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eschator83
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« on: May 03, 2021, 09:59:15 AM »

I pulled this book out of the cellar almost at random for something new to read at camp.  Fr Kersten's career was very interesting (although he says not a word about it in the book), and he has chosen a series of daily Scripture readings and added his own commentaries to encourage meditation.  By a very strange coincidence I decided to write a post about starting these meditations on the same day (4/29) that I found about an hour after I wrote my post a recent article about Pope Francis' recent teaching about how to properly meditate.
Now I am going back to read whatever comments there may be on the two posts.  And to try to reconcile these messages about meditation.
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« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2021, 02:38:31 PM »

Catechism on MEDITATION
2705 Meditation is above all a quest. The mind seeks to understand the why and how of the Christian life, in order to adhere and respond to what the Lord is asking. The required attentiveness is difficult to sustain. We are usually helped by books, and Christians do not want for them: the Sacred Scriptures, particularly the Gospels, holy icons, liturgical texts of the day or season, writings of the spiritual fathers, works of spirituality, the great book of creation, and that of history the page on which the "today" of God is written.
2706 To meditate on what we read helps us to make it our own by confronting it with ourselves. Here, another book is opened: the book of life. We pass from thoughts to reality. To the extent that we are humble and faithful, we discover in meditation the movements that stir the heart and we are able to discern them. It is a question of acting truthfully in order to come into the light: "Lord, what do you want me to do?"
2707 There are as many and varied methods of meditation as there are spiritual masters. Christians owe it to themselves to develop the desire to meditate regularly, lest they come to resemble the three first kinds of soil in the parable of the sower.5 But a method is only a guide; the important thing is to advance, with the Holy Spirit, along the one way of prayer: Christ Jesus.
2708 Meditation engages thought, imagination, emotion, and desire. This mobilization of faculties is necessary in order to deepen our convictions of faith, prompt the conversion of our heart, and strengthen our will to follow Christ. Christian prayer tries above all to meditate on the mysteries of Christ, as in lectio divina or the rosary. This form of prayerful reflection is of great value, but Christian prayer should go further: to the knowledge of the love of the Lord Jesus, to union with him.
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« Reply #2 on: May 10, 2021, 11:53:32 AM »

Many thanks for your very helpful reminder.  I have a full 3-ring devoted to meditation at home, but little here at camp but my new Fr Kersten book, and my Catechism.  It is fascinating that almost 90 pages are devoted to prayer, and Pope Francis' recent Address prompts me to consider further the CCC 2708 passage that prayer seeks above all to meditate on the mysteries of Christ, but should go further to knowledge of and union with Him.
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« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2021, 10:15:26 PM »

Many thanks for your very helpful reminder.  I have a full 3-ring devoted to meditation at home, but little here at camp but my new Fr Kersten book, and my Catechism.  It is fascinating that almost 90 pages are devoted to prayer, and Pope Francis' recent Address prompts me to consider further the CCC 2708 passage that prayer seeks above all to meditate on the mysteries of Christ, but should go further to knowledge of and union with Him.
With prayer it is a great grace to gain knowledge of God and an even greater grace to attain union with God. Union with God is a grace that radically transforms life. Mystical prayer, being entirely the merit of God, is far more desirable than natural prayer. For natural prayer takes effort on the part of the one praying but mystical prayer is sustained by the overflow of the Holy Spirit within the one praying such that the one praying becomes like a vessel being filled with the grace of the Holy Spirit and brought into greater communion with God. Though the effects of mystical prayer cannot be caused by any amount of natural effort, because mystical prayer is a work of grace effected by God within the one who prays.
Therefore natural prayer or acquired prayer is the normative means of acquiring merit through prayer being effected by the will and enacted by the intellect for the benefit of the soul, for to praise God and to offer worship to God are things that the heart can do. Simply recalling the works of God or remembering the benefits which God gives to the Saints can be turned into a prayer simply by the intention of the will and the understanding of the mind. The mind and the heart are greatly benefitted by spontaneous and unceasing prayer. This prayer does not require the normal eloquence of oration but can simply be blessing God or adoring God's goodness silently or humbly asking God's mercy.
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« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2021, 04:43:47 PM »

