Since I’ve started writing about the practice of Bible journaling, I’ve been asked by many Catholics how they can practice this meditative art, this lingering over God’s Word. They want to use their artistic ability whether it be traditional pen and paper journaling or creating art work. The problem is, there is not a Catholic Journaling Bible. Well, there is one journaling Bible that includes all the books of the Bible, but it is no longer in print. You can find them on Amazon, but they can get pricey. So until a Catholic journaling Bible comes out, and believe me, I have contacted Catholic Bible publishers letting them know this is a need, I have some ideas for you who are interested in Catholic Bible journaling.
*August 17, 2016 Update: I’ve written a book, Bible Journaling Tips, Inspiration and Permission, to encourage and inspire you in your Bible journaling!
Catholic Bible Journaling
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So you want to enter the world of Catholic Bible journaling but a Catholic journaling Bible doesn’t exists, what now? I have a couple of suggestions and tips for you. See the picture above? It’s from an adult coloring book I gifted myself this Epiphany, Faith in Color: An Adult Coloring Book I love it! Some of them are way too detailed, like I would have to put on my glasses just to color–that doesn’t sound calm and relaxing to me. But this one is a great mix of “easy” to more advanced.
I sat down last weekend to color as a fun, relaxing Sunday kind of thing to do. I chose this page because it contained a scripture verse that I had just heard at Mass earlier in the day. So I’m coloring and thinking about the reading and I remembered how beautiful I thought the Gradual had been, “The Lord sent His word, and healed them: and delivered them from their destruction. Let the mercies of the Lord give glory to Him: and his wonderful works to the children of men.” †Psalm 106:20-21 Meditating on the verse I was coloring and considering the lovely verses used in the Gradual…I was suddenly struck with an idea.
What if I somehow incorporated these two in my Bible for Bible journaling? I have this love and desire to use Washi tape any chance I get…I have this beautiful coloring page…so I finished coloring, taking my time to let these words, THE WORD of God, fill my heart and mind with thoughts of Him. After I was finished, I tore the coloring page out and went to put it into my Bible using Washi tape and then the plan was to somehow connect it to the Gradual reading taken from the Psalm. Problem…
The coloring page was too big to fit nicely into my Bible. So the first lesson I learned, next time I will make a copy of the picture and decrease it’s copied size. This is a great idea because 1. it will fit in my Bible easily 2. I can color the picture again because I still have the original in my coloring book.
I still wanted to use Washi tape to adhere this coloring page into my Bible so I just folded the page in half so it would fit. Once I folded it, I wrote out the Gradual on some of the blank space. Next time I will probably try my hand at some lovely hand lettering for this part of the Bible journaling.
The rest of my tips for Catholic Bible journaling are along the same lines. Just because there aren’t large margins in your Bible to take notes, journal thoughts or prayers or create beautiful art word while meditating on God’s Word, doesn’t mean you can’t practice the art and discipline of Bible jouraling. You can always add your reflections or art work using my favorite…Washi tape!
Adult coloring books are perfect for those of us who think our artistic abilities are sorely lacking. If not being able to transfer the lovely art from your mind to your page is troublesome to you, maybe even stopping you from Bible journaling, then purchase an adult coloring book. Make the page your own; you could even add to it if you like, and then adhere it into your Bible using my favorite…Washi tape.
I hope this post has given you some encouragement and ideas for Catholic Bible journaling. If you have any others, please share in the comments.
*Edited to add, my new favorite way to practice Bible Journaling is using a Travelers Notebook!