Jesus Prayer Spiriuality

Story Beads

Hazel, introduced me to her new 'His Story' bracelet. Each bead represents something in the story of Jesus. It was moving to hear her tell me the story, pointing at each bead in turn - the story was somehow more real - there is something special about the physicality of beads :

'One night there was a bright star which guided three men, who were the three wise men, to the birth of Jesus who later in life became a carpenter and a fisher of men and souls. He had twelve apostles who spread the Word Of Christ but on one dark day of hatred, envy & death He was crucified. He shed His blood for us to purify & save us. He rose and is now in Heaven seated with the Father & the Holy Spirit. and He did all this because of His great love for us.

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Spirituality of a Prayer Rope Maker

I find that making a prayer rope calms me, and the activity naturally becomes a 'still point' in a turning world; taking it further why not pray for the person you are making the prayer rope for and make it a spiritual activity? Liz Babbs book and CD, 'The Celtic Heart' has a beautiful meditation which fits:

Cords of Love
Thank you, Lord,
for the cutting and weaving
for that first umbilical knot
you were shaping
and forming
all that I was to become.

Thank you, Lord,
for the 'ups' and 'downs'
the 'unders' and 'overs'
you were weaving
beauty and purpose
into my life.

Psalm 139: 'When I was woven together in the depths of the earth,
your eyes saw my unformed body.'

and as you hold the cord, hold the person before God:

We hold each other's lives
in our hands
What fragility and responsibility
Eathen vessels formed
from loving hands
So easily crushed
by clumsy words and actions
and only forgiveness can reassemble the parts
according to the Maker's instructions.


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Anglican Prayer Bead Confirmation Experience

I sat on the beach at Tenby making knotted Anglican Prayer Cords for our
Confirmation Group - there are two adults (63 yrs and 38 yrs) and 3 young
people (12yrs). On our last session before the service, we had a practice and
then spent some time with God.

We started with an explanation and then we sang. We said the Lord's prayer on
the Cross, 'May the words of my mouth' etc on the invitatory bead, 'Jesus Lamb
of God, have mercy on me, a sinner
' on the single beads - they repeated after me
rather than have it on a bit of paper, then on each group of seven beads, we prayed in
turn for the world, the church - worldwide, our parish, congregation, the
people that had told us about God; our family and friends - the people who
loved us, we loved, who encouraged us to be here; ourselves - our journey with
God, the service; and then back to the invitatory and Lord's Prayer. We
finished with anointing and another song.

It was a really good time together with God - there was that quiet and stillness
and unwillingness to move or break the silence which comes from having been in
the presence of God. Chandy

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How to tie an Orthodox Prayer Rope

If you're feeling adventurous, I'm grateful to Brett, who sent me his link on How to tie an Orthodox Prayer Rope.

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MP3 Prayer - iPod Prayer

Downloadable MP3/iPod prayer possibilities are emerging, and I've been experimenting with them; it's easy to listen to them in the car or as you're going along. Came across these iPray Lent movie clip prayer sessions too late for Lent, but there's another site offering daily iPod/MP3 prayer downloads which started as a Lent trial, but has now been extended due to overwhelming demand after a quarter of a million downloads. It's and you can download mp3 or WMA files or subscribe in iTunes to play on your MP3 player or iPod. The music tracks for the sessions (each session lasts 10 or 12 minutes - I found it helpful to pause from time to time) are listed here if you want to follow them up - they tend to be contemplative chant or meditation music. If you'd like to try out Ignatian Spirituality, (using your imagination to encounter Jesus) then pray-as-you-go might be a place to start. Enjoy! Andrew

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to answer my question...

...does the gathering have to be physically together, or can it be spiritual and from a distance? I came across the Focolare movement years ago, and they opened my eyes to the reality that you can be 'gathered' in the intention and attitude of the presence of Jesus, of being 'in his name' with someone with whom you are not physically present. It can be a source of great strength... Andrew

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the three time rule...

A friend sent me a text message to say that she'd been led to pray for me for the last two days. I'd actually been having a difficult time and I feel very moved that God would inspire someone to do that for me. Nigel Mumford in his book Hand to Hand: From Combat to Healing writes, 'I pray for particular people when they come to mind, and often find later that there was a real need on that particular occasion. I follow 'the three time rule:' when someone comes to mind three times, I call or visit to see if something is wrong. Often I find that God has communicated a friend's need.' The knots on a Prayer Rope or Rosary Beads can be used to represent and remind us of those for whom we want to pray.

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pearls of life now in the UK

The Pearls of Life are now available in the UK at SPCK bookshops price £6.99 and they come with a little leaflet. I'd really like to see an English translation of Martin Lonnebo's book about the Pearls. Share your experience of using the Pearls in a comment? Andrew

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Poll: prayer beads/ropes/cords

Around 500 people visit anamchara each month - I thought it would be interesting to find out how many of you are new to the concept of prayer beads/prayer ropes as an aid to prayer and meditation? Maybe like me, you already use one? Please vote in the new Sidebar Poll (you also might be interested to see the results so far - they pop up after your vote...) I look forward to hearing from you: Andrew

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Pearls of Life and the Lord's Prayer...

Not long ago I sent for a set of 'Pearls of Life' from Sweden by Martin Lonnebo - I wear them on my wrist and I've been following his Meditations for each pearl - but recently I've been more and more convinced that Jesus taught his followers the 'Lord's Prayer' or 'Our Father', as a pattern for them in response to their question; 'Teach us to pray' (they didn't ask 'teach us a prayer' did they?) - it seems that the Church largely promotes his teaching as just a prayer rather than the holistic way of praying Jesus intended; how short we're being sold!

Then I came across Andii Bowsher's blog 'anamchairde' on the Paternoster Rosary by happy coincidence - and now I notice that Lonnebo has written about the connection between the Pearls of Life and the Lord's (way of) Prayer - see the July Word of the Month on the first pearl of Love.


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