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).
I love being one of the first people to hear exciting news. I become overjoyed because I know something special and cannot wait to share it with anyone and everyone. My senior year of high school, I remember celebrating with friends as college acceptance letters started rolling in. My senior year of college, I remember rejoicing with friends who were landing their dream job or got into a very competitive graduate school program. Now, as an adult, I have the privilege to share in my friends’ joy as they become engaged, married, or pregnant.
In today’s Gospel, Mary Magdalene run to share some crazy news with Peter and John - Jesus is no longer in the tomb, and she has no idea where they took Him. I imagine John and Peter then running like little kids, racing down the stairs on Christmas morning to see what Santa brought them, but instead of finding a plethora of presents, they find an empty tomb.
Today we celebrate the feast of St. John the Apostle, also known as St. John the Beloved, and what a privilege John has in today’s Gospel - not only to be one of the first at the empty tomb but also to see that empty tomb and believe (cf. John 20:8). While the rest of the world might not yet understand what has happened, St. John, the beloved Apostle, knows through faith the joyous and special event that has taken place at this empty tomb - the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
I think as we grow older, the world loses its wonder. We see the good, the bad, and the ugly, and sometimes it’s hard not to give up hope in our world. However, we must continue to remember that we have a Savior who entered the darkness of our world during the middle of winter to bring us light. That news is the good news which should leave us so overjoyed that we cannot help but share it with everyone we encounter. My hope is that we never lose our wonder at the miracle of Christ’s Incarnation and His Resurrection and the love the Father has for each one of us. May we, like St. John the Beloved, find ourselves chasing after Christ with all our heart and come to know our identity as Christ’s beloved.
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.
What is the most exciting news you recently heard?
Who do you share good news with?
What is currently giving you hope in the midst of winter?
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.
"I see and believe."
"I am beloved."
"Share the Good News."
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?
Share the joy of Christmas and the joy of the Lord with someone you encounter today, whether a family member, friend, or stranger.
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 Maggie Overbeck, Assistant Director of Youth Ministry at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Huntley, IL. If you have anything you'd like our team to pray for, please go to the page of our website called "Prayers" and let us know how we can pray for you today.