By Ron Pereira
I’ve recently made a few tweaks to my morning routine as it relates to the “spiritual workout” I go through. Here’s my process in case you’d like to make any changes or additions to your daily spiritual work.
From here I now head to the Catena Aurea for a deeper reflection on the day’s Gospel reading. The Catena Aurea is pretty amazing… here’s a high level description.
St. Thomas Aquinas’ Catena Aurea is the masterpiece anthology of Patristic commentary on the Gospels and includes the work of over eighty Church Fathers.
Imagine a round-table discussion of the Gospels among the supreme theologians of the Church. The Catena Aurea is very close! St. Thomas Aquinas compiled this opus from sermons and commentaries on the Gospels written by the early Church Fathers, arranging their thoughts in such a way that they form a continuous commentary on each Gospel. For each of the four Gospel writers, the Catena Aurea starts by indicating the verses to be analyzed, then taking each verse phrase-by-phrase, provides the early Fathers insights into the passage.
Sometimes I move through these reflections quickly… other times I may sit and stare at one of the commentaries and really reflect on what it means. And, truth be told, sometimes I just sit and stare and wonder what in the heck that church father meant… I’ve even said this a few times!
I believe there are a few free versions of the Catena Aurea available online if you want to do some Google research.
Finally, after the Catena Aurea readings I head over to the iBreviary app where I read parts of the Office of Readings. The app is a little crazy to use when you first start. Here’s what I do.
- Open the app on my iPhone
- Click the “Today” link at the top of the app
- Click on “Pray” in the top left corner of the app
- Click on Office of Readings
- I then scroll down to the First and Second Readings and give those a read
By this time I usually have small children beginning to roam about so I begin to wrap things up before heading out to the barn to suffer well during a physical workout!
I’d really like to hear your morning spiritual routine in the comments section below. What do you read? How long do you spend? If you’re reading this via email you’ll need to click through to the website in order to leave a comment. Just click the title of the article at the top.
Until next time… be holy, eat clean, and do more push-ups!