Meditation Method for Sunday Gospel

Arranged by Fr. Jacob Bertrand

The Sunday Gospel is no mere reading from just any book it is from the inspired Word of  God as determined by the Spirit filled Church. Nor is it from just any book in the bible it is from the very heart of the scriptures of which recount the life of our Risen Lord. Nor is it just any ordinary selection from the four accounts of Jesus’ life it is an ordered and discerned selection contained within the rhythm of the Church’s life where she is nourished by the Holy Mass from which the Church’s life flows and finds its consummation. Thus, there can be no more important reading on a weekly basis to spend time meditating on than the Sunday Gospel. In order to assist in taking time to meditate I propose to you a simple method designed to engage your heart and the Spirit in coming to be better disposed to receive the grace of God during your Sunday worship.

Prayer to prepare:

All: Father, I can’t understand your Word without your grace, I acknowledge my weakness so your power can reach perfection in me. Send your Holy Spirit to remind, teach, and guide me to the Truth. And may I share, as soon as possible, whatever you teach me. Amen.

Step 1

Always begin by inviting the Holy Spirit concretely to assist you with your prayer. Literally speak to the Spirit in your own words asking Him to help you know what He wants to speak to you through His word.

Step 2

Read the Gospel once all the way through at a slow pace asking:

Holy Spirit what do you want to reveal to me? What do you want to teach me? What words or phrases do you want me to reflect on more?

After reading the Gospel take note of what your mind considered, that is, whatever line, phrase, or image stuck out underline it. Don’t try to interpret or understand why it stood out, just underline it. Share with a small group what stuck out.

Then observe holy silence for a few minutes.

Step 3 
Have another person (if in a group) read the Gospel a second time. Read slowly and deliberately. If you are not reading close your eyes and use only your ears to listen. Asking the following question:

Holy Spirit how do these words apply to my current life situation? How will they inspire me to become holier? Why are they important for me to reflect on?

Share with a small group why you think those particular phrases are important and how they apply to your current life situation.

Then observe holy silence for a few minutes.

Step 4 (For when you have longer time and want to go a little deeper.)

First enter into the scene more intently. These questions are not meant to be answered by studying the text but by your impressions.

What sounds do you hear? Where is the scene taking place? A town? A pathway? By the sea? What animals might be around making noises in the background? What is the weather like? What time of day is it?

Now look more closely at the Gospel reading and determine all of those who are in this particular scene of the Gospel (i.e. Jesus, disciples, Pharisees, scribes, someone who was healed, etc.). Then imagine you are that person as the scene unfolds.

What are this person’s thoughts? How are they feeling? What do they think about Jesus? What do they feel towards the other people in the scene? Why do they say what they say? Why do they do what they do?

Take time thinking about each relationship going on in the scene individually. Jesus to the Apostles, Jesus to the crowd, Jesus to the person He’s interacting with so on and so forth.

You can take as long as you want to go through these thoughts. Have a journal handy and write down whatever you feel like writing down.