Morning Prayer

Morning Prayer

When our pastor is not available for daily Mass, we have the tradition of praying Morning Prayer with Eucharist.

What is Morning Prayer?

Morning prayer is part of the Liturgy of the Hours, or Divine Office, an ancient tradition of the Church that reaches all the way back to the year 200.

The purpose of the Divine Office is to sanctify the day and all human activity.

To help Christians follow the directive to "pray withouot ceasing" (1 Th 5:16-17), they were encouraged to pray not only morning and evening, but also to use the 3rd, 6th, and 9th hours of the day as reminders to pray. Later, St. Benedict laid ouot specific guidelines that became widely used by the monastic traditions, where nine periods of prayer were identified, including Matins (at sunrise), Prime (during the first hour of daylight), and Vespers (at the end of the day).

Bishops, priests, deacons, and many in the consecrated life pray the Liturgy of the Hours each day, organizing their work around their prayer, and keeping God at the center of their lives. Lay people are encouraged to pray the Liturgy of the Hours, too, particularly morning and evening prayer; it is for all of us, "the prayer of the Church."

A Renewed Practice of Morning Prayer

The "prayer of the Church" goes on throughout the day and night in vowed communities all over the world, and we are bathed in this constant prayer of the body of Christ. This is our invitation to immerse ourselves in that prayer.

The Liturgy of the Hours (also known as the Divine Office) is the richest single prayer resource of the Christian Church. It provides prayers, psalms and meditation for every hour of every day. It has existed from the earliest times, to fulfill the Lord's command to pray without ceasing.

To learn more, try these sites:

www.usccb.org
www.yale.edu
www.usccb.org
www.universalis.com