The Divine Office eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 261 pages of information about The Divine Office.

  OF MATINS (vide pages 4, 120).

  “Matutina ligat Christum qui crimina purgat.” 
  “Although I should die with Thee, I will not deny Thee.” 
  “And in like manner also said they all.” 
  “Pray, lest you enter into temptation,”
  “And being in agony He prayed the longer.” 
  “Friend, whereunto art thou come?—­”
  “And they holding Jesus led Him away”—­the Garden. 
  “Art thou one of His disciples?”
  “My kingdom is not of this world”—­Before the High Priest.

General Intentions:-Exaltation of the Church; the Pope; the Mission to the heathen; Christian nations; the conversion of the heretics, infidels and sinners; the Catholic laity; the Catholic priesthood.

Personal Intentions:-Lively faith; a greater hope; ardent charity.

Special Intentions:-For parents; for benefactors; for those in sorrow; dying sinners; deceased priests of Ireland; for the conversion of England; for vocations to the priesthood.



Etymology, Definition, Symbolism.  The word “Lauds” is derived from the Latin laus, praise.  It is applied to this Hour, as it is par excellence, the hour in which God’s praises are chanted by His Church.  This Hour succeeds Matins and precedes Prime.  The name is said to have been given to this Hour on account of the last three Psalms, which formerly formed part of the Office.  In these Psalms, 148, 149, 150, the word Laudate recurs several times.  Before the eighth century the Hour was called “Matutinum,” or morning Office, and sometimes it was called Gallicinum or Galli cantus from being recited at cock-crow.  This is the Office of daybreak and hence its symbolism is of Christ’s resurrection.  “Christ, the light of the world, rose from the tomb on Easter morning, like a radiant sun, trampling over darkness and shedding His brightness upon the earth.  The hymns, psalms, antiphons and versicles of Lauds, all proclaim the mystery of Christ’s Resurrection, and the light which enlightens our souls.  The reform of the Psalter in 1911 has not always preserved this liturgical idea; nevertheless, the character of the Office has not been altered.  Lauds remains the true morning prayer, which hails in the rising sun, the image of Christ triumphant—­consecrates to Him the opening day.  No other morning prayer is comparable to this” (Dom.  F. Cabrol, The Day Hours of the Church, London, 1910).

Antiquity.  The Christians, in their night vigils, followed the pious practices of the Jews, as to prayers at dead of night and at dawn, Hence, the Hour, Lauds is of great antiquity, coming, perhaps, from Apostolic times.  It is found well established in the very earliest accounts of Christian liturgy.

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The Divine Office from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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