English TranscriptBetty Sue Flowers: I think most lay people really don’t understand Lectio Divina. Well, first of all, it’s a Latin term and they may not understand it. But secondly, you think of reading Scripture – I’m certainly thinking of the Protestant tradition here – reading Scripture, you try to figure it out, which is different, I think, from dwelling in it. You’re really talking about something utterly different.
Fr. Thomas: Yes, dwelling is really, the Lectio Divina, at least as it was done for centuries in monasteries was not so much a reading as a listening to the word. They even said it out loud in the early days. They were hearing it. And they would mull over a single text for weeks, maybe. Or, in the case of the Middle Ages, they might just get a book for Lent that might just be the Book of Isaiah. They wouldn’t get the whole Scripture. And so, they were expected to read that one book for maybe a year or so. You would certainly read the text, but you wouldn’t know the other parts of Scripture until next year. You’d have another book, and so on. So, you’d have to live a long time to read them all at that rate, I suppose. And just how well everyone understood the Latin is a little problematic. So, what Lectio Divina really is, is a conversation with the Holy Spirit, based on the text.