Fr John's book has good indexes both for topics addressed and also for Scripture verses cited.  He has 11 index references to prayer, the first is the Jan 7 meditation entitled "He has given us of His Spirit," which reflects the 1 John 4:13-17.  Fr John has used the NAB 1970 edition, but here at camp I have only the 1986 edition, which has many more changes than I would have imagined.  Curiously the index cites the meditation topic as "God's help needed for prayer." 
Fr John's Introduction to the meditation starts with "There is no doubt that "how to pray" is a problem for many Christians."  The meditation emphasis is on God's love, His presence in us, and our presence in Him.  It seems a stark contrast to Pope Francis' reported emphasis on prayer and meditation through Jesus.  I found two separate articles about the Pope's General Address on 4/28/21, but I'm unable to find the full English translation for any General Audience- would you know how to find them.?
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« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2021, 12:43:40 PM »

Fr John's book has good indexes both for topics addressed and also for Scripture verses cited.  He has 11 index references to prayer, the first is the Jan 7 meditation entitled "He has given us of His Spirit," which reflects the 1 John 4:13-17. 
Feel free to share any meditations that you think are edifying.
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« Reply #6 on: May 15, 2021, 05:29:20 PM »

Blessings to you for the directions to Pope Francis' General Audience message of 4/28/21 on Meditation.  It seemed a quite strong message which might undermine the faith and habits of many sincere and righteous people.  There was more charity in the full message than in the newspaper reports I had read, but I still worry about some people being disturbed without further explanation and justification.
I launched searches in both Bing and Xfinity on prayers for Catholic meditation- other than Xfinity ads the two were remarkably similar, but not very helpful.  I'm trying to find a format of meditation I can follow for at least 10 mins.  It may be best to try to focus on a single verse of Scripture rather than a longer passage.  I've been working on this for 17 days without good consistency or communion.  First issue is communion with God as Trinity, or Father, or Son.
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« Reply #7 on: May 15, 2021, 08:18:02 PM »

The most reliable form of meditative practice is lectio divina, reading a verse or section of Scripture aloud, meditating on it verbally: first repeating words or sentences or ideas that stand out as important and considering how these verses relate to you. Pondering how they find fulfillment in relation to Christ and the life of grace and then praying based upon the language that you picked out in the meditative portion and praying either outloud, or silently. Your pray should be unceasing for the portion of this time until you feel that you can say no more. Then the period of silent reflection upon the Creed, the Mystery of Creation pertaining to the Father, the Mystery of Redemption pertaining to the Son and the Mystery of Sanctification relating to the Holy Spirit, reflecting on the truths of the Christian faith, how knowledge of these truths finds its fruition in prayer and then subsequently in action. Then worship of God for His perfections, His miracles, His deeds and actions and essence are altogether good and righteous. Silent contemplation is the final part, where the soul lingers in God's presence, this is amplified when the soul is in a state of grace, where mutual friendship abides in the soul with God. The listening attentively in silence is perhaps the termination of the experience before a new verse or passage is chosen and the cycle is repeated. In this way you intentionally may join into the prayers and intentions of the Church and participate in the ancient conversation with God through Scripture and prayer.
When memorization is made the purpose of meditation, the process can then become automatic, Scripture can be recalled, spoken, reflected, prayed over, God's saving acts are recalled and the mystery of salvation is once more unfolded within the mind.
Asceticism and discipline help promote mystical experience and prayers should be made requesting God's aid in prayer, putting humility at the for front of the soul's prayers. Reflection upon the marvelous task of meditating in the heart over the Immeasurable One, is a task best reserved for a calm and stable mind. The purpose of this process is to desire God's grace and mercy and love, with ever increasing fervor and superabundant desire.
The satisfaction of all holy desires is found within the Sacraments and thus most especially are contemplations of the Sacred Mysteries instituted for the salvation of the world.
Realizing one's union with Christ in baptism and one's strength in confirmation is a amazing consequence of fruitful contemplation of the Sacraments.
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« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2021, 01:21:13 PM »

