We have acquired two Great Pyrenees, both still puppies, though one is at least 70 pounds and 24 inches tall at the withers (withers – strange word, that). Mostly because we complained so much about a neighbor’s dog barking in the middle of the night almost directly into our bedroom window (or so it seemed at 2 am) that they gave their dog to one of their children, I am paranoid about my dogs barking.
So, I let them out in the morning, get them fed, and about the time they start to get restless, around 6 ish, I go sit outside and say my morning prayers from the four volume Liturgy of the Hours. As a lay Dominican, I have committed to saying the morning and evening office in community with all Dominicans, in spirit, if not in person.
Since the Dominicans are the Order of Preachers, perhaps this is practice. No, I am not a priest, and will not be giving any homilies. But, preaching comes in many forms, from just talking to people, to writing blogs, and to giving talks at church retreats, etc. With Yeti and Ghost, I experience what many preachers experience. I say my prayers out loud to them, and they fall asleep.
I like the practice of the saying of the Hours – as I get older, I appreciate the seasons, the rhythms, our cyclical reality. During Lent, the first psalm on Friday is Psalm 51. It is a wonderfully timely psalm for Lent and for Fridays.
Also, the responsory after each reading on each day is the same through Lent:
God himself will set me free, from the hunter’s snare.
— God himself will set me free, from the hunters snare.
From those who would trap me with lying words
— and from the hunter’s snare.
Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost
— God himself will set me free, from the hunter’s snare.
Every time I read that, I feel a little better about things.