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Date of Award

9-8-1999

Document Type

Graduate Paper

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Theology

Department

School of Theology • Seminary

First Advisor

Columba A. Stewart OSB

Abstract

The Scriptures as the word of God are at the heart of monastic life. From the dawn of the monastic movement in the Christian tradition, the word of God has been the source of nourishment and sustenance of the vocation to monastic life. The art by which the word of God is appropriated and assimilated in order to nourish and sustain a monastic's vocation is lectio divina.

In order to draw out the meaning of lectio divina, this paper looks at the various verbs used with the term lectio for the Rule of St. Benedict. It then describes the rhythm or process that is involved in its practice. For lectio divina to meet its desired goal, appropriate texts must be used and faithfulness to the practice must be maintained. This paper explores the appropriate texts to be used, the practice and the fruitfulness of lectio divina. It highlights the primacy of the Scriptures and underscores the importance of the ambience and faithfulness to the practice.

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