Editor's Note: For the next twelve days, leading up to Easter, Theresa Ceniccola will be leading us through a series of Journal Prompts related to the messages of Holy Week. We encourage you to spend a few moments praying with and journaling your responses to these prompts, or feel free to simply share your perspectives in the comments below. LMH

Explore the Messages of Holy Week in a Journal

The Passion of Christ is such a powerful story and yet sometimes I forget how much it relates to my own life today. I simply go through the motions during Holy Week and don’t allow myself to truly experience the lessons as God intended. I think this is because the traditional mode of “listening” in church is not enough to engage me.

I’m a visual-kinesthetic learner, which means I need to see and move in order to process information. That’s why journal writing is such a critical tool for me. I use my journal to help me reflect and examine different perspectives. I even bring my journal to church to take notes during the homily, write down scripture passages or hymnal verses and remain fully present and engaged during Mass. If you’re looking for a new way to explore the lessons of Holy Week, try keeping a Lenten Journal.

Day Nine - Mary: Finding Joy

Jesus meets his mother and tells her not to weep. Describe a time in your life when you were able to find humor, joy or a 'silver lining' in the midst of pain and suffering. Use clustering or mind-mapping to explore your thoughts on the word “Joy.” Start by writing the word “Joy” in the center of your page and then use free- association to add words or phrases that come to mind. When you have covered your page, take a look and notice any themes that emerge.

Copyright 2011 Theresa Ceniccola