Step #1: Lectio / Read
Click the link below or open your Bible to the passage and read through the reading at least once, paying attention to what is happening in the text.
Step #2: Meditatio / Meditate
Use the following meditation to help you reflect more deeply on the Scripture (you may want to read the passage again).
Tonight some of us will go to the Easter Vigil Mass. This Mass is like no other Mass you will attend all year. There are eight readings before the Gospel. Yeah, you heard that right, EIGHT! Now a part of you, like me, might be thinking, “Wow that seems a bit overkill.” However, that just shows on our part a lack of understanding of the beauty of this Liturgy. We have to remember that Christ’s death on the Cross is the fulfillment of a promise the Father made after the Fall of Adam and Eve. The story of God’s people waiting for Christ is documented throughout all of the Old Testament. In the Church, we call this Salvation History, the story of how God saved humanity after original sin. Knowing that, it becomes clear that this Liturgy is more than just celebrating the Resurrection of Christ; it is about all that God has done since the creation of the world and moving on through Abraham, Moses and then the prophets, to prepare humanity for this moment.
I think there is a tendency during Holy Week to focus on the passion of Christ. We think about how He died for our sins and we think about His sacrifice and how He suffered for us, which is good and obviously important. After all, this is the truth of the terrible, yet beautiful sacrifice Christ made for us. However, without the resurrection, none of that matters. In fact, without the resurrection, nothing matters. Our faith would mean nothing if Christ never rose from the dead, because if He had not risen from the dead like He said He would, then He would be a liar and therefore, not God. Christ rising from the dead is the single most important moment in all of human history, not only because this is the fulfillment of the Father’s promises to us, but He also proves, undeniably once and for all, that He is Lord over all, even sin and death. Today Christ is born to new life, and we have that same opportunity as well to commit ourselves anew to a life with Christ. Christ is more powerful than death itself; so why do we ever think that He cannot help us overcome any hurt, struggle or sin in our own life. Tonight commit yourself to Christ in a new way, and He will raise you to new life as well.
Step #3: Oratio / Pray
These questions are to be used to talk to God; have a conversation with the Lord about these questions and what is going on in your heart as you pray today.
Do you believe that God wants to raise you from the grave of sin and pain to new life with Him? How can you live and believe that more?
How can tonight be different? How can you let this night, this Mass change your life?
How can you trust God more today?
Step #4: Contemplatio / Contemplate
In this step, you listen. Stop talking, let God speak to your heart. You may repeat one of these short phrases to focus your mind on the Lord.
"Thank you for dying for me."
"Thank you for rising for me."
"Thank you for loving me."
Step #5: Actio / Act
In light of today's reading and your time spent in prayer with the Lord, what concrete action or actions will you take to let this encounter with the Lord bear fruit in you today?
If at all possible, go to Mass tonight. Dive into the beauty of this Mass and this Holy Night. If you cannot go to Mass, then spend some time going through all the readings and take a walk with the Church through Salvation History.
Smartphone Lock Screen
The following image is here for you to save and use as a background or lock screen on your smartphone or device to help you carry today's Lectio Divina with you the rest of the day.
Today's prayer was prepared by Jason Liuzzi, a middle school religion teacher at St. John the Evangelist School in St John, IN.
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