Resources for the Liturgy of the Hours

Resources for the Liturgy of the Hours

First, you absolutely must visit Coffee and Canticles, a wonderful new blog dedicated to the Liturgy of the Hours. Daria is a Catholic mom, not any kind of expert. But to my mind that makes her the perfect person to speak to other moms. Sometimes expertise is helpful; at other times it rather gets in the way. The expert can be so steeped in the material he knows that he forgets how to relate it to his audience.

I love her very useful Divine Office Boot Camp and other How To posts that break it down into short, useful lessons in the nitty gritty of the mechanics of navigating the materials.

I love asides like this one because I do the exact same thing:

In fact, I’ll tell you a secret. I don’t always pray the Invitatory psalm before Morning prayer. Since I know it by heart I often say it as I’m getting out of bed in the morning. Later, when I do morning prayer, I open with “O God come to my assistance…”  This custom of mine is not in the rubrics. It’s just my way of getting into the day’s office well before I go downstairs and figure out where I left my breviary. Luckily we lay folk are not bound to do everything according to regulation. In fact we are encouraged to adapt the Divine Office to our situation.

I’ve also enjoyed some of her thoughts on the Psalms that she’s shared. If you pray the office for any length of time, you begin to develop your favorites. I find that hearing about particular psalms or verses that speak to someone else often gives me new appreciation for those psalms or verses, helps me to see them in a new way. It’s a great way to realize that we are all in this together, praying as one body, and that words that feel empty to me may very well be exactly what someone else needs to nourish them today.

Daria also writes helpful posts answering possible objections the newcomer might have:

Have I gushed enough? Convinced you to put her blog on your list of must reads yet? There’s so much more there that I haven’t shared. You really should go check it out for yourself.

A few more items I’ve gleaned in recent weeks:

In the same vein of mom bloggers posting about the psalms, Misty’s Mornings recently wrote about finding new relevance in a psalm that had previously baffled her: Praying the Psalms {Psalm 60}. I love those moments of insight! 

At Abigail’s Alcove, my favorite Third Order Carmelite mommy blogger, offers some advice on how to pray the Liturgy of the Hours.

Praying with the Cosmos, the first in a series of posts about the divine office at The Way of Beauty blog (HT Amy Welborn):

If we pray in harmony with rhythms and patterns of the cosmos, especially the cycles of the the sun, the moon and the stars, then the whole person, body and soul, is conforming to the order of heaven. The daily repetitions, the weekly, monthly and season cycles of the liturgy allow us to do just that. In his book, the Spirit of the Liturgy, Pope Benedict XVI calls our apprehension of this order, when we see the beauty of Creation a glimpse into �the mind of the Creator�. This conformity in prayer opens us up so that we are drawing in the breath of the Spirit, so to speak, as God chooses to exhale. It increases our receptivity to inspiration and God�s consoling grace and leads us more deeply into the mystery of the Mass.

Part 2: How all human work can be inspired; Part 3: Prayer of the Heart � How to Engage the Whole Person in Prayer.
(These posts are a little more formal and academic in tone and are perhaps not so friendly to beginners; but offer some beautiful insights into The Liturgy of the Hours.)

The Chant Cafe invites you to Sing Compline for Lent. While I don’t find this quite basic enough for me (a complete non-singer) to pick up and sing the Office, I’m sure someone will find it helpful.

St. Francis de Sales� four steps for putting yourself in the presence of God.

This blog post from Jennifer at Conversion Diary is particularly timely for me. When I discussed my prayer life in my last confession, one of the questions Father asked me was whether I spent time putting myself in the presence of God before I began praying. I had to admit I often skip this smal but important step. I’ve been trying to be more mindful of it. These four tips from St Francis de Sales that Jen shares are invaluable. I’m glad she posted them because I’ve been meaning to go look them up and haven’t had the chance to do so

For further reference, here’s a list of my previous Liturgy of the Hours posts.


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