Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means "saying prayers" or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you're a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.
The following topics will be covered:
* Prayer of Jesus, Paul and the Early Christians
* Prayer and Christian Spirituality
* Basic Ingredients of Personal Prayer
* Praying With Scripture (Lectio Divina)
* Centering Prayer
* Christian Meditation
* Breathing Prayer
* Praying Psalms
* Praying with Icons and Art (Visio Divina)
* Dealing with Distractions
* Supports for Daily Prayer
The course will consist of 10 short video lectures, with supplemental resources for each. Discussion questions and comments are welcomed. Students are encouraged to work at their own pace, but not simply to rush through the course. Taking time each day to practice the prayer methods is an important part of the learning experience.
If you are seeking to grow in your practice of Christian prayer, this course will be helpful to you. Even if you're not sure and just where you are with Christian beliefs, come and see.
Why take this course from Philip St. Romain? This lecture presents course goals, topics, Philip's qualifications, and encouraging remarks to get us started.
How's your prayer life? This short quiz (10 questions) helps you to see where you are with prayer. It will also be offered at the end of the course for comparison.
Reviews the meaning of prayer to Jesus, Paul and the early Christians. The relational, dialogical character of Christian prayer is emphasized, and this will characterize the methods that will be taught in later presentations.
This lecture situates prayer in the larger context of the Christian life. Participants are invited to examine the priority they give to prayer, study, community and service, and to set at least two goals in areas they would like to grow in.
Personal prayer entails the ingredients of time, silence, solitude and openness to God. Participants are invited to examine how each of these areas, and to set goals to put them into practice.
The Lectio Divina process is an ancient method for praying with scripture. Students who follow the guidance of this lecture will know how to put the steps of Lectio Divina into practice in their lives.
Reviews three contemplative prayer methods: Christian Meditation, Centering Prayer, and Breathing Prayer. Students will receive instructions and a detailed resource handout on how to put each method into practice.
Distractions are a common problem. This presentation reviews five practical ways to deal with distractions that participants will be able to immediately practice.
Attentive prayer differs from reflective and contemplative methods in that we simply attend to the words we're praying in worship and reading as though they were our own. Participants will know how to pray attentively in worship service, psalm reading and rote prayers.
"Visio Divina" means "sacred seeing" or "divine seeing." This lecture provides practical instruction on the ancient method of praying with icons and religious art. Participants will know how to use this method as one approach to God in prayer.
Once you know how to work the methods taught in this course, you can begin to combine them (or parts of them) in your prayer. Participants will review possibilities for doing so, and will identify helps for growing in prayer.
How's your prayer life? This short quiz (10 questions) helps you to see where you are with prayer at the end of this course.
Just 10 questions to test what you've learned in this course. Please do not take this test unless you've listened to all the lectures.
I am the author of 25 books on prayer and spirituality, with a background in retreat work, spiritual direction, alcohol and drug abuse counseling, and biology. Publishers of my books include Crossroads, Publ., Ave Maria Press, Liguori Publications, and Pelican Publishing Co. During the past five years, I have also ventured into publishing on demand with Lulu Press. Current employment is at Heartland Center for Spirituality in Great Bend, KS, where I present retreats, workshops, and spiritual direction.
Degrees include a M.S. in Biology from the University of Southwestern Louisiana (1974) and a Doctor of Ministry in Spiritual Direction from the Graduate Theological Foundation (1996).
I am married and the father of three grown children, with four grandchildren as well. My wife and I reside in Bel Aire, KS, which is just outside of Wichita.