This year we have been encouraged by Pope Francis and The Catholic Bishops of England and Wales to observe 2020 as the Year of the Word. This means thinking of ways in which we can become more familiar with passages of the Bible and using Scripture in our prayer life more.
Where to Begin
As much as the launch of this year can bring an exciting boost in our knowledge and relationship with Christ by reading and praying with Scripture more frequently, it can seem daunting holding a big book and wonder where to begin. Some good advice is to read and pray with Matthew’s Gospel as that is the Gospel we will be hearing throughout the year. Find times during the week that are quiet (not easy I know, but try) and read small parts of the Bible at a time, or even take the Mass sheet home with you.
How to Pray the Bible
There is a beautiful form of praying with Scripture called ‘Lectio Divina’ meaning ‘Sacred or Divine Reading’. This is a structured form of prayer that people can do on their own – it involves; reading a Bible passage, meditation, prayer and then contemplation.
There are some great guides on the technique of Lectio Divina that can be found on You Tube. If you wish to have a quick fire and accessible instruction then look up ‘Fr. Josh How to pray the Bible’. If you wish something a little more thorough then look for the video sessions by Fr. Mark Toups.
There are plenty more that you may find more helpful however these two are amongst the best. You will see how much God has to say to you when using Scripture in this way.
Some Useful Resources
The above guides are just intended to get you started on your journey. Click the ‘God Who Speaks’ logo to go to the official website, which has recently been refreshed and expanded to include a vast amount of quality resources to guide you on your ‘Year of the Word’ journey.
Official Prayer for the
Year of the Word
Living God, you walk alongside of us
and speak to us through the Scriptures.
Your Son Jesus Christ listens to our hopes and fears
and show us how to live for one another.
Send us the Holy Spirit to open our minds and hearts
so that we may be your witnesses throughout the world.
Our Lady of the Annunciation, pray for us.
St. Matthew, pray for us
St. Jerome, pray for us