Liturgy of hours
Since the Liturgy of the Hours is the official prayer of the Church, the nuns, in carrying it out, are united not only to one another but to the whole People of God, in heaven and on earth. Together with Christ with their Head, in one cosmic liturgical act (Rev 4-5) they offer praise to the Father in the name of the whole creation. In the psalms especially, they lament on behalf of all who are suffering, beg that justice be done to all who are oppressed, and give thanks for every legitimate human aspiration as well as the very mystery of the Godhead itself becomes the subject of their prayer.
If the Eucharist is the heart of the nuns'' life, the Divine Office, or Liturgy of the Hours as it is known, is the outflowing rhythmical pulse upon which everything else depends. The purpose of this aspect of the Church''s liturgy is to sanctify time itself by celebrating the Word, in song, speech, and silence, at each of the key hours of the day. Thus the nuns gather in the morning at dawn to praise God for the beginning of a new day, symbolic of the rebirth of creation, of light and of life. Likewise, in the evening as dark descends they gather again to thank God for the day now ending, with its opportunities, successes and failures.
These two liturgical hours, Morning and Evening Prayer, are the hinges upon which the entire Office turns. Three other times during the course of the day the nuns assemble briefly to recall God''s loving presence and invoke his blessing upon the passage of time: at midmorning, midday, and midafternoon. This recalls the ancient Jewish and early Christian custom of prayer at nine o''clock, noon and three o''clock in the afternoon. In addition, at some time during the day, or according to monastic tradition even at night, an Office of Readings is held, which includes lengthy passages from Scripture and early church writers. Night prayer also is said in common before the nuns retire.