I've been very consistent in attempting daily meditation, following the Scriptures in Fr John's book, but hampered by a bunch of issues which have kept me in pseudo-meditation frequently for two hours or more.
First issue is the selection of the meditation topics-  Fr John has at least one single-verse meditation, but most are longer passages and most present a considerable number of topic options that are not necessarily very closely related.  These seem to call me to too much time for selection, end encourage my mind to wander unproductively.
Second difficulty is I've wandered between Fr John's recommended process of meditation, Pope Francis recent address, and my old mind's recollection of at least a half dozen books, including CCC, Frank Sheed's Theology which I spent many years reading, You by Fr Link, Bro Lawrence's continual prayer.  The reason I was trying to be spontaneous/impromptu rather than following a set script.
Next issue was I think I needed a better prayer than what came to me spontaneously, probably because the Holy Spirit surely was a bit concerned about what my process was going to be, since I didn't know myself and usually changed midway through.  I've spent a good deal of time looking for prayers, and drafting some
I have hope, and consolation, that our Lord Jesus is more pleased by our sincere efforts than by our eloquence or our flawless execution.
Today's meditation was on Acts 9:31, with these probably key topics:
peace in the church- I was distracted by imagination of Jewish persecution, and some pagans, plus false prophets.
enjoyment of consolation- Consolation seems to imply persecution and other difficulties.  I think we are most effective disciples/evangelists/apologists when we share the celebration of our Christian Joy and support our neighbors.  Could St Francis have prayed, let me not seek consolation, but to console?
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« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2021, 02:32:13 PM »

Meditation is just one part of the wheel. The wheel is meant to turn, from reading of the Sacred Scripture to lifting your mind to heavenly things, to praying for God's graces, to contemplation of the Sacred Mysteries. If you are switching between methods it is because you lack stability of resolve. In meditation, I believe in using a framework for exegesis. For me, meditation is an exegetical excercise that is meant to cast light upon the obscurity of Sacred Scripture. In essence, the goal of meditation is to learn and to recall. Prayer then is like gathering a bundle of myrrh and offering it to God. For we are the fragrance of Christ. Then the contemplation, either acquired or infused is begun. The prayer of union and simplicity is found in contemplation where as the discursive prayer is found in meditation. Their must be a skopos or target for your meditation. The center of the wheel is Christ, all of our actions of reading, meditating, praying and contemplating should be done in the Light of Christ. It is the Light of Christ that glorifies the soul and the mind with grace and fills the heart with the sweetness of the Holy Spirit. Pope Francis wisely said "We must thus always remember that the method is a path, not a goal: any method of prayer, if it is to be Christian, is part of that Sequela Christi that is the essence of our faith. The methods of meditation are paths to travel in order to arrive at the encounter with Jesus, but if you stop on the road, and just look at the path, you will never find Jesus."

My advice, start with the Psalms. Read a psalm. Meditate on how it connects to Christ and life in the Spirit. Pray using verses from the Psalm. Then contemplate in silence. The act of contemplation can take place at first verbally but it always will result in silent reception of spiritual knowledge. Stillness is a great aid in all this. A calm heart and a sharp mind and a ready memory are very helpful aids in the processes.
The idea is after you finish the silent portion of contemplation, you find another psalm and begin the process again. This method promotes learning and building connections between Scripture and the teachings of Christ, the Apostles and the Church.

