Little Office of the BVM

Is the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary considered a prayer of the Church, like the Divine Office, or is a private devotion?

Thank you.

I have no personal definitive info on this interesting question, but I did find this (from

"The Constitution on the Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council added a new dimension to the Little Office(s). The Little Office(s), whether prayed out of obligation or out of devotion, were now to be classified as liturgical prayer, and those who prayed them would be participating in the official liturgy of the hours of the church. By 1966, however, religious and lay people were encouraged to adopt at least the Morning and Evening Prayer from the Divine Office. This was the beginning of the end of the Little Offices. Interest in, and use of, the Little Office(s) virtually died. When the Liturgy of the Hours was published, beginning in 1973, it did not include a version of the Little Office of the BVM.

However, versions of the Little Office, based on the structure of the new Liturgy of the Hours, began to appear. The Calced Carmelites in England published the Little Office of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in 1974, and it has been reprinted twice, the most recent time in 1991. In the United States, an entirely new edition of the Little Office was prepared by Fr. John Rotelle, an Augustinian; it appeared in 1988. Some older editions (pre-Council) were reprinted several times, due to demand, and continue to be popular.

The future of the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin (and the other Little offices) is unknown. For the moment, it appears that the Liturgy of the Hours, in one of its short
forms (in the Americas, Christian Prayer or Shorter Christian Prayer) has replaced them."

The original article (and the entire web site) has some very interesting stuff and is worth looking at.

As an individual, you can say any version or modification of the LOTH. The Book of Christian Prayer is a version that I am learning, but I still get a little confused in finding where I am supposed to be. so I have been sticking with the Little Office of the BVM. Its quite easy.

I think the rules for Orders and priests/religious is different. Dominican, Franciscan, Benedictine, etc has different rules.

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