What is a St. Raphael meditation?
Following the example of St. Josemaria, spiritual formation activities organised by Opus Dei for young people are placed under the spiritual patronage of the archangel St. Raphael, meaning they are entrusted to this angel's intercession in a special way. (For more on the first time St. Josemaria was inspired to entrust activities for young people to St. Raphael in October 1932, read here.)
In each center hosting St. Raphael activities, there is usually at least one meditation a week preached by the priest. The meditation is a time of guided prayer based on a text from the Gospel, the liturgy of the day, and so on.
Prayer is a requirement of Christian life: "Living contact with Christ is the decisive help in continuing on the right path [...]. The person who prays does not waste his time, even if everything makes one think of an emergency situation and seems to impel only action." That is why the pedagogy of the art of prayer will always be an educational priority in the work of St. Raphael.
Where possible, the meditation is usually held on Saturdays, the day traditionally dedicated to Our Lady, as a manifestation of love for the Mother of God. As well, where possible, the meditation is followed by the exposition and blessing with the Blessed Sacrament and the singing of the Salve Regina or another Marian hymn, according to the liturgical season. It is one more expression of the central place of the Eucharist in the Church.