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Prayers

Complementary Psalmody (Gradual Psalms)

COMPLEMENTARY PSALMODY
FOR MIDMORNING, MIDDAY,
AND MIDAFTERNOON

After the Introduction and Hymn, the Gradual Psalms, which follow, are said, with their antiphon.

Go to Series II (Midday)

Go to Series III (Midafternoon)

Series I (Midmorning)

Ant. 1 I cried out, and the Lord heard me.

Psalm 120
Longing for peace


Be patient in suffering, be constant in prayer (Romans 12:12).

To the Lord in the hour of my distress *
I call and he answers me.
“O Lord, save my soul from lying lips, *
from the tongue of the deceitful.”

What shall he pay you in return, *
O treacherous tongue?
The warrior’s arrows sharpened *
and coals, red-hot, blazing.

Alas, that I abide a stranger in Meshech, *
dwell among the tents of Kedar!

Long enough have I been dwelling *
with those who hate peace.
I am for peace, but when I speak, *
they are for fighting.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

You declared peacemakers happy, Lord Jesus, since they will be called sons of God. Give us that peace which the world cannot give so that your Church may be freed from the schemes of arrogant men, and, devoted to works of peace, go forward joyfully to meet you, the King of Peace.

Ant. I cried out, and the Lord heard me.

Ant. 2 May the Lord watch over you as you come and as you go.

Psalm 121
Guardian of his people


Never again will they hunger and thirst, never again know scorching heat (Revelation 7:16).

I lift up my eyes to the mountains: *
from where shall come my help?
My help shall come from the Lord *
who made heaven and earth.

May he never allow you to stumble! *
Let him sleep not, your guard.
No, he sleeps not nor slumbers, *
Israel’s guard.

The Lord is your guard and your shade; *
at your right side he stands.
By day the sun shall not smite you *
nor the moon in the night.

The Lord will guard you from evil, *
he will guard your soul.
The Lord will guard your going and coming *
both now and for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Lord Jesus Christ, you have prepared a quiet place for us in your Father’s eternal home. Watch over our welfare on this perilous journey, shade us from the burning heat of day, and keep our lives free of evil until the end.

Ant. May the Lord watch over you as you come and as you go.

Ant. 3 I rejoiced in the good news they told me.

Psalm 122
The holy city, Jerusalem


You have come to Mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem (Hebrews 12:22).

I rejoiced when I heard them say: *
“Let us go to God’s house.”
And now our feet are standing *
within your gates, O Jerusalem.

Jerusalem is built as a city *
strongly compact.
It is there that the tribes go up, *
the tribes of the Lord.

For Israel’s law it is, *
there to praise the Lord’s name.
There were set the thrones of judgement *
of the house of David.

For the peace of Jerusalem pray: *
“Peace be to your homes!
May peace reign in your walls, *
in your palaces, peace!”

For love of my brethren and friends *
I say: “Peace upon you!”
For love of the house of the Lord *
I will ask for your good.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

When you rose from the dead, Lord Jesus, you formed the Church into your new body, and made of it the new Jerusalem, united in your Spirit. Give us peace in our day. Make all nations come to your Church to share in your gifts in fellowship, that they may render you thanks without end and come to your eternal city.

Ant. I rejoiced in the good news they told me.


Series II (Midday)

Ant. 1 You dwell in the heavens; have mercy on us.

Psalm 123
The Lord is the hope of his people


Two blind men cried out: “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on us” (Matthew 20:30).

To you have I lifted up my eyes, *
you who dwell in the heavens:
my eyes, like the eyes of slaves *
on the hand of their lords.

Like the eyes of a servant *
on the hand of her mistress,
so our eyes are on the Lord our God *
till he show us his mercy.

Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy. *
We are filled with contempt.
Indeed all too full is our soul
with the scorn of the rich, *
with the proud man’s disdain.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Father in heaven, we lift our eyes to you and pray: confound the scorn of the proud and graciously show us your mercy.

Ant. You dwell in the heavens; have mercy on us.

Ant. 2 Our help is in the name of the Lord.

Psalm 124
Our help is in the name of the Lord


The Lord said to Paul:  “Fear not. . . . I am with you” (Acts 18:9-10).

“If the Lord had not been on our side,” *
this is Israel’s song.
“If the Lord had not been on our side *
when men rose against us,
then would they have swallowed us alive *
when their anger was kindled.

Then would the waters have engulfed us, *
the torrent gone over us;
over our head would have swept *
the raging waters.”

Blessed be the Lord who did not give us *
a prey to their teeth!
Our life, like a bird, has escaped *
from the snare of the fowler.

Indeed the snare has been broken *
and we have escaped.
Our help is in the name of the Lord, *
who made heaven and earth.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Lord Jesus, you foretold that your disciples would be despised on account of your name, but that not a hair of their heads is ever forgotten. In times of persecution, defend and revive us by the power and comfort of the Holy Spirit, so that we can be freed from our enemies and praise your saving help.

Ant. Our help is in the name of the Lord.

Ant. 3 The Lord surrounds his people with love, now and for ever.

Psalm 125
The Lord, the guardian of his people


Peace to God’s true Israel (Galatians 6:16).

Those who put their trust in the Lord
are like Mount Zion, that cannot be shaken, *
that stands for ever.

Jerusalem!  The mountains surround her,
so the Lord surrounds his people *
both now and for ever.

For the scepter of the wicked shall not rest *
over the land of the just
for fear that the hands of the just *
should turn to evil.

Do good, Lord, to those who are good, *
to the upright of heart;
but the crooked and those who do evil, *
drive them away!

On Israel, peace!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Surround your people, Lord, within the safety of your Church, which you preserve on its rock foundation. Do not let us stretch out our hands to evil deeds, nor be destroyed by the insidious snares of the enemy, but bring us to share the lot of the saints in light.

Ant. The Lord surrounds his people with love, now and for ever.


Series III (Midafternoon)

Ant. 1 The Lord has done great things for us; he is the source of all our joy.

Psalm 126
Joyful hope in God


Companions with him in suffering, you will share his overflowing happiness (2 Corinthians 1:7).

When the Lord delivered Zion from bondage, *
it seemed like a dream.
Then was our mouth filled with laughter, *
on our lips there were songs.

The heathens themselves said:  “What marvels *
the Lord worked for them!”
What marvels the Lord worked for us! *
Indeed we were glad.

Deliver us, O Lord, from our bondage *
as streams in dry land.
Those who are sowing in tears *
will sing when they reap.

They go out, they go out, full of tears, *
carrying seed for the sowing:
they come back, they come back, full of song, *
carrying their sheaves.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Lord, you have raised us from the earth; may you let the seeds of justice, which we have sown in tears, grow and increase in your sight. May we reap in joy the harvest we hope for patiently.

Ant. The Lord has done great things for us; he is the source of all our joy.

Ant. 2 May the Lord build our house and watch over our city.

Psalm 127
Apart from God our labors are worthless


You are God’s building (1 Corinthians 3:9).

If the Lord does not build the house, *
in vain do its builders labor;
if the Lord does not watch over the city, *
in vain does the watchman keep vigil.

In vain is your earlier rising, *
your going later to rest,
you who toil for the bread you eat: *
when he pours gifts on his beloved while they slumber.

Truly sons are a gift from the Lord, *
a blessing, the fruit of the womb.
Indeed the sons of youth *
are like arrows in the hand of  a warrior.

O the happiness of the man *
who has filled his quiver with these arrows!
He will have no cause for shame *
when he disputes with his foes in the gateways.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

You command the seed to rise, Lord God, though the farmer is unaware. Grant that those who labor for you may trust not in their own work but in your help. Remembering that the land is brought to flower not with human tears but with those of your Son, may the Church rely only upon your gifts.

Ant. May the Lord build our house and watch over our city.

Ant. 3 Blessed are those who fear the Lord.

Psalm 128
Happiness of family life rooted in God


“May the Lord bless you from Zion,” that is, from the Church (Arnobius).

O blessed are those who fear the Lord *
and walk in his ways!

By the labor of your hands you shall eat. *
You will be happy and prosper;
your wife like a fruitful vine *
in the heart of your house;
your children like shoots of the olive, *
around your table.

Indeed thus shall be blessed *
the man who fears the Lord.
May the Lord bless you from Zion *
all the days of your life!
May you see your children’s children *
in a happy Jerusalem!

On Israel, peace!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Give lasting happiness, Lord, to those who reverence your name, so that our life and work may be such as to deserve your commendation, and bring us, laden with good fruit, to our everlasting home.

Ant. Blessed are those who fear the Lord.

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