Can Coloring become a Spiritual Practice?

sunColoring, as in coloring books, crayons, colored pens, paints and pencils are increasing being seen
as important spiritual practices that for some provide important insights and spiritual experiences
that rival their church attendance. These practices help us relax, reduce stress and promote spiritual

This idea was first harnessed by Sybil MacBeth in her inspirational book Praying in Color. It walks
readers through how to doodle and color while praying for the sick, loved ones or whatever is on
their minds. Praying while coloring puts the rational mind on hold and opens a doorway though
which our hearts are stirred and engaged.

Praying while reflecting on scripture has a similar effect. It stirs our imaginations to see the scripture
in a new light inviting us to interact not just with the words but also with the emotions and images
they create.

All religions use art to express themselves — whether it’s a painting, a photograph, an icon, a
mandala, calligraphy or a cave painting. Our entering into these more visual experiences moves our
focus from hearing to seeing, and in the process moves us from our minds to the heart.

There are many images that come to mind as we move towards Christmas. The ones in this booklet
depict the O Antiphons, which are explained in more detail below. They are paired with the
traditional scriptures associated with these symbols.

The images were originally created for an Advent/ Christmas devotional we produced last year, A
Journey Toward Home: Soul Travel for Advent to Lent.

We hope that you will find both the images and the scriptures provide powerful foci for reflection
and prayer.

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Thank you!