“I will praise God’s name with a song”. Psalm 68 (69)
From Monday to Friday of this week, 1st to 5th August, ’22, we were treated to a singing and music workshop with musician, composer, and liturgist Margaret Daly Denton. Since much of our Divine Office was originally composed by Margaret, it is a special joy to reconnect with her and to work to renew and improve our singing of Liturgy of the Hours and our sung Eucharist here at Glencairn at regular intervals.
Cistercian monastic life is structured by the daily sung prayer of the Church, starting at 4:10am with the Office of Vigils, and continuing throughout the day to turn to God in prayer together in the Abbey church for a further six Offices, ending with Compline at 7:45pm.
This “sacrifice of praise” demands much of our energy and commitment as monastics, no less in our regular singing practice as a community. “Attendance at the singing practice is part of our zeal for the work of God” the Glencairn Customary reads, referencing the Rule of St. Benedict, which highlights such prized zeal for the Divine Office or Work of God as one of the signs of an authentic monastic vocation. Regardless of our individual singing and musical ability, all of the community is expected to attend our singing practices, since such zeal is what binds us in unity in our dedication to God in this place.
Thank you Margaret for lifting our hearts and voices to God with your gift of music and many songs that please God.