Apps for Daily Worship and Reflection
The Church of England has developed a range of downloadable apps to support daily prayer, worship and Bible study. Each comes complete with the full daily lectionary readings (note that there is a small subscription charge for these apps, £0.99 per 12 months).
For daily prayers, every day, visit the online website of Sacred Space. Every day’s Prayers include a centering prayer, a short meditation, a reading from the Bible, and a concluding prayer. Alternatively, you can download their app onto your Apple/iOS or Android/Google Play device.
Prayer on the Move
For recordings of daily worship, try Pray-as-you-Go. Coming from an Ignatian background, each day’s offering includes a short reflection, some meditative music, Bible reading(s) and time for prayer; it is also available as an App. Ideal for those of us whose regular quiet times are when we’re commuting, or driving between appointments!
Imaginative and Ignatian prayer
In his Spiritual Exercises, St Ignatius gives us the idea of meeting sacred scripture in our own lives, often through imaginative contemplation. The website, Pathways to God, is full of ideas of ways to pray creatively – for example, through art (click here), and it also has a useful Resources section for finding Ignatian retreats and Quiet Days across the UK.
Ideas for prayer
Sometimes it feel hard to know where to start with prayer, and equally hard to explain it to others. This resource from the Diocese of Portsmouth explores ‘how to pray’, by giving attention to each of the senses. It is accessible, and extremely helpful.
How to Pray (Alone, with others, at any time, in any place)
For an easy-to-read, yet powerful and Spirit-filled introduction to prayer, as well as a resource to come back to again and again as ‘experienced beginners in prayer’, this book by the Archbishop of York, Rt Revd Stephen Cottrell, comes highly recommended, and is available to buy online (click here!).
‘Mapping the Gospels’
For a novel and imaginative way of of exploring and praying with the gospels, this project uses paintings, poems and prayers to stir the imagination and stimulate new insights from the gospel text. Each ‘map’ takes the reader on a journey through a key episode in the gospel, or through one of the liturgical seasons of the Christian Year – Advent, Lent, All Saints, All Souls, Remembrance Sunday, Ascension, Pentecost and Trinity Sunday. For a very small cost, the beautifully presented ‘maps’ can be bought through the Diocese of Norwich by clicking here.
Bible Study and Homilies
The ‘Homilies Project‘ was developed by the Diocese of Lincoln Diocese to enable people to engage with the scriptures, without having to rely on the presence of a licensed and theologically trained leader. The site contains links to short homilies, based on the Gospel reading from the Common Worship lectionary, for every Sunday of the year (usually published at least a week in advance!). Each homily contains details of the day’s readings, with the Gospel printed out in full, and is designed to stimulate discussion and prayer; each ends with questions that could be used to begin discussion in small groups.