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Local Parishioner Publishes Article, Becomes Candidate for Holy OrdersOctober 3, 2017 • CFE Staff  • DIOCESAN FAMILY • EPISCOPAL & ANGLICAN NEWS

Kathryn (Katie) Gillett’s article “Blessed Repetition” recently appeared in Anglican Episcopal House of Studies Perspectives for Duke Divinity School, and now the parishioner from St. Mary of the Angels Episcopal Church in Orlando is a Candidate for Holy Orders.

Here is her article:

O Lord, open thou our lips.

And our mouth shall show forth thy praise.

Each morning, I come to Goodson Chapel to pray Morning Prayer in community. In the five minutes of silence at the beginning, I wait. In the silence, I long to say these words. Some mornings the silence is endless, others it is fleeting. It is a time of waiting. A time of listening for the voice of the Lord. Even when my mind is exhausted from the late nights spent working on papers, studying for exams, and trying to complete the endless list of readings, when I cannot think of words to pray during the silence, the “Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words” (Romans 8:26). It is in the silence that I watch the sunlight shine into Goodson Chapel. I look around at the community of students gathered for Morning Prayer. As a community, we watch and we wait.

After confessing our sins and preparing our hearts and minds to worship, the words ring out:

O Lord, open thou our lips.

And our mouth shall show forth thy praise.

The silence of the night has ended. Now the Lord opens our mouths. Now we praise the Lord. Morning by morning, our lips repeat these words from Psalm 51. The words are a prayer of returning ourselves to the Lord, remembering our dependence upon the Lord, and recognizing the Lord as the One enabling us to pray. We offer up our thoughts, concerns, fears, loves, doubts, and especially hope to the Lord in our prayers.

Praying the Daily Office each day creates a rhythm of re-orienting ourselves to the Lord. The repetition, rather than being monotonous, incorporates us with the prayers of the Church. We join the ongoing chorus of prayers by all the host of heaven and the communion of saints that has been occurring across the centuries. A chorus enriching our prayer life, our own private devotions and intercessions to the Lord.

In the challenges of the day, when there is not enough time to complete all the tasks, when the cares of the world cloud the mind, it is essential to come together as a community, wait in silence, and pray,

O Lord, open thou our lips.

And our mouth shall show forth thy praise.

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