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The Divine Hours (Volume Two): Prayers for Autumn and Wintertime: A Manual for Prayer Paperback – September 19, 2006
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“The Divine HoursTM is simply the best book for people who want to work prayer into the fabric of their daily life.”
—Bert Ghezzi, author of Voices of the Saints
“A welcome remedy for the increasing number of lay Christians who have rediscovered the Daily Offices . . . Tickle puts each day’s prayers, psalms, readings, and refrains—everything you need—in one place . . . The rhythm that Tickle’s book establishes gives one a stronger sense of participating in an ancient, worldwide but very personal liturgy.”
—Nora Gallagher, Beliefnet.com, and author of Things Seen and Unseen: A Year Lived in Faith
From the Inside Flap
"A welcome remedy for the increasing number of lay Christians who have rediscovered the daily offices. Tickle puts each day's prayers, psalms, readings, and refrains-everything you need-in one place. The rhythm that Tickle's book establishes gives one a stronger sense of participating in an ancient, worldwide but very personal liturgy."
-Nora Gallagher, "beliefnet.com, and author of "Things Seen and Unseen: A Year Lived in Faith
The third and final volume in a trilogy of prayer manuals compiled by "Publishers Weekly religion editor Phyllis Tickle as a contemporary Book of Hours to guide Christians gently yet authoritatively through the daily offices.
"The Divine Hours is the first major literary and liturgical reworking of the sixth-century Benedictine Rule of fixed-hour prayer. This beautifully conceived and thoroughly modern three-volume guide will appeal to the theological novice as well as to the ecclesiastical sophisticate. Making primary use of the Book of Common Prayer and the writings of the Church Fathers, "The Divine Hours is also a companion to the New Jerusalem Bible, from which it draws its Scripture readings. The trilogy blends prayer and praise in a way that, while extraordinarily fresh, respects and builds upon the ancient wisdom of Christianity.
The third and final book in the set, "Prayers for Springtime, provides prayers, psalms, and readings for this season associated with rebirth. Compact, with deluxe endpapers, it is perfect for those seeking greater spiritual depth. As a contemporary Book of Hours, "The Divine Hours: Prayers for Springtime heralds a renewal of the tradition of disciplined daily prayer, and gives those already using the first twovolumes the completion they are seeking. With this volume, the series culminates with three prayer manuals encompassing the liturgical and calendar year with the offices for every day.
"From the Hardcover edition.
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Top customer reviews
For me, spontaneous prayers are a disaster for a mind as prone to meander as mine. It is quite impossible for me to pray longer than twenty seconds without straying to thoughts all together unholy. Hence my need for an anchor, a corral, a hemmed in path for my mind to pray along, so as not to get lost.
This trilogy is just that sort of thing. Phyllis Tickle has taken the Book of Common Prayer and laid it out so those of use who find the actually book daunting may still unitlize this excellent tool. There is a minor amount of uncertainty when first starting as to the dates, but once you start, the dates settle into a rhythm. There are four times of prayer: Morning, Mid-Day, Vespers, and Night. The prayers themselves are mostly scripture Psalms with other readings added occasionally. The Vespers prayer has a hymn or piece of poetry and the Night Office usually has writings by universally acknowledge Saints of God.
I highly recommend The Divine Hours. Praying this will encourage you, guide you, deepen your relationship with God, and give you structure and peace. It is an excellent tool for those who wish to improve their prayer life but are uncertain how or where to begin. Even those who have been Christians for many years will benefit from the act of praying the scripture.
It lacks a detailed table of contents, page numbers, and the subtitles that the print form has.
So if I need to find the vespers office for the Friday in October closest to October 19, you have to do a search. You can't find it in the table of contents. Even if there were one, there are no page numbers to reference. The offices do not have subtitles or headings, so you have to "flip" through the pages looking for the day and the office. Then, if you want to use the late evening session--compline--the compline forms are in a separate section. In the hardcopy book, the morning, mid-day, and vespers prayers for October, for example, begin on page 3. The compline sessions begin on page 133. But the Kindle version doesn't have page numbers or headings.
Not impossible to use, but nearly, so I returned it.
The combination of Psalms, prayers, hymns, and other verses from the Bible helps me to center my thoughts on things that really matter throughout the day. Each reading is only a page or two long and takes maybe 10 minutes but each one has a powerful impact on my day and on my life.
Although I planned to use this method of devotions just through the winter I have now added the springtime and summer versions to my wish list.
The book is broken into chapters by month, with daily Morning Prayer, Midday Prayer, and Vespers. Compline is the same from week to week within a given month, so Tickle provides the seven days of Compline readings at the back of each month. The Introduction also includes a history of the Divine Hours and some instruction in how the use the prayers. She encourages readers to chant or sing the psalms or prayers when appropriate, but affirms that silent reading, chanting, or singing is a matter of personal preferences.
Each day's Offices follow the structure of the Book of Common Prayer, although the old familiar Invitatories and Responses are replaced by other varied, often less-familiar, lines from Scripture. The readings are usually biblical, but may also be from Christian sources. All-in-all, each office takes only a few minutes to read to oneself, and is varied, accessible, and enjoyable. The book, itself, is easy to use (although a built-in bookmark or two would be great), the type is easy to read, and it's not so heavy I'm going to mind packing it for a trip (although it's not a small book, by any means).
I highly recommend this book and its companions for the Divine Office beginner or regular practitioner. Those new to daily prayer may also enjoy Brook's The School of Prayer: An Introduction to the Divine Office for All Christians.