Back in January we looked at ways to upgrade our prayer life.
Those were all great resources. I know my prayer life has been enriched.
But we didn’t even touch on The Liturgy of the Hours.
In case you are not familiar, The Liturgy of the Hours (or Divine Office) are the prayers that priests are required to pray every day.
They go all the way back to the time of Jesus and are comprised of psalms, hymns, and prayers. They vary based on the day and time of day … all of which are planned out.
The thing is, The Liturgy of the Hours is not just for priests.
In fact, the Second Vatican Council highly recommended the laity pray The Liturgy of the Hours too.
This week’s issue of Genuflect is dedicated to The Liturgy of the Hours … what it is, why we should pray them, how the prayers are structured, some tools to help along the way, and most importantly how to get started.
If last time upgraded your prayer life … this week is going to supercharge it!
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The Liturgy of the Hours, aka The Divine Office, aka the breviary, is a collection of daily psalms, prayers, and scripture readings that has been part of the Church’s liturgical prayer life almost from it’s very beginnings. Read more about what exactly it is.
If you pray the Divine Office, perhaps this will be an inspiration to carry on. If you don’t yet pray it, or need encouragement to begin to strengthen your commitment to regular prayer, then I hope the following reasons will be helpful for you.
The Divine Office (aka the Liturgy of the Hours) is a prayer that is designed to unite the entire Church in prayer and has the capacity to truly deepen a person’s prayer life. Here are 5 reasons why you should consider praying the divine office daily.
This resource explains each of the different hours of Divine Office, times for prayer, and some of the historical changes.
This resource discusses the timing for the Divine Office prayers as well as explains the Invitatory Psalm that begins each prayer hour.
This is an informal summary of the General Instruction on the Liturgy of the Hours. The full text can be found in most breviaries (at the start of Vol. 1 of multi-volume sets).
All right. You want to start praying the liturgy of the hours. The Church recommends that the laity use Morning and Evening Prayer to begin, calling these two hours the “hinges” of the liturgical day. But for those in the just-starting- and not-so-sure-I can-handle-this- category, Daria Sockey recommends you hold off on the “hinge” thing for a while. Instead, begin with the hour of Night Prayer. Here’s why … and how to begin.
Daria Sockey will help you decide which breviary you might want to use. First decision: digital or traditional printed breviary.
iBreviary “Pro Terra Sancta” is free and available for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad Mini as well as Android and Blackberry. The newest version of the iBreviary (full of great new features) is available to download on the website, as well as on the App Store and Google Play
Universalis offers several apps for computers, phones, and tablets to make praying the Liturgy of the Hours daily easier. Most versions offer a free trial with prices ranging from $11 to $25.
If you prefer to have a physical book of the Divine Office prayers or a printed guide to follow along, check out the huge selection available from The Catholic Company. (Please note that this is an affiliate link and any sales made through the link may reward me a small commission – at no extra cost for you. I only recommend products I trust.)
Prayer Inspiration For Your Desktop And Phone
Click below to download this week’s free inspirational prayer wallpaper for your desktop and your phone. Or download one of the previous wallpapers.
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