Standing before the altar (prayer of the hands)
Day 5- August 3
When he was in the convent, the holy father Dominic sometimes also stood before the altar with his whole body upright on his feet, without supporting himself or leaning on anything, with his hands spread out in front of his chest like an open book. Thus did he behave in the manner of standing with great reverence and devotion as if he had been reading in the visible presence of God. Then, immersed in prayer, we saw him meditating on the word of God, and as if repeating it to himself with suavity. (...)
Sometimes he would put his hands together and hold them tightly in front of his eyes, gathering himself within; sometimes he would raise them to shoulder height, as a priest is wont to do when he celebrates holy mass. He seemed to want to listen more intently to some word that were being said to him from the altar. (...)
Witnessing this example, the friars were very impressed in the presence of their father and master; and, having become more fervent, they found themselves wonderfully drawn to an admirable prayer of piety and constancy.
With Dominic, who stood near the altar with his hands open like a book in front of his chest, we implore you, Lord: may your Word help Christians to keep their hearts open in order to love and serve as your Son did on the evening of the Last Supper. May we meditate on your Word, may we allow our hearts to be touched by your Word which is always alive, and may we become filled with it, so that we may live by it.
It is your dearest desire, O God, that we may stand upright, in our dignity as children of God, and no longer be slaves to sin and to our evil inclinations. Your Word puts us back on our feet. We let you tell us again how much you love us. With open hands, give us the grace to accept your love deeply, to let it act in us, to transform us. May we be able to be silent, to listen, to hear your voice, and to come into dialogue with you. We want to hear your call.
O God Our Creator, Redeemer, Paraclete,
In prayer, we lift our praise, our blessing, our preaching.
Eight hundred years ago, you called Saint Dominic
to enter into eternal life, and to join you at table in heaven.
As we celebrate this Jubilee, feed us and fill us with grace
so that we may realize our mission of preaching for the salvation of souls.
Help us nourish your people, with your Truth, your Mercy and your Love,
until the promised day when we are all united with the blessed.
We ask this, as One Dominican Family,
through the pleas of Mary, in the name of Jesus. Amen.