Devotions are ways we raise our voice in prayer, and ways we listen for the voice of God, or develop an awareness of His ever abiding presence. Often they are prayers recited in conjunction with something physical as a way to ground the mind in the present moment and keep it from wandering. Some devotions are fairly rigid in structure, like the Franciscan Crown Rosary, while others are more free-flowing, like walking in silence in a labyrinth or sitting in silent meditation, following the breath and preparing the ground of the mind and soul for God's grace to enter. Below are a few devotions that some of the Brothers use. We hope you find them to be inspiring or in some way beneficial in your journey.
Many religions have used strands of beads to assist with prayer. The Christian rosary in specific has been said to have originated with St. Dominic, who, legend has it, had a vision of the Virgin Mary in which the Blessed Mother instructed him to use a necklace of prayer beads as a means to prepare the soil of faithful souls, that they might better recieve the Holy Spirit. It is quite common that the rosary is associated with the blessed Virgin. A rosary consists of a string of beads with larger beads in their midst representing particular prayers or passages of Scripture. The use of the rosary helps to bring us into contemplative or meditative prayer—a state of mindfulness in the presence of God—by use of mind, body, and spirit. The touching of the fingers on each successive bead is an aid in keeping our mind from wandering, and the rhythm of the prayers leads us more readily into stillness. There are many different types of rosaries; two popular ones are shown here below. The first is the well known Franciscan rosary, which has wide usage amongst Roman Catholics and many Anglicans as well. The other is a more specifically Anglican style rosary, which is typically smaller in size and can be worn on the wrist when one is not actively praying with it.