who knew that there would be such a perfect treasure awaiting me in the the divine office/praying the hours. most moms worth their salt will admit to occasional if not frequent bouts of nightly wake-ups, returning little ones back to their beds and then…. sleep escapes… the hours tick by… too early to get up and be noisily productive and too late to call on a friend.
perhaps the office of midnight might be just what some of us lonely late nighters need to punctuate the fact the indeed, God is with us to the end of the age (and even to the end of the night). So I start to read quietly…The Request for Presence O lord, let my prayer be set forth in your sight as incense, the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice… Psalm 141:2 adapted
… and then, like a generous token of God’s great affection for women who wake in the night, for women caring for sons and daughters, for women with dreams and delights held secretly and expectantly… I am presented with this treasure in the Office of Midnight…
The Song of Mary
My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my Spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for he has looked with favor in his lowly servant
From this day all generations will call me blessed
the Almighty has done great things for me and holy is His Name
He has mercy on those who fear him
in every generation
He has shown me the strength of His arm
he has scattered the proud in their conceit
He has cast down the mighty from their thrones
and has lifted up the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things
and the rich he has sent away empty
He has come to the help of his servant Israel
for he has remembered his promise of mercy
The promise he made to our Fathers
to Abraham and his children 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. Luke 1:46-55
And though I know not a soul who is praying through this with me now, I make this petition along with all those who are praying in this moment:The Petition May the Lord God, father of all mercy, grant us who dwell here a peaceful night and a perfect end. Amen.