this weekend so will not be at my home parish for Mass, I will miss the extra musical instruments and the regal sound they bring to the music. The next time I share a lectio divina article it will be the liturgical new year. So I wish you a happy Feast of Christ the King and a good start to your Advent.
To follow along with me on this lectio divina prayer time, you will want to have the upcoming Sunday Gospel reading for November 20 handy. If you need to review the steps of lectio divina you can find a quick outline from St. Meinrad Archabbey. Remember to read the Gospel passage at the start of each of the four sections below (the ones that start with an “R” word).
What caught my attention:
“Jeered at him.”
REFLECT: What is God saying to you?
Like I said in my introduction, I found myself continually contemplating the crucifix while I was working on this in the adoration chapel. It was hard not to do. At the same time the hymn “Jesus, remember me” kept going through my head.* It’s such a simple tune, the words are taken directly from this Gospel passage and they are the only words. As a musician I played/sang this tune many times; I find it mesmerizing. The saying, “When you sing, you pray twice” is definitely true with that hymn.
But what I found particularly fascinating about this passage was the words of the Good Thief (traditionally known as St. Dismas) that are so incredibly insightful. How is it that when everyone else thinks that this is the end, that Jesus’ death means that everything is over, this man being crucified for his criminal acts has the wisdom to know that Jesus has done nothing criminal and that he will come into his kingdom. He knows that Jesus is King!! I pray that I can have that much trust and faith.
RESPOND: What do you want to say to God?
Dear Jesus, you are my Lord and my King. Thank you for suffering for me and my sins. I pray that my trust and faith in you is enough. Please help me to increase my faith. Jesus, remember me.
Spend some time in silence after your fourth reading of the passage.
Share in the comments, what do you feel God is saying to you in this passage? How would you respond to him? If you use Instagram, be sure to follow Catholic Sistas there and participate in the lectio divina discussion every Friday.
*If you are unfamiliar with the hymn “Jesus, remember me” here is a beautiful version of it on YouTube.
Kerri Baunach is a Catholic wife and mother of three boys (plus three in heaven). She and her family live in beautiful central Kentucky where she is active in her church, a member of Cursillo, and a Benedictine Oblate. Kerri often writes on her Catholic faith, pregnancy loss, her kids, and pro-life issues. Kerri is a former music librarian (16 years) now stay-at-home mom, was a musician for over 20 years, loves taking her kids to the library (and loves that they love it), is passionately pro-life, can’t cook, and has lived in six states. In additional to writing at Catholic Sistas you can also find Kerri on her own blog at Journal of a Nobody.