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Morning Prayer

God, come to my assistance.
- Lord, make haste to help me

Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever.  Amen.


The God whom earth and sea and sky
Adore and praise and magnify,
Whose might they own, whose praise they tell,
In Mary's body deigned to dwell.

O Mother blest! the chosen shrine
Where in the Architect divine,
Whose hand contains the earth and sky,
Vouchsafed in hidden guise to lie.

Blest in the message Gabriel brought;
Blest in the work the Spirit wrought;
More blest, to bring to human birth
The long desired of all the earth.

O Lord, the Virgin born, to thee
Eternal praise and glory be,
Whom with the Father we adore
And Holy Ghost for evermore.

Melody: Eisenach L.M.
Music: Johan H. Schein, 1586-1630
Text: Venantius Fortunatus 530-609
Translator: J.M. Neale, 1818-1866



Virgin of virgins,
I choose you today
as my sovereign, my queen, my empress,
and I declare myself, as I am in fact,
your servant and your slave.

I invoke your royal name of Mary,
that is, sovereign Lady,
and beg of you with all my heart
to admit me into the privileged circle
of your family
as one of your servants,
to do your will
as a humble slave and a loving child.

As a sign of your acceptance
engrave on my heart
with the fire of your love,
not the brand of an unwilling slave,
but those two gracious words of the angel:
Ave Maria.

As long as I draw breath
may your burning love ensure
that I bear these words
in my heart and in my memory,
and that until my dying breath
my will may be always on fire
with my great desire to serve you,
my sovereign and my queen,
glorious in your majesty.

Though I am in every way unworthy
of so honorable a title,
I resolve sincerely to be your slave,
to serve you wholeheartedly,
to protect your name,
and that of your Son,
against every insult,
as far as it may rest with me,
and never to allow anyone in my charge
to offend your Son in any way.

By your tender love for your Son,
by the glories you have received
from the Most Holy Trinity,
do not reject me from your service
but as my sovereign and my queen
preside over all my actions,
command whatever you will,
direct all my work,
remedy all its defects.

During my whole life
rule over me
as your servant and slave.
At the hour of my death,
as I hope for
at the end of my loving servitude
among the privileged members of your family,
receive my soul and escort it
into the presence of God.

St Bartolome de Los Rios(1580-1652)



Ant.1 My soul clings to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

or: Mary gave birth to Jesus, who is called the Christ.

Psalm 51
O God, have mercy on me

Your inmost being must be renewed, and you must put on the new man. (Eph 4:23-24)

Have mercy on me, God, in your kindness.
In your compassion blot out my offense.
O wash me more and more from my guilt
and cleanse me from my sin.

My offenses truly I know them;
my sin is always before me
Against you, you alone, have I sinned;
what is evil in your sight I have done.

That you may be justified when you give sentence
and be without reproach when you judge,
O see, in guilt I was born,
a sinner was I conceived.

Indeed you love truth in the heart;
then in the secret of my heart teach me wisdom.
O purify me, then I shall be clean;
O wash me, I shall be whiter than snow.

Make me hear rejoicing and gladness,
that the bones you have crushed may thrill.
From my sins turn away your face
and blot out all my guilt.

A pure heart create for me, O God,
put a steadfast spirit within me.
Do not cast me away from your presence,
nor deprive me of your holy spirit.

Give me again the joy of your help;
with a spirit of fervor sustain me,
that I may teach transgressors your ways
and sinners may return to you.

O rescue me, God, my helper,
and my tongue shall ring out your goodness.
O Lord, open my lips
and my mouth shall declare your praise.

For in sacrifice you take no delight,
burnt offering from me you would refuse,
my sacrifice, a contrite spirit,
a humbled, contrite heart you will not spurn.

In your goodness, show favor to Zion:
rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.
Then you will be pleased with lawful sacrifice,
(burnt offerings wholly consumed),
then you will be offered young bulls on your altar.

Ant. 2 Let us rejoice that we have been made sharers in Christ's passion.

Or: Holy Mother, on the cross Christ entrusted us to you as your children. Today we join with you in praising him.


Canticle                                                      Tobit 13:8-11,13-15
Thanksgiving for the people's deliverance

He showed me the holy city Jerusalem which shone with the glory of God (Revelation 21:10-11)


Let all men speak of the Lord’s majesty
and sing his praises in Jerusalem

O Jerusalem, holy city,
he scourged you for the works of your hands,
but will again pity the children of the righteous.

Praise the Lord for his goodness,
and bless the King of the ages,
so that his tent may be rebuilt in you with joy.

May he gladden within you all who were captives;
all who were ravaged may he cherish within you
for all generations to come.

A bright light will shine to all parts of the earth;
many nations shall come to you from afar,
and the inhabitants of all the limits of the earth
drawn to you by the name of the Lord God,
bearing in their hands their gifts for the King of

Every generation shall give joyful praise in you,
and shall call you the chosen one,
through all ages forever.

Go, then, rejoice over the children of the righteous,
who shall be gathered together
and shall bless the Lord of the ages.

Happy are those who love you,
and happy those who rejoice in your prosperity.

Happy all the men who shall grieve over you,
over all your chastisements.

for they shall rejoice in you
as they behold all your joy forever.

My spirit blesses the Lord, the great King.

Ant. 3: It pleased the Father to reconcile all creation in himself through the blood of Christ.

Or: The Virgin Mary, crowned with a diadem of twelve stars, is exalted above the choirs of angels.

