Wednesday, June 07, 2006

The Midnight List


Many have asked about my trip to the Abbey of Gethsemani. It was a meaningful time for me. For once, nothing bad happened, like getting locked out of my room. But it was nice sharing with 30 others who were there studying the life of Thomas Merton, a monk who lived at Gethsemani for 27 years, before his untimely death in 1968.

We sat on the porch of his hermitage – where he was a hermit – and read his poetry, drank tea, ate cookies, and shared with one another. Just being with people who have a common interest was nice.

I was reminded while there of the importance of VIGILS. In a monastery vigils is held at 2:15 a.m. (That’s right AM). I have difficulty getting up at that time to pray, but it is part of the regular routine of the monks, along with 6 other prayer times scattered throughout the day.

Many years ago, when I first moved to Nashville, I lived for 3 months with Mrs. J.O. Williams. (Her real name was Ethel but everyone called her “Mrs. J.O.”). Each day when I came home from work she would share interesting highlights of religious and historical interest that she thought would be helpful to me. But the thing she taught me that was more important than anything else was that she had a special time to pray.

“When you have a prayer request,” she would say to me, “you can call me at MIDNIGHT and I will pray for it.” Every night at Midnight she would wake up, read her Bible, and pray, which was her Vigils.

Since then, I have what I call “the Midnight List.” When I wake up in the middle of the night, I take the names on the special list and pray for them. The midnight list differs from my regular prayer list. It is much shorter and it contains, not just the routine prayers, but special prayers for friends and others who need a special uplifting before God.

I have found that to be a special time for me. Do you have “A Midnight List?”


At 9:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

MIDNIGHT LIST....Neat idea. Pray to God when He is not too busy...midnight, after all. I do keep a list but the intent is "Dear God, I sometimes forget but these are the people I have promised to pray for. They might slip from my mind BUT certainly not from YOURS." 'In Thy hands, they are secure...Thy love shall endure.'

At 2:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

PRAYING FOR OTHERS..........A long time ago, a very devout woman told me about her way of praying in a very special and intentful way. She told me: "I write the name and intention on a small bit of paper and fold it and place it behind the Crucifix on my wall. It is my way of saying to Him 'please don't forget, though I might. '" Great gone to God, her faith and example still impresses.

At 6:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

HOW MUCH GOOD..........Only God knows how much good has occured because someone was praying. When an police or fire vehicle goes roaring by, I always pray for the persons in need and for those who will aid them. I like to pray for those who have no one to say a little prayer for them. I pray for those who will pass from this world with no one there to offer a prayer. God only knows the blessings that He has sent due to some stranger's petition. Misere Domine.


Post a Comment

<< Home