Example Psalm 13
How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I bear grief in my soul?
How long must I have sorrow in my heart all day long?
How long shall my enemy prevail over me?
(Pause)
Look, and answer me, O Lord my God!
Give light to my eyes lest I fall asleep in death!
Lest my enemy say "I have prevailed over him."
Lest my foes rejoice when they see me fall.
(Pause)
As for me, I trust in Thy merciful love!
Let my heart rejoice in Thy salvation!
I will sing to the Lord who has been bountiful with me.

Meditation
Christ upon the Cross, had to wait in excruciating pain in solidarity with sinners, Himself being the Elect of the elect, but having taken upon Himself the sin of the world, He bore the curse of the reprobate.
Jesus suffered, and in His agony He cried out "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me." This is very much akin to being "forgotten" by God.
The face of God signifies His favor, whomsoever His face shines upon, His favor falls.
To feel that God is hiding His face, is a common consequence of sin which alienates mankind from God.
Mankind had once beheld God face to face but with the advent of sin, God's face was concealed in mystery.
Moses was a holy prophet, privileged to look upon God with unveiled face, speaking face to face with God as a man does with His friend.
Jesus offers us this divine friendship and we may behold His face in the Most Blessed Sacrament of the altar.
Sinners with a living conscience bear grief for all of their sins, as the prophet says "My sin is always before me."
Christ bore our grief and shame upon the cross and even still He loves us and was more than willing to die to set us free.
Sorrow in one's heart over sin is considered godly sorrow if it leads to repentance, otherwise it is a worldly sorrow which leads to death.
Sorrow for sin is an important part of desolation and longing for joy only finds its true fulfillment in reconciliation with God, especially through the Sacrament of Confession.
The enemy is victorious over us when we engage in mortal sin and cut ourselves off, through willful sin. The state of a soul in mortal sin is also in danger of demonic assaults.
The demons cannot harm a soul in a state of grace but without God's protective grace, there is nothing a soul can do to combat demonic forces which are more powerful than a human alone.
This first portion of the psalm reflects the soul in a state of distress, suffering, sadness, and ultimately, mortal sin.
Jesus Christ, who never sinned, took upon Himself our burdens in order to lift them from us.
Jesus Christ, who is greater than all men, loves each and every one of us, even those in mortal sin and He calls us to conversion, to repentance and ultimately to communion.
The prophet demands that God look upon him, because without God's "looking" the soul will stay in a state of mortal sin.
But if God should cast so much as a look of pity upon that poor soul, grace would flood their heart and darkness could not stand in the sight of God.
The prophet demands that God answer his prayers, because trusting that God has heard all prayers, the prophet expects God who is justice, to vindicate his cause, to justify his soul and to save his life.
This boldness is not to be confused with anger. The prophet has not grown angry with God, but has grown bold in the Spirit, "Hear O God and answer me O Lord!" This is a prayer of trust and dedication.
The prophet has committed his trust to the One True God and in Him alone does He place his hope.
The prophet beseeches the Lord to give "light to his eyes", this is both a request of divine enlightenment and a humble request to preserve his life, because the "light of the eyes" is both a name for the soul and spiritual vision.
To fall asleep in death, is the state of a soul in mortal sin, who has fallen asleep not in Christ but in death. For the wages of sin is death.
The prophet then requests that God confound the enemy, the devil, whom the prophet acknowledges, he cannot defeat alone.
For by the devil had caused the soul to enter into mortal sin and alienation from God, but the soul beseeches God "do not let the devil have victory over my soul!"
The prophet does not wish to be defeated by his enemy, and neither should the soul desire to be defeated by sin.
Jesus Christ our Great High Priest, can provide all necessary graces to overcome sin, provided that we no longer are attached to sin.
For the Holy Spirit, when He comes, is like a consuming fire, and He will set your soul on fire and you will burn with intense love and be filled with light, provided that you give up all attachment to sin and desire only to God's will.
Otherwise, the smoke of your torment will extinguish the Spirit and you will burn in agony and you will be blinded, unable to see the dazzling display of the Spirit working within you.
