Jesus asks that His disciples to “pray unceasingly.” (Luke 21:36) This is a hard command and requires great discipline in both the mind and body. Essentially to pray unceasingly is to “be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect,” (Matt 5:48) for it is constantly keeping at the forefront of one’s mind and heart the twofold commandment: “love God and your neighbor.” (Luke 10:27) Prayer is putting these commandments into action.
To aid in a personal and perpetual active relationship with God, the Church has Mass offered daily; this is the highest form of prayer. Additionally, the Church has laid out holy hours to bring her members into prayer all throughout the day and night. These moments are called the “holy hours” or “Divine Office". These hourly prayers are divided into four categories: morning (lauds, terce), daytime (sext, none), evening (vespers, compline) and night prayers (matins).
“From ancient times the Church has had the custom of celebrating each day the liturgