What is the distinction and interplay between Lectio Divina and Centering Prayer?

Lectio Divina Centering Prayer
Participatory Receptive
Active Passive
More Concentrative More Receptive
Word of Scripture has content Sacred Word has no conceptual content except intentionality
Use thoughts, images, and insights Let go of thoughts, images, insights
Stresses our relationship w/God Stresses ones’ intimacy with God
Supports the motivation for the practice of Centering Prayer Supports the motivation for practice of Lectio Divina.
Rest comes and goes; is not permanent Rest sustained by use of sacred word
Focuses on the terms of the relationship Helps us overcome the obstacles to living the terms of the relationship
Group or private Group or private



Centering Prayer and Lectio Divina are two distinct prayer forms.  If used together there is always a break between these two ways of praying.  It is helpful to have a period of Centering Prayer before a period of Lectio Divina if the group is familiar with both kinds of prayer.

Gift of Centering Prayer to Lectio Divina

There are three obstacles to the journey; over conceptualization, hyperactivity and over dependence on self.  Centering Prayer helps us get beyond these obstacles and settle into the quiet as we listen to the scriptures, Lectio Divina, in a contemplative manner.  Centering Prayer opens us to new thoughts, new action and a deeper dependence on God.

Gift of Lectio Divina to Centering Prayer

Lectio Divina, the praying of Sacred Scripture, deepens our personal relationship with God.

It calls us to rest in God’s transforming presence.  Lectio Divina teaches us who God is and who we are.