To relinquish all attachment to sin is a great grace, and that is why the prophet in another psalm says "preserve your servant from presumptuous sin." and "cleanse me from my secret sin"
Finally, the prophet turns his mind, no longer upon his troubles, no longer upon his sorrow, no longer upon his desolation, but upon his God.
For the God of the holy prophets is Merciful Love, whose praises never end.
The prophet in another psalm says "His mercy endures forever" and "His lovingkindness endures forever"
Jesus Christ, the Word of God, is that merciful love in whom the prophet trusts.
The soul in a state of consolation, having received the good graces of God, realizes that it is a curse to trust only in oneself or in men, but that all trust must belong to God who alone is Trustworthy.
The prophets heart, flooded with good thoughts, rejoices in God's salvation, which is unending bliss, unchanging love, perfect peace, unfailing satisfaction, immortal glorification, and things beyond the realm of speech and words which the Apostle says no man can comprehend.
The prophet concludes his lamentation by saying "I shall sing to the Lord who has dealt bountifully with me!"
Indeed it is the singing of the elect that differentiates them from among the reprobate, as Saint Hildegard says the devil cannot sing.
The song of the joyful heart is a music which pleases the Lord and merits a reward, for in great trial, comes great merit and with great testing comes great reward.
Prayer
I will wait upon the Lord, in His name I will trust.
I shall wait for His mercy. I shall wait for His help.
I long for the day of His coming. I shall never forget all that He has done for me.
O Lord, you have promised that you will not forget the least of your children.
Behold, here I am, a poor sinful child. Do not delay to bring aid to me.
Do not hide the beauty of Thy countenance from me O Lord God of Hosts!
Let Thy goodness shine upon me! Let Thy name be upon me!
For I love Thy ways and all Thy paths lead to heaven!
O Most Merciful God, O Most Tender God, O Most Loving God!
Increase the compunction in my heart that I may despise my sins and love Thy mercy!
Strip my soul of all attachments that cause me ungodly sorrow!
Rid me of all unnecessary things and utterly take away all evil desires from my heart!
I love Thee O God and I desire to do Thy will!
Never permit me to be separated from Thee by the least sins!
O my God I repent of all my sins and desire to live in Thee, my fortress and for Thee, my master, and through Thee, my life.
For Thy might shall prevail over the enemy O Almighty God! For the heavens and the earth break forth into terror, rending and melting at the sight of Thy wrath!
O Lord, I would die of fear of Thee, but Thou has comforted my soul with the help of Thy grace, that I may love Thee and not perish from fear.
Look upon the face of Thy servant O God, for I am as Thy child, wayward and lost, in darkness and weeping!
Hear my prayer O Most High, condescend Thy divine majesty to the smallness of my life and fill me with Thy unfailing joy!
In Thee O God is the True Light, send forth Thy Word into my heart that I may ever contemplate Thy goodness and behold Thy unspeakable countenance!
For Thou O God art the desire of angels and the fulfillment of Saints and all things rightly give Thee praise!
If I die, let me rest in Thee and if I live, let me not be dead in sin but alive in Thee O God!
Let Thy Good Spirit come to me and rest upon me that I may rest in Him.
Drive far from me all evil foes and wicked spirits and utterly put them to shame!
For I trust O God that Thou shall punish with unquenchable flame and unending torment all those that oppose Thee!
For with Thee O God is Dread and Majesty and with Thee O God is Justice and Goodness!
Therefore hoping in Thy goodness and trusting in Thy mercy I beg pardon for my sins, and request all necessary graces to live a holy Christian life.
Seeing as I am a weak and sinful soul, do Thou preserve me in Thy good graces and do not fail to raise me up if I should fall through my own fault.
Do not abandon me O God of Glory! For I shall ever trust in Thee!
For Thy merciful love gives me comfort and Thy name is my hope.
Fill my heart with the joy of Thy salvation and put within me the certainty of hope!
O Lord fill my lips with song and my heart with a hymn that I may praise Thee forever and ever!
Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised His mercy endures forever!
Halleluyah!
Amen
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CRUX SANCTI PATRIS BENEDICTI
CRUX SACRA SIT MIHI LUX!
NON DRACO SIT MIHI DUX!
VADE RETRO SATANA!
NUMQUAM SUADE MIHI VANA!
SUNT MALA QUAE LIBAS
IPSE VENENA BIBAS!
All Glory Be To God!
All Praise Be To God!
For God Is Greater Than All Things!
Alleluia!
Alleluia!
Alleluia!
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« Reply #10 on: May 26, 2021, 08:29:55 PM »

Great post, many thanks, I'm still working on this (much slower, I'm afraid, at camp).
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« Reply #11 on: May 30, 2021, 07:59:03 PM »

The concept of a wheel of worship/prayer? is not familiar to me- is there a primary or other convenient reference/authority?  I appreciate your reference.  The lack of stability of resolve seems a bit harsh.  I think I'm trying to find a method of prayerful meditation- or meditative prayer- that is effective in bringing me to communion with the Divine Trinity, although lately I'm thinking a great deal about Pope Francis' emphasis on seeking guidance of the Holy Spirit to Jesus' mediation to the Father.  Can this be seeking a false shortcut?
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« Reply #12 on: May 30, 2021, 09:18:05 PM »

The concept of a wheel of worship/prayer? is not familiar to me- is there a primary or other convenient reference/authority?  I appreciate your reference.
Saint Gregory the Great speaks about the process of Lectio Divina as a wheel in his homilies on the Prophet Ezekiel. The basic idea is that as the wheel turns, your mind is raised higher. From earthly things to heavenly things.
I shall post a section
Quote
"And when the living creatures went, the wheels also went together by them: and when the living creatures were lifted up from the earth, the wheels also were lifted up with them." Ezekiel 1:19
The living creature go when the Saints understand from Holy Writ how to lead a moral life. Truly the living creatures are lifted up from the earth when the Saint raise themselves in contemplation. And because each of the Saints advances in Holy Writ as far as this same Holy Writ progresses in them, it is rightly said: "When the living creatures went, the wheels went together by them and when the living creatures were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were also lifted up with them." Ezekiel 1:19 because the divine words grow with the reader, for the deeper each understands them the deeper they penetrate into the Saints. Therefore the wheels would not be lifted up if the living creatures were not raised up, because if the minds of the readers have not attained to the heights, the Divine Logos, as if in the depths, their meaning lay not understood. For when the saying of Holy Writ (if the perception of divine speech be dull) do not arouse the mind of the reader, whoever they are, and in their contemplation their intellect does not shine forth with light, the wheel is idle and on the earth because the living creature goes, ie seeks the rules to lead a good life, and through the footsteps of his heart discovers how to plot the course of good works, the wheel keeps pace with him, because as you find increase in divine speech you will yourself have progressed within it. If indeed a winged creature has stretched himself in contemplation the wheels are forthwith lifted from the earth, because you understand that things are not earthly which you previously believed to be spoken in Holy Writ according to earthly custom. And it happens that you perceive the words of Holy Writ to be heavenly, if kindled through the grace of contemplation, you are suspended on heavenly things. And the wonderful and ineffable virtue of Holy Writ is recognized when the mind of the reader is pervaded by divine love. Because therefore the living creature rises to the heights the wheel revolves. Then follows: "Whithersoever the spirit went, thither as the spirit went the wheels also were lifted up withal and followed it."
For whither the spirit of the reader aims, thither divine words too are lifted, because if you seek something high by seeing and feeling, these same sacred things grow with you, and ascend with you to the heights. It is well said then of these same wheels: "and followed it." For the reader's spirit, if they there seek moral or historical understanding, the perception of moral history follows them. If they seek figurative knowledge, allusive speech is soon recognized. If contemplative, the wheels forth almost take wing and are suspended in the air, because heavenly understanding of Holy Writ is laid bare in words. "Whithersoever the spirit went, thither as the spirit went the wheels also were lifted up withal and followed it." Ezekiel 1:20 Then the wheels follow the spirit because the words of Holy Writ, as has often been said already, grow through the intellect according to the perception of the reader.
I learned a great deal from the reading Lectio Divina The Medieval Experience of Reading by Duncan Robertson
Thia
The lack of stability of resolve seems a bit harsh.  I think I'm trying to find a method of prayerful meditation- or meditative prayer- that is effective in bringing me to communion with the Divine Trinity, although lately I'm thinking a great deal about Pope Francis' emphasis on seeking guidance of the Holy Spirit to Jesus' mediation to the Father.  Can this be seeking a false shortcut?
I do not think that is a false shortcut.
Seeking the guidance or counsel of the Holy Spirit regarding the Divine Logos which reveals the Father is a suitable method of access into the Trinity. The other way would be to approach Jesus as the Door and ask Him to pray the Father to send you the Spirit of Truth that you may be lead into all Truth and have the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit dwell within you by invoking them and beseeching their presence earnestly with a humble and pure heart, free from distractions and attentive to the Sacred Scripture.
The written word of God is an excellent means of communicating with the uncreated Word of God, our Lord Jesus Christ. The life of communion with the All Holy Undivided Trinity is accomplished through grace and the divine indwelling by which you are made a temple of the Holy Spirit, where the Great High Priest, our Lord Jesus Christ offers fragrant prayers upon the altar of your heart and the love of the Father is poured into you live dew from heaven that you may be cleansed and sanctified as a holy temple dedicated to God, a house of prayer not made with hands.

