Morning Prayer

Sunday Morning Prayer, Week IV

Sunday Morning Prayer, Week IV

Every morning at 5:00 the alarm goes off to remind me of the beginning of a new day.  A drowsy climb out of bed, slippers and robe on for the trek downstairs, a cup of coffee and off to our prayer corner.  Sherry joins me each morning and we break open Book of Christian Prayer and pray Morning Prayer, aka Lauds, from the Liturgy of the Hours.

This is a prayer that is prayed all over the world, mostly by clergy, but also by a fair number of lay people like us.  The Divine Office, another name, is offered 7 times a day, beginning with Vigils in the darkness between sunset and sunrise.  It’s a wonderful discipline, joining in people all over in praising God, each and every day.  Since it takes place all over, it takes place all the time, too.  When we pray the Divine Office, it’s not like we are starting anew – we are just joining in the multitudes of people and the choirs of angels, singing “Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of Hosts!”

I started this practice shortly after coming to work for our Diocese.  I was seeing our bishop, priests and deacons carrying these books around that I thought were Bibles.  A little inquiry taught me that while they were filled with Scripture, they were not Bibles.  Rather, they are an incredibly rich source of prayer that offers praise to God, morning, noon and night.  To think that I could join in this chorus was almost unbelievable.  I obtained a copy and off I went.

Several years ago, Sherry and I joined some friends for a trip to the Philippines.  I packed my book in a side pocket of my camera bag, and promptly lost it on the flight from Los Angeles to Seoul, South Korea.  I didn’t realize it was gone until I got to our destination in San Carlos, and I was sure I would never see it again.  I made it through the trip by borrowing a book from a seminarian, then ordering a new one when I got home.  About a week after the new edition arrived, I received a phone call from United Airlines.  The found my book and tracked me down.  The only identification I had in it was my name – no address, phone, etc.  They had to work to find me, and they did.  We were reunited shortly thereafter.

Now Sherry and I pray the Divine Office every morning.  How glorious it is to be with the woman I love more than anyone in the world, watching the night turn to day, and praising God in His glory!

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