Newsletter June 2018

Dear Lectio Friends
As we prepare to take a Summer break from Lectio Divina and look back over the past twelve months, it is encouraging to see the growth of the Lectio Centre and the establishment of new communities and outreach activities. The original Core Team  has been replaced by the Lectio Management Board and a new  Constitution has been drawn up and approved by the  St Catherine’s Dominican Community. All policies relating to the safe and efficient functioning of the Lectio Centre are now in place.

Mission Statement:

Experiencing together the Word of God alive and active today.


Lectio (Divina) Management Board:


Director:    Fr Joseph Ralph OP 

Chairperson:  Anne Smyth  

Vice Chairperson: Kate Byrne 

Secretary:  Joan Byrne 

Treasurer: Seamus O’Hanlon 

Members: John Farrell, Ann Rocks & Sr Zita Daly

Prior of Dominican Community.

Bursar of Dominican Community

The Board meets bi-monthly.

The Health and Safety, Child Protection, Data Protection and Fire Safety Policies and Procedures are now in place and all   Volunteers have been trained.

Details of Policies are available on the Lectio WEB Site:

Lectio Office:

This is running very efficiently thanks to Joan Byrne and a team of volunteers.

It opens from 10.00am-5.00pm Monday – Saturday

There are a wide range of Mass Cards available, also Dominican Periodicals and Magazines, and gift items promoting the word of God in the scriptures.

Visitors are assured of a warm welcome whenever they call.


A nourishing selection of spiritual, theological and biblical books are available for borrowing, as well as CDs and Periodicals.   In addition there is a Reference section.

Book Group

Organised by Joan Byrne.  It meets throughout the year on

Tuesday at 11.30am.  All are welcome.

Resource/ Support Sessions for Guides

Before each new series of Lectio Community gatherings Guides are invited to come together to prepare and support each other in best practice so as to make the Lectio table of the word  appetizing, accessible and enriching for all.

Historical Situation of Passages.

Significant work is now being done in the preparation for each session, grounding the text in its biblical, cultural and historical context and preparing Guidelines to help make the journey to life experience today.

Outreach Team:

In response to a growing demands there has been  a need to expand our Outreach Team. Fifteen volunteers gathered for formation sessions on four consecutive Thursdays: 

19 April – 10 May      Formation will be ongoing.

Lectio on the Road:

Advent: Fr Joseph & Kate Byrne visited St Mary’s High School , Upper Chapel Street, Newry to introduce Lection Divina to some members of Staff.

Arising out this Fr Joseph and Kate returned in Lent to introduce Lectio Divina to a group of 6th Form Students.

Thursday 14 June:   Fr Joseph, Kate Byrne & Anne Smyth  introduced Lectio to  R.E Teachers from the Dromore Diocese, in Dromantine.

Tuesday 19 June: Fr Joseph, Kate Byrne & Ann Smyth travelled to St John the Baptist College Portadown where a meeting of  Secondary School R.E Teachers ,  from Armagh Diocese was   being held.  On both occasions there was a positive response from teachers in terms of seeing in Lectio a way to deepen their own spiritual journeys, and exploring possibilities of how to pass this on to their students.

Priory Institute Dublin:

Under the direction of Fr Brendan Clifford  and Fr Joseph the  Priory Institute has offered a module on Lectio Divina as part of their Masters in Biblical Studies course . Seven of the thirteen students enrolled are taking this module.

Lectio Communities:

There are now eleven established Communities in the Lectio Centre itself. The Communities meet for twenty weeks a year spread over the seasons of Advent, Lent, Pentecost & Michaelmas.

There were two introductory sessions for newcomers offered during each series, on Wednesday 11.30am and Thursday 8.15pm.  The interest among Newcomers is very encouraging and many have joined established communities or formed new ones.

Annual Retreat:

Date: 1 July 2018

Time: 2.00-5.00pm

This will be conducted by Fr Brendan Clifford OP

Master General:

Fr Bruno Cadore, Master General of the Dominican Order visited the Community at St Catherine’s Priory on March 24th 2018.

In the afternoon he visited the Lectio Centre. He was very  enthusiastic and encouraging in his comments about our work serving the word of God.

Fund Raising:

There are two Annual Fund Raising Events to help support the Lectio Centre –

Sponsored Walk (September) and Christmas Bazaar.

In addition to these the sale of St Bridget’s Crosses, St Patrick Day Badges & Shamrock also contribute and we are very grateful to all who help make these events successful.

We extend our gratitude and thanks to all involved.

Sunday Guidelines:

The following members have been responsible for writing the Guidelines for the Sunday Gospels as found in the Dominican Weekly Bulletin.

Week 1: Siobhan McCaffery & Ann Rocks

Week 2: Kate Byrne, Sister Roisin & Sister Zita

Week 3: Joan Byrne & Rosaleen Pearce

Week 4: Anne Smyth, Pat Crawley & Mary Bell

Week 5: Fr Joseph Ralph



They are easy to access and navigate.

Lectio Website is a very valuable source of information as well as providing Weekly Gospel, Historical Situation & Guidelines.

The Lectio Divina Communities

Meet 20 out of the 52 weeks of the year.

Advent-4 weeks Lent-6 weeks Pentecost-5 weeks

Michaelmas-5 weeks

2 Communities meet on Monday

St. Mother Teresa- 7pm (Young Adults)

St. Dominic- 7pm

2 Communities meet on Tuesday

St. John the Baptist- 7pm

St. Rose of Lima- 7pm

6 Communities meet on Wednesday

Newcomers 11.30am

Eckhart  11.30am

St. Brigid’s- 7pm

St. John of the Cross- 7pm

St. Catherine’s- 8.15pm

Aquinas  8.15pm

3 Communities meet on Thursday

Mary Magdalene- 11 30am

St. Martin de Porres– 7pm

Newcomers 8.15pm