Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Cure for Breviary Boredom+weekly Q&A

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For those of us living in cold weather regions, winter is really starting to drag. It's been pretty cold, and even those of us who think falling snow is a pretty sight are beginning to fantasize about the first crocus, the first robin, etc. Although our hearts are lifted a bit by the gradual lengthening of days since the solstice, these long cold days bring on a feeling ranging from dullness and boredom to full blown seasonal affective disorder (depression).

This can carry over into one's prayer life. Even the Divine Office, which has plenty of variety, can seem a little boring. Same old, same old. Why bother?  The temptation is to skip it.  And true, it's not big deal to skip it now and then. But if this happens too often, the skipping, rather than the praying, threatens to become your new habit.

We've talked here before about forcing oneself through these dry periods by just going ahead with the prayer, however boring it might seem, until things get better. So there's no need to repeat. But here's another idea: remind yourself of what it is you are doing when you faithfully pray the Liturgy of the Hours. Do this by clicking on the "General Instruction" tab above and reading just the first chapter of the General Instruction. It has 4 sections. These tell you what the Liturgy of the Hours is. If you read them with attention, you can't help but respond "Wow! Is that what the Divine Office is? Is that what the Church is allowing a shlub like me to participate in?"  This should go far in shaking off your mid-winter breviary boredom.

Now, weekly Q&A time. Any questions, concerns, or confusion over the Liturgy of the Hours may be submitted in the comments below.