Fall Prayer Series – Praying with Poetry, Art and Music

This week was the second session at the University of St. Thomas of the Fall Prayer Series I’m offering this Fall at both UST and at St. Hubert’s in Chanhassen. As I said last week, the series is designed to introduce participants to different prayer forms and styles (although even those with some familiarity and experience with the particular styles and forms of prayer can benefit from hearing something they have heard before in a different way).

This week, we focused on praying with poetry, art and music, with the aim of deepening our affective experience of God’s love for us. I talked during the session about why poetry, art and music can be useful elements of our prayer and suggested some ways of using them in our prayer. The participants then spent some time praying with a poem I selected for them (Paul Mariani’s, I Did Say Yes), after which participants shared in small groups about their prayer experience.

You can access a podcast of the talk I gave here. (The podcast runs for 15:37, and ends at the point at which participants engaged in their silent prayer.) At the end of the session, I distributed a handout with suggestions for their prayer during this week.