Psalm 147:12-20
The restoration of Jerusalem

Come, I will show you the bride of the Lamb (Revelation 21:9)


O praise the Lord, Jerusalem!
Zion praise your God!

He has strengthened the bars of your gates
he has blessed the children within you.
He established peace on your borders,
he feeds you with finest wheat.

He sends out his word to the earth
and swiftly runs his command.
He showers down snow white as wool,
he scatters hoar-frost like ashes.

He hurls down hailstones like crumbs.
The waters are frozen at his touch;
he sends forth his word and it melts them:
at the breath of his mouth the waters flow.

He makes his word known to Jacob,
to Israel his laws and decrees.
He has not dealt thus with other nations;
he has not taught them his decrees.

FIRST READING                                                      Colossians 1:24-25

Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ on behalf of his body, which is the church, of which I am a minister in accordance with God's stewardship given to me to bring to completion for you the word of God.

Or                                                       Proverbs 8:32-36;9:1-6,10-12

"So now, O children, listen to me;
  instruction and wisdom do not reject!
Happy the man who obeys me,
  and happy those who keep my ways,
Happy the man watching daily at my gates,
  waiting at my doorposts;
For he who finds me finds life,
  and wins favor from the Lord;
But he who misses me harms himself;
  all who hate me love death."

Wisdom has built her house,
  she has set up her seven columns;
She has dressed her meat, mixed her wine,
  yes, she has spread her table.
She has sent out her maidens; she calls
  from the heights out over the city:

"Let whoever is simple turn in here;
  to him who lacks understanding, I say,
Come, eat of my food,
  and drink of the wine I have mixed!
Forsake foolishness that you may live;
  advance in the way of understanding.
For by me your days will be multiplied
  and the years of your life increased."

The beginning of wisdom is the fear of the Lord,
  and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
If you are wise, it is to your own advantage;
  and if you are arrogant, you alone shall bear it.


From a sermon by St. Laurence Justinian, bishop
(Sermo 8, in festo Purificationis B.M.V.: Opera, 2, Venetiis 1751, 38-39)

Mary stored up all these things in her heart.


While Mary contemplated all she had come to know through reading, listening and observing, she grew in faith, increased in merits, and was more illuminated by wisdom and more consumed by the fire of charity. The heavenly mysteries were opened to her, and she was filled with joy; she became fruitful by the Spirit, was being directed toward God, and watched over protectively while on earth.

So remarkable are the divine graces that they elevate one from the lowest depths to the highest summit, and transform one to a greater holiness. How entirely blessed was the mind of the Virgin which, through the indwelling and guidance of the Spirit, was always and in every way open to the power of the Word of God. She was not led by her own senses, nor by her own will; thus she accomplished outwardly through her body what wisdom from within gave to her faith.

It was fitting for divine Wisdom, which created itself a home in the Church, to use the intervention of the most blessed Mary in guarding the law, purifying the mind, giving an example of humility and providing a spiritual sacrifice.

Imitate her, O faithful soul. Enter into the deep recesses of your heart so that you may be purified spiritually and cleansed from your sins. God places more value on good will in all we do than on the works themselves.

Therefore, whether we give ourselves to God in the work of contemplation or whether we serve the needs of our neighbor by good works, we accomplish these things because the love of Christ urges us on. The acceptable offering of the spiritual purification is accomplished not in a man-made temple but in the recesses of the heart where the Lord Jesus freely enters.

Through you we drink from the wellsprings of salvation, O Blessed Virgin Mary
 - Through you we drink from the wellsprings of salvation, O Blessed Virgin Mary
From the sacred wounds of Christ,
 - O Blessed Virgin Mary.
Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
 - Through you we drink from the wellsprings of salvation, O Blessed Virgin Mary.


O Virgin Mary, no other daughter of Jerusalem is your equal,
for you are the mother of the King of kings,
you are the Queen of heaven and of angels.
 - Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of you womb.
Hail, full of grace; the Lord is with you.
 - Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of you womb.

CANTICLE OF ZECHARIAH                                                       Luke 1:68-79

Ant. Rejoice, O sorrowful Mother; after your great sufferings, you shine forth as Queen, enthroned beside your son.


The Messiah and his forerunner


Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel;
he has come to his people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty savior,
born of the house of his servant David.
Through his holy prophets he promised of old,
  that he would save us from our enemies,
  from the hands of all who hate us.
He promised to show mercy to our fathers
and to remember his holy covenant.
This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham,
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear,
holy and righteous in his sight
 all the days of our life.
You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High,
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
To give his people knowledge of salvation
by the forgiveness of their sins.
In the tender compassion of our God
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death,
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.
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.


Let us glorify our Savior, who chose the Virgin Mary for his mother. Let us ask him:

May your mother intercede for us, Lord.

Sun of Justice, the immaculate Virgin was the white dawn announcing your rising,
- grant that we may always live in the light of your coming.

Eternal Word, you chose Mary as the uncorrupted ark of your dwelling place,
- free us from the corruption of sin.

Savior of mankind, your mother stood at the foot of your cross,
- grant, through her intercession, that we may rejoice to share in your passion.

With ultimate generosity and love, you gave Mary as a mother to your beloved disciple,
-help us to live as worthy sons of so noble a mother.


Our Father…


as your Son was raised on the cross,
his mother Mary stood by him, sharing his sufferings.
May your Church be united with Christ
in his suffering and death
and so come to share in his rising to new life,
where he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

May the Lord bless us,
protect us from evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
 -  Amen.

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