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Lectio Matters: Before the Burning Bush (The Matters Series) Paperback – 1 Feb 2013


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About the Author

Mary Margaret Funk is a Benedictine nun of Our Lady of Grace Monastery, Beech Grove, Indiana. From 1994 through 2004, she served as executive director of Monastic Interreligious Dialogue, which fosters dialogue among monastics of the world's religions. In addition to the volumes of the Matters Series, she is the author of Islam Is: An Experience of Dialogue and Devotion and Into the Depths: A Journey of Loss and Vocation.

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Amazon.com: HASH(0x9a2c0c00) out of 5 stars 15 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9a4618f4) out of 5 stars Scripture "study" with a plus 16 Jan. 2011
By Jeff Godecker - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Lectio is an ancient way (method) of praying the Scripture and also praying about personal experience. It's about your life and God speaking to your life in the text or in the experience. Lectio engages the reader with all the dimensions of a text: literal meaning, symbolic meaning,moral meaning and allows God to speak as we quietly listen(sometimes called the mystical dimension). The text chosen by the reader has a power which helps a person to listen and respond to God's voice within the text as it relates to the study, meditation, and life of the reader.It requires quiet,time and a prayerful attitude.

Sister Mary Margaret's book is excellent. Besides describing the process, it combines Sister's personal life and everyday practice with the history and the theory of Lectio. Her choice of a text for this book is the Book of Jonah.

Sister suggests "sustained lectio." Often Lectio is seen as taking a text, meditating on it, praying about it and moving on to the next text. Her suggestion is that the reader take a text that they are attracted to for some reason and stay with the text for a longer period of days,weeks and maybe even months. The lectio she proposes also expands into art,music,talking with others about the text and many more opportunities to deepen the text.

This idea has helped me in my personal life and in my ministry of preaching and teaching. As I have reflected on it, it is somewhat arrogant to believe that one can sit down with a text and exhaust it in five minutes or a half hour. At the time I read the book, I was considering Romans 8, a rather complex chapter and one that I was not particularly fond of for a variety of reasons. I stayed with the text for two weeks and found more power in the text for my own life than if I would have taken my usual twenty minutes. THe longer period gave me deeper insight and often deepened my prayer for that day. Sister suggests staying with the text until you know it's time to move on.

Sister Mary Margaret is a member of a Benedictine Monastery in Indianapolis, Indiana. Her practice validates what she says in the book. She describes her practice very personnally. But some may wonder whether you can do what she says in a busy or too busy life. As a busy person myself I know that I will unlikely achieve the consistency or the amount of time I need to plunge into a text on an everyday basis. But the beauty of the method does not depend on being in a monastery. You do it as you are able to do it within the circumstances of your own life. Or as someone once said, "Pray as you can not as you can't. In my life sustained lectio will happen as it can happen. My reading of this book and my own chosen scripture text was yet another reminder of the power of the Scripture.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b74f318) out of 5 stars Truth is difficult but very refreshing! 30 Jan. 2012
By Elizabeth G. Melillo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
In previous reviews of Mary Margaret Funk's books, I have expounded on how they are the best 'capsule course' in ascetic theology one could imagine. Though Lectio Matters indeed has great value in itself, I would recommend first reading (and most definitely, slowly, 'praying through!) "Thoughts Matter" and "Tools Matter," before going through this brief book over a period of months at a minimum. The excellence of presentation, and depth of insight and wisdom, in all three works requires extended reflection and integration into one's own life to be appreciated - a life-long task, but one must at least 'put one's hand to the plough' first, or one may miss the truths presented.

Lectio Matters is a fascinating presentation of the author's own experience with the Benedictine tradition of lectio divina, based on her extended immersion in the Book of Jonah. It is deeply impressive on many levels, not only underlining the element of discipline, discernment, and openness to grace which this practise requires, but unflinchingly honest in the author's presentation of her own distractions and struggles.

One element which I found especially praise-worthy is the utter honesty, including in relation to areas which must lead to criticism from other religious and a wider readership. For example, I applaud Sr Meg's total candour about how popular attitudes in psychology can be at odds with the gospel.

I would highly recommend Lectio Matters to all pursuing a life of prayer, though underlining that the concepts in previous works are important to fully understanding this one.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9aec5cb4) out of 5 stars Blessings of lectio 14 Aug. 2013
By Karen - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I had a great revelation at Meg Funk's retreat on Lectio Matters. It was a moving experience to work through the process that she lays out in her book, Lectio Matters. Through the process of sustained Lectio Divina I was able to delve into the Holy Scriptures and have them come alive in my live right now, right here. If you are ready to slow down, listen, and be still; this book is for you. It's hard work and well worth the effort. Enjoy.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9a2bb420) out of 5 stars A practice for life 2 Jun. 2013
By Shopper - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I have just finished reading this book. Now I feel I want to read it again. The information has given me a way to incorporate Scriptural prayer as an everyday practice, not just an intellectual exercise. Also, I find that there is so much useful background and general information that I want to read it again in order to move more deeply into the practice. Thank you Sister.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9a379c60) out of 5 stars Really inspiring - a life changing experience 11 Mar. 2014
By Charles Ritter - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This series by the author was recommended by my doctor,it has inspired me to seek out the god I've never known,it has changed my way of thinking and my life for the better
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