Morning Prayer (from the Dominican Priory of St. Michael the Archangel (Blackfriars), Cambridge)

Since we are totally dependent upon God, we must acknowledge and confess his dominion over us, continually giving him an unending sacrifice of praise. To that end, from the earliest days of the Church, Christians have devoted themselves to prayer at certain hours, especially at the first hour of the day when the rising sun dispelled the last shadow of night. In Morning Prayer we consecrate the day to God and give praise to him, particularly celebrating the resurrection of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

After a short introduction (or an opening psalm inviting us to prayer), Morning Prayer begins with a hymn, followed by a psalm associated with morning, a canticle from elsewhere in the Old Testament and a psalm of praise. Then follows a short reading, a response to the reading and the climax of Morning Prayer: the recitation of the Canticle of Zechariah (also known as the Benedictus) from St Luke’s Gospel (1:68–79). Morning Prayer then concludes with prayers of intercession, the Lord’s Prayer and a final prayer followed by a blessing.

Morning Prayer is also called Lauds (which in Latin means praises).

The texts used at Morning Prayer can be found on the Universalis website.

More information about the Dominican Priory of St Michael the Archangel (Blackfriars), Cambridge can be found on its website.

See also our series Introduction to the Prayer of the Church about The Liturgy of The Hours, including Morning Prayer (all the episodes are available as podcasts).


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