From ancient times the Church has had the custom of celebrating each day the liturgy of the hours. In this way, the Church fulfills the Lord’s precept to pray without ceasing, at once offering its praise to God the Father and interceding for the salvation of the world.
Morning Prayer is from the Liturgy of the Hours the official set of daily prayers prescribed by the Church to be recited at the canonical hours by the clergy, religious orders, and laity. The Liturgy of the Hours consists primarily of psalms supplemented by hymns and readings. Together with the Mass, it constitutes the official public prayer life of the Church.
The practice of daily prayers grew from the Jewish practice of reciting prayers at set times of the day: for example, in the Book of Acts, Peter and John visit the Temple for the afternoon prayers (Acts 3:1). Psalm 119:164 states: “Seven times a day I praise you for your righteous laws.”
The modern Liturgy of the Hours usage focuses on three major hours and from two to four minor hours:
The Major Hours: · the Office of Readings (formerly Matins), major hour · Morning prayer (Lauds), major hour · Evening prayer (Vespers), major hour The Minor Hours · Midday prayer (said at either the third, sixth or ninth hour - or each of these can be celebrated separately) · Night Prayer (Compline)