4 Mary of Bethlehem
Allow your body and mind to slow down. Become aware of the presence of God.
Light the candle which symbolises the light of Christ.
Hope: To deepen my faith in God who has become human in Jesus.
Begin with a brief conversation with God asking to be open for the grace which you hope for during this retreat.
Like Mary of Bethlehem we bring Jesus to birth in the hearts of others. We are ready to do so in the most unlikely and inhospitable of places. In an age of consumerism, we make do with simple comforts.
Luke 2:1-20 | The Birth of Jesus at Bethlem
In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. All went to their own towns to be registered. Joseph also went from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the city of David called Bethlehem, because he was descended from the house and family of David. He went to be registered with Mary, to whom he was engaged and who was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for her to deliver her child. And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in bands of cloth, and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.
First Exercise, Lectio: What does the text tell me?
Read the Scripture passage slowly, at least twice.
If a word or phrase or idea seems important, take note of it.
Second Exercise, Meditatio: What do I say to God in light of the text?
Allow the important word, phrase or idea to enter your thoughts.
Be with the words, recognising that you are in God’s presence.
Allow the Holy Spirit to lead your awareness of the words.
Third Exercise, Oratio: Prayer
Let your heart speak to God.
Use the words of the Scripture passage or the thoughts that emerged during your reflection on them.
Fourth Exercise, Contemplatio: Contemplate in silence and quiet.
Let go of words or thoughts and allow yourself to rest in the presence of God
in simple and wordless contemplation.
Listen to God, open your mind and heart to the influence of God.
Thoughts to Ponder:
How can I make room for God in my life?
Thank God for this time of reflection.
Thank God for the grace that you have received.
thank you for this time
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