image Visio Divina – Praying with Art

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Visio Divina follows the pattern of Lectio Divina using sacred art. It fosters the practice of sacred seeing. These links show different ways of exploring this spiritual practice.

“Authentic Christian art is that which, through sensible perception, gives the intuition that the Lord is present in his Church, that the events of salvation history give meaning and orientation to our life, that the glory that is promised us already transforms our existence. Sacred art must tend to offer us a visual synthesis of all dimensions of our faith” Pope John Paul II, Veneration of Holy Images, no. 11

Art and Prayer  http://www.prayerwindows.com/art-prayer/

Prayerful images can inspire viewers’ faith as well as their desire to be more creative. This page offers practical suggestions, links to art exhibits and reflections on the subject of art and prayer. This is part of a larger site run by Bob Gilroy SJ Prayer Windows http://www.prayerwindows.com/


Art on the Web http://www.bc.edu/sites/artweb.html

Welcome to Art on the Web! This is the latest, and probably last, iteration of a project that started in the late 1990s, before Google and other internet search engines existed. It began as a way of sharing sites that I had found interesting and bookmarked, and was expanded with additions found by Adeane Bregman and the Bapst Art Library staff. It has been years since the site was fully updated, but the College of Arts and Sciences’ Web Service Center has cleaned up the non-functional links and given it a new look. I am glad that many have found it useful.
-Jeffery Howe See particularly Contemporary Religious Artists http://www.bc.edu/bc_org/avp/cas/fnart/links/contemp_relig.html


Arts and Faith- Visual Arts From the brilliant canvases of the Renaissance to the stained-glass artwork in your church, Christians have long used vibrant colors and images to showcase the depth and breadth of God’s love. The articles in this section highlight those who share their spirituality visually using all types of media. – from Loyola Press http://www.loyolapress.com/arts-and-faith-visual-arts.htm


How to Pray with the Eyes of the Heart  Kathryn Shirey explains how she discovered Visio Divina and suggests a five step approach (Preparation, Lectio, Meditatio, Oratio, Contemplatio,) She uses Rembrandt’s “The Storm at Sea” to explain this spiritual practice. https://www.kathrynshirey.com/pray-with-eyes-of-the-heart-visio-divina/

The-Storm-on-the-Sea-of-Galilee-Rembrandts-painting

Praying with Art – Visio Divina

While Lectio Divina is a method of praying with scripture, Visio Divina (Latin for “divine seeing”) is a method for praying with images or other media.-  Tim Mooney http://www.patheos.com/Resources/Additional-Resources/Praying-with-Art-Visio-Divina.html

“Genuine sacred art draws man to adoration, to prayer and to the love of God, Creator and Savior, the Holy One and Sanctifier.“ CCC, no. 2502

Visio Divina – Beth Richardson

“Visio divina invites the viewer into “divine seeing.” Visio divina shares roots with the ancient practice of lectio divina. (Lectio divina calls for a slow, careful interaction with scripture through meditation and prayer, allowing a word or phrase to rise in one’s consciousness, a holy word to be savored and examined.) Similarly, visio divina invites one to encounter the divine through images.” http://alivenow.upperroom.org/2012/08/15/visio-divina/


Visio Divina Videos – University of Portland

“Welcome to the Visio Divina video archive. Visio Divina — “sacred seeing” — is an ancient form of Christian prayer in which we allow our hearts and imaginations to enter into a sacred image, in silence, to see what God might have to say to us. The videos below offer guided experiences of Visio Divina. All that is required is your receptive, contemplative silence.” https://www.up.edu/garaventa/archives/visio-divina/index.html


Visio Divina Video from Sadlier

Ignite the imagination of your young disciples. Religious art provides an opportunity to see and hear the Word of God. This practice of praying with visual images is called Visio Divina or divine seeing. Dr. Barabara Sutton shares about the process of sacred seeing and how to facilitate the process of listening, seeing, contemplating, and praying with the Word.


Salt and Light Witness Fr. Marius Zerafa In an adventure befitting a best-selling spy thriller, Dominican Fr. Marius Zerafa led a quest to recover a stolen Caravaggio painting. Such is the remarkable life of this Maltese-born priest and art historian, who lectures at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum). Fr. Zerafa sits down with Witness host Fr. Thomas Rosica to discuss his love of sacred art.


“While the particular expressions of sacred art vary from culture to culture, authentic sacred art turns human minds, hearts, and souls, toward God” and urges catechists to revive the traditional practice of using great works of art “to instruct the faithful on the fundamental truths of the faith.” National Directory for Catechesis, no. 37 B,1


See also the following CARFLEO posts:

One comment

  1. Loved this post!! A wonderful resource that inspires an appreciation for the incredible capacity of visual art to fan the flames of faith. Thank you!

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