…I would begin by realizing that it is the Word of God–that is, Scriptures are not just some books put together as a collection of reading material…
Consider that the prayer factor is to inspire/request the Guidance of the Holy Spirit–it is He, the Lord, Giver of Life, Who Knows God’s Mind and can Reveal things to us.
Do not attempt to solve all the queries you may have (or which others may bring up) in any reading/study segment/s.
Find a rhythm–set a time/schedule; get to know one book (preferably a Gospel–I love St. John’s); go back to Scriptures as many times as necessary (using a concordance and a dictionary–not necessarily a Bible dictionary) if a particular passage is troublesome to you.
Post questions on this and/or other Catholic sites that would help you understand or expand on what you’ve been learning…
Remember, prayer is to enable–it can be something as concise as: ‘Please, Holy Spirit, Guide me.’
…as to where to start? It depends upon you… how much time can you make available for Bible study? What are your interests? Do you want to read the whole Bible in a year or less? Do you want to address topical issues?
There’s usually a guide for Bible Study (free on-line/downloadable) and even Bible Studies that you can download–just make sure that you check that it is a Catholic Bible Study/Guide to avoid confusing/conflicting teachings/findings.
If you like my assistance drop a PM with your topics/queries, I would be more than glad to help.
An older book which I found helpful is the Handbook to the Gospels by (then) Fr. John Wijngaards*. It is sub-titled “A Guide to the Gospel Writings and to the Life and Times of Jesus.” It gives a historical and cultural context to our faith, describing the religious, political and cultural conditions under which our Lord lived and taught. It describes the temple and its role in Jewish life, as well as the common items used in everyday life so as to give meaning to their mention (i.e. lampstand) in the bible.
One caution: John Wijngaards went on to be laicized and married in later years, as he developed a dissident attitude. A trace of that may be seen in his book, but it is clearly identifiable as his opinion.
Finally I would say as far as the Psalms, your could read one psalm before you start your daily reading and one when you finish as a prayer. I would not read the entire book of Psalms straight through.
Christians with many years of studying the Bible find in this book a lot of new,
and even after many years of studying the Scripture the the Bible students ask questions.
Biblical commentaries of the Church are very important as they help to find the answers.
This is (as many here suspect) a simply excellent idea. The daily emails follow the Church’s liturgical year, and the Psalms and Old Testament readings relate to and parallel the Gospel - being from the daily mass. The USCCB emails contain a link to an audio version which you can listen to while you busy yourself around the house, for example.
Not really liking the NAB/RE, I read the scriptures from a Confraternity, Knox or other bible at hand.
Would have to say have found recieving the Bible through daily mass the most beneficial way, where the Old and New testaments are carefully arranged to shed light on each other and be witness to each other, though you would need to attend daily mass for three years to recieve close to the complete readings. A well composed homily on the readings is always a delight Keep in mind that all readings contain truth but Christ is needed to reveal the whole truth of sacred scripture, and that neither scripture, faith, grace, tradition or anything else is working alone to bring about salvation, but working together in some way to save us. Whatever, reading Sacred Scripture is one of the greatest journeys you’ll ever undertake, the width and breath and height of which is immense. It is worth treating the physical book with respect and buying a nice cover to enclose it, and have it blessed for good measure. Oh, and make sure it’s one of the Catholic Bibles, read up on the different versions used by the Chruch.
I highly recommend The EWTN series Our Father’s Plan which lays out the basics of
understanding the Bible from beginning to end using only 14 books of the Bible to lead
you through the twelve periods contained in Scripture. After you have done that you can
begin to add other books of the Bible to your Scripture study after having been set on
a solid foundation.
“This 13-program series, featuring Dr. Scott Hahn and Jeff Cavins, walks through salvation history from Genesis to the formation of the Catholic Church using the chronological narrative of the Bible. Each session gives the broad overview of Bible history by breaking the Scriptures into 12 periods, followed by an in-depth discussion with Scott Hahn. 7 discs. 13 hrs.”