GILH 38: Morning Prayer

St Basil indeed makes an outstanding case for prayer at the commencement of the day:

38. As is clear from many of the elements that make it up, morning prayer is intended and arranged to sanctify the morning. St. Basil the Great gives an excellent description of this character in these words: “It is said in the morning in order that the first stirrings of our mind and will may be consecrated to God and that we may take nothing in hand until we have been gladdened by the thought of God, as it is written: ‘I was mindful of God and was glad’ (Ps 77:4 [Jerome’s translation from Hebrew]), or set our bodies to any task before we do what has been said: ‘I will pray to you, Lord, you will hear my voice in the morning; I will stand before you in the morning and gaze on you’ (Ps 5:4-5).” [Basil the Great, Regulae fusius tractatae resp. 37, 3: PG 31, 1014.]

Saint Cyprian adds a christological dimension to the time of day:

Celebrated as it is as the light of a new day is dawning, this hour also recalls the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, the true light enlightening all people (see Jn 1:9) and “the sun of justice” (Mal 4:2), “rising from on high” (Lk 1:78). Hence, we can well understand the advice of St. Cyprian: “There should be prayer in the morning so that the resurrection of the Lord may thus be celebrated.” [Cyprian, De oratione dominica 35: PL 4, 561.]

Thoughts?

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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