12 May 2020

“You changed my mourning into dancing;

… and clothed me with gladness.”

(Psalm 30:12)

Good Monday morning!  May today’s Katherine Konnection bring you blessings and cheer from your faith community! 

Here’s a few things our family learned this week as we continued staying-at-home, social-distancing, and home-schooling:

  • Campfires with our Scout Troop families are just as fun shared across a Zoom Session. (After all, it’s all about the fellowship, not the fire!)
  • The difference between a snicker-doodle and a sugar cookie.
  • Who really framed Roger Rabbit.
  • After more than two decades of marriage, Beth and I have an uncanny ability to interpret each other’s scribbles and doodles to win at Pictionary.
  • How much we enjoy praying Night Prayer together as a family.

As we continue staying-at-home and home-schooling, we have discovered new ways of sharing time and love for one another with family and friends.  One of those new discoveries is sharing time together in prayer.

We have re-discovered the beauty of praying the Liturgy of the Hours, and the psalms upon which they are based.  The Liturgy of the Hours, or Divine Office, and the Book of Psalms, are unique in our tradition.  Saint Pope John Paul II described the Hours:

(Through) “this prayer of Christ to which we give voice, our day is sanctified, our activities transformed, our actions made holy.  We pray the same psalms that Jesus prayed and come into personal contact with Him.”

Saint Athanasius writes the Book of Psalms has a certain grace of its own.  The Psalms contain the history, commandments, covenants, and prophesies; they are a summary of the Bible.  Unlike any other book, however, the Psalms also express the emotions of the soul: the joy, the longing, the sorrow, the pain, the exaltation.  Athanasius writes

“For in the other books one hears only what one must do and what one must not do.  And one listens to the Prophets so as solely to have knowledge of the coming of the Savior.  But in the Book of Psalms, the one who hears, in addition to learning these same things, also is taught the emotions of the soul.”

With the Internet and Smartphones it’s never been easier to pray the Liturgy of the Hours; “Yeah, there’s an app for that.”  Three of the most popular free apps are iBreviary, DivineOffice, and Universalis.  We even project our prayer from a smartphone onto the TV – it gives us the “Big Screen” feel, just like sitting in our Church.

Give the Hours and the Book of Psalms a try, alone or with others.  We also continue to offer you Sixty Second Sermons for your prayer.  For more information about the Liturgy of the Hours and additional reading, please see my website www.JoyoftheWord.org.

Finally, remember to keep in your prayers persons suffering from COVID-19 or enduring anxiety over the pandemic, those caring for them, and all who have lost loved ones.

“In the day of distress I will call

and surely you will reply.

Among the gods, there is none like you, O Lord,

nor work to compare with yours.”  (Psalm 86)

May the Lord protect us as we stay awake, and watch over us as we sleep, that awake we may keep watch with Christ, and asleep, rest in His peace, alleluia!

Deacon Jeff



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