Office of Readings


I actually have two questions regarding Office of Readings.
Firstly, is it alright to pray the Office of Readings for the day after an anticipated mass for the following day
Secondly, I've heard that one should only pray the Office of Readings after night prayer instead of Evening Prayer. Which one is it? It does feel kind of weird praying O of R for Thursday before a Wednesday night prayer.:confused:


I think the office of Readings can be done anytime during the day. I try to say it with the Morning prayer because that is when I have more time to do so. Sometimes I do not get through much of the LOTH, and sometimes never get to it. I always think some is better than nothing. :)


Unless bound by a Secular Order or Secular Institute to a certain rhythm in the LOH, any time is fine.


The OOR is a vestige of the old office of Vigils (matins) which traditionally would be prayed in the middle of the night or in the very wee hours of the morning. We are not bound to that but for those who can it's a nice tradition to recall.


Thanks everybody!:thumbsup:;):)


For those doing the Office of Readings as a Vigil office (that is, late the previous evening, during the night, or very early in the morning), the LOTH offers the old "third nocturne" of three OT canticles in an appendix.

Buried somewhere in the monastic version of the General Instructions there's also a recommendation for religious (monks, etc) that use the 4-week LOTH instead of a monastic version (it's permitted for monks with an extensive external apostolate) to do the Office of Readings on a 2-week cycle. I've done that on occasion when using the LOTH instead of my community's monastic LOTH. That way you can have a more traditional Vigil of 2 nocturnes on ordinary days and 3 on Sundays, feasts and solemnities. The way I do it is on weeks 1 and 2, use the psalms from week 1 for the first nocturne and from week 2 for the second; ditto for weeks 3 and 4 (if you try weeks 1 and 3 and weeks 2 and 4 together, you end up with two nocturnes with Psalm 43 for the first and psalm 43 again for the second on Thursdays of weeks 2 and 4).

The structure would then be:

"Lord open my lips..."
Invitatory antiphon + psalm

First nocturne:
Weeks 1 and 2, psalms from week 1; weeks 3 and 4, psalms from week 3
Biblical reading

Second nocturne:
Weeks 1 and 2, psalms from week 2; weeks 3 and 4, psalms from week 4
Patristic reading

*or optionally during ordinary days from the 1st Monday after the Octave of Easter until November 15th

Short reading & responsory (from the Rule of St. Benedict, thus only applicable to Benedictines or Cistercians!)*

Third nocturne (Sundays, Feasts and Solemnities)

OT Canticles from the appendix (appropriate to the season, feast or solemnity)
Gospel reading (from the suggested list or of the Sunday, feast or solemnity)
Te Deum

All days

Collect & conclusion

This is just another little hidden gem of the LOTH that can serve to make the LOTH a lot more traditional than many realize at first glance.


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