It is not, in fact, the witness of the individual that attracts the men of today, but the witness, fruit of a life led together with others, of a given community….
From Venite Seorsum as quoted in the Regina Laudis Constitutions
It is our prayer that we may as a community witness to the value of living a life together with others. Surely one of the ways that this value is gradually learned, practiced, and shared with others is through the singing of the Divine Office.
We sing the psalms seven times a day and once in the night, in an arrangement very close to the schema set forth by our founder Saint Benedict in his Rule, 1500 years ago. Of course it takes years of study, of Latin, of the Rule, of the Chant itself—rhythm, solfège, counting, and years of just singing together, and living together!—to feel “at home” with the Chant. And certainly the experience of the Divine Office is a very personal one for each member of the Community. Nevertheless, the power of the Divine Office as a unifying and strengthening force in our life is evident, even for those new to the community.
As we strive to live the motto of our Order, Ora et Labora (Pray and Work), it is the singing of the chant that continually brings us back to our common purpose as we are over and over again, called back to Choir, called by the bell from whatever manual work or study or other activity we may be engaged in, to sing the next Office, to re-center, together, in God.
The privilege of this vocation to praise is both demanding and deeply fulfilling. It is our joy to be able to share our life through hospitality, and especially to invite our visitors and guests to be present in our chapel or church when the Divine Office is being chanted. As stated in our Constitutions:
The deepest form of communication which the nuns of Regina Laudis extend to each guest is the liturgy. The community finds in the Eucharist and the Divine Office, expressed through the Gregorian Chant—when properly rendered in the unanimity of a single voice (Rule of Saint Benedict, Chapter 19:7)—a form of prayer which remains eminently capable of imparting peace and of evoking the response of present-day man.
SUNDAYS AND SOLEMNITIES
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