The Life of the Divine Trinity is best understood through indwelling, inspiration and inflowing and infusion. God, the Holy Trinity dwells within you to the degree that you prepare yourself through kenosis or self-emptying. Examination of conscience, prayers for contrition and desire of grace and prayers for inspiration and understanding and prayers for inflowing of divine love and infusion of virtues and holy contemplation are good practices.
Prayer is broken into two forms: mystical or God-inspired and acquired or discursive prayer that is intellectually driven. The integration of Scripture into one's life is the process of reading, it is this process of meditation that inscribes the Sacred Word upon the tablet of the heart, where the finger of the Holy Spirit inspires living devotion and gives ample means to fulfill what God has put into your heart to accomplish. The Life, that is Christ, which abides in the soul is the fountain of all meditation, contemplation and satisfaction.
While we can prepare for discursive or acquired prayer by mental practices, memorization, and understanding the skopos or goal of the methods we employ they cannot be compared to the dignity and sublimity of mystical prayer which we we ought to desire with all spirit longing. For, mystical prayer is the prayer of the Holy Spirit within us, over which we have no power to force or even to equal. Though we may always raise ourselves up, by degrees, with acts of faith, hope and love, acts of desire and contrition, acts of worship and acts of praise and acts of supplication. These pious acts and holy inspirations we ought to pray for, long for, wait for and be desirous of and to savor with all sweetness when they are divinely bestowed upon the dryness of the soul. For God causes the growth even though one man sowed and another watered. For the Sun of Righteousness is the fountain of eternal Light and from Him does the vine ripen and the grape glisten with interior sweetness, made rich by the abundance of life giving sap, drawn from the Holy Root of the Blessed Seed.
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CRUX SANCTI PATRIS BENEDICTI
CRUX SACRA SIT MIHI LUX!
NON DRACO SIT MIHI DUX!
VADE RETRO SATANA!
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IPSE VENENA BIBAS!
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For God Is Greater Than All Things!
Alleluia!
Alleluia!
Alleluia!
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