Breviary

Daytime Prayers

INTRODUCTION

God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

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. Alleluia.

HYMN

At Midmorning

From all that dwell below the skies
Let the Creator’s praise arise:
Let the Redeemer’s name be sung
Through every land, by every tongue.
     Halleluia!

Eternal are thy mercies, Lord;
Eternal truth attends thy word:
Thy praise shall sound from shore to shore,
Till suns shall rise and set no more.
     Halleluia!

Tune: Erschienen ist der herrliche Tag or Eisenach L.M. with halleluia
Music: Nicholaus Hermann, 1560 or Johann Schein, 1583-1630
Text: Isaac Watts, 1719


At Midday

Lord of all being, throned afar,
Your glory flames from sun and star;
Center and soul of every sphere,
And yet to loving hearts how near.

Sun of our life, your living ray
Sheds on our path the glow of day;
Star of our hope, your gentle light
Shall ever cheer the longest night.

Lord of all life, below, above,
Whose light is truth, whose warmth is love;
Before the brilliance of your throne
We ask no luster of our own.

Give us your grace to make us true,
And kindling hearts that burn for you,
Till all your living altars claim
One holy light, one heavenly flame.

Tune: Uffingham L.M.
Music: Jeremiah Clarke, 1659-1707
Text: Oliver Wendell Holmes, 1809-1894


At Midafternoon

Most ancient of all mysteries,
Before your throne we lie;
Have mercy now, most merciful,
Most holy Trinity.

When heaven and earth were still unmade,
When time was yet unknown,
You in your radiant majesty
Did live and love alone.

You were not born, there was no source
From which your Being flowed;
There is no end which you can reach,
For you are simply God.

How wonderful creation is,
The work which you did bless;
What then must you be like, dear God,
Eternal loveliness!

Most ancient of all mysteries,
Before your throne we lie;
Have mercy now, most merciful,
Most holy Trinity.

Tune: St. Flavian C.M.
Music: John Day in John Day’s Psalter, 1562
Text: Frederick W. Faber, 1814-1863

PSALMODY

Antiphons

Midmorning:
This is the good news the prophets foretold: The Savior will be born of the Virgin Mary.

Midday: The angel Gabriel said to Mary in greeting: Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women.

Midafternoon: Mary said: My soul is deeply troubled; what can this greeting mean? Am I to give birth to my King and yet remain a virgin for ever?

Go to the Complementary Psalmody

Psalm 119:57-64
VIII (Heth)

A meditation on God’s law


This is my new commandment: that you should love one another (John 15:12).

My part, I have resolved, O Lord, *
is to obey your word.
With all my heart I implore your favor; *
show the mercy of your promise.

I have pondered over my ways *
and returned to your will.
I made haste and did not delay *
to obey your commands.

Though the nets of the wicked ensnared me *
I remembered your law.
At midnight I will rise and thank you *
for your just decrees.

I am a friend of all who revere you, *
who obey your precepts.
Lord, your love fills the earth. *
Teach me your commands.

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, may the fulfillment of your law be our aim in life, so that you yourself may be our inheritance, and we your chosen possession for ever.

Psalm 55:2-15, 17-24
Against a friend proved traitor


Jesus was seized with fear and distress (Mark 14:33).

I

O God, listen to my prayer, *
do not hide from my pleading,
attend to me and reply; *
with my cares, I cannot rest.

I tremble at the shouts of the foe, *
at the cries of the wicked;
for they bring down evil upon me. *
They assail me with fury.

My heart is stricken within me, *
death’s terror is on me,
trembling and fear fall upon me *
and horror overwhelms me.

O that I had wings like a dove *
to fly away and be at rest.
So I would escape far away *
and take refuge in the desert.

I would hasten to find a shelter *
from the raging wind,
from the destructive storm, O Lord, *
and from their plotting tongues.

For I can see nothing but violence *
and strife in the city.
Night and day they patrol *
high on the city walls.

It is full of wickedness and evil; *
it is full of sin.
Its streets are never free *
from tyranny and deceit.

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.

II

If this had been done by an enemy *
I could bear his taunts.
If a rival had risen against me, *
I could hide from him.

But it is you, my own companion, *
my intimate friend!
How close was the friendship between us.
We walked together in harmony *
in the house of God.

As for me, I will cry to God *
and the Lord will save me.
Evening, morning and at noon *
I will cry and lament.

He will deliver my soul in peace *
in the attack against me:
for those who fight me are many, *
but he hears my voice.

God will hear and will humble them, *
the eternal judge:
for they will not amend their ways. *
They have no fear of God.

The traitor has turned against his friends; *
he has broken his word.
His speech is softer than butter, *
but war is in his heart.
His words are smoother than oil, *
but they are naked swords.

Entrust your cares to the Lord *
and he will support you.
He will never allow *
the just man to stumble.

But you, O God, will bring them down *
to the pit of death.
Deceitful and bloodthirsty men *
shall not live half their days.

O Lord, I will trust in you.

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 were rejected by your people, betrayed by the kiss of a friend, and deserted by your disciples. Give us the confidence that you had in the Father, and our salvation will be assured.



Continue with Daytime Prayer


COMPLEMENTARY PSALMODY

Go to Series II (Midday)

Go to Series III (Midafternoon)

Series I (Midmorning)

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.

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.

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.

Continue with Daytime Prayer


Series II (Midday)

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.

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.

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.

Continue with Daytime Prayer


Series III (Midafternoon)

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.

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.

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.


Antiphons

Midmorning:
This is the good news the prophets foretold: The Savior will be born of the Virgin Mary.

Midday: The angel Gabriel said to Mary in greeting: Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you; blessed are you among women.

Midafternoon: Mary said: My soul is deeply troubled; what can this greeting mean? Am I to give birth to my King and yet remain a virgin for ever?

MIDMORNING

READING
See Isaiah 2:11-12


The haughty eyes of man will be lowered,
   the arrogance of men will be abased,
   and the Lord alone will be exalted, on that day.

The nations will revere your name, O Lord.
And the great ones of the earth will acknowledge your glory.

Go to the Acclamation

MIDDAY

READING
Isaiah 12:2


God indeed is my savior;
   I am confident and unafraid.
My strength and my courage is the Lord,
   and he has been my savior.

Remember us, Lord, because of the love you have for your people.
Come and bring us your salvation.

Go to the Acclamation

MIDAFTERNOON

READING
Daniel 9:19


O Lord, hear! O Lord, pardon! O Lord, be attentive and act without delay, for your own sake, O my God, because this city and your people bear your name!

Come, Lord, do not delay.
Free your people from their sinfulness.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

All-powerful Father,
we await the healing power of Christ your Son.
Let us not be discouraged by our weaknesses
as we prepare for his coming.
Keep us steadfast in your love.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Or:

Almighty God, who command us
to prepare the way for Christ the Lord,
grant in your kindness, we pray,
that no infirmity may weary us
as we long for the comforting presence
of our heavenly physician.
Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Amen.

ACCLAMATION

Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.

******

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