In the spirituality of the desert fathers and mothers, the Benedictine monk, John Main, discovered a tradition of contemplative prayer he believed could re-energise the Church in prayer and restore its capacity to communicate a sense of wonder at the heart of creation. In his teachings on prayer, the contemplative power of early Christianity, which for centuries has been diverted to dogmatic issues and institutional structures, is once again released.
The contemplative experience is simply pure attention to God in the present moment. A way of prayer that is totally simple, it invites you to set aside your own thoughts, feelings and perceptions and to let God be God. In silent contemplation, relating to God becomes more than thought, dialogue or contractualy bargaining. Instead of questioning, we awaken to the basic relationship of life which determines all other relationships, with others and with ourselves. In a busy and frenetic world, it enables us to discover redemptive, healing silence.
In the Celtic way of prayer, the divine glory was intertwined with the ordinariness of everyday events like the patterns on carvings and in illuminated Gospels.
The modern prayers in this book beautifully recapture that tradition. They were composed in a small parish in the north of England to help individuals and groups rediscover the use of life's simple rhythms in their worship of the Eternal Presence.
Here are prayers for individual devotions and for corporate worship, as well as for quiet days and retreats.
Wooden beads plus a metal celtic cross that can be held in the hand as an aid to prayer. Rob Davies, who has lost his sight and puts these together with the help of his wife, finds that holding the cross and using the individual beads helps him to keep praying. Others have also found them very helpful and we commend them. The pack contains suggestions as to how the beads might best be used, showing how each bead can be used to pray through the Midday Office from Celtic Daily Prayer. Colours may vary.
A small number of packs containing beads in the form of a string rather than a loop are available on request. Please email the office.
In this exhilarating book, John Pritchard reclaims the narrative power of the Gospels by retelling well-known stories in vivid, imaginative language, and showing us how our own experiences fit into the Christian story and can be transformed by it.
He takes key narrative like the visit of Mary to Elizabeth, the parable of the rich fool, and the last supper and helps us to be part of them. We are given the opportunity to see the people involved more clearly, not least of all Jesus himself – and so consider whether we might live our own lives a little differently.
An ideal resource for anyone concerned to communicate the Christian faith in a lively, contemporary style, Living the Gospel Stories Today will prove no less helpful as an aid to personal meditation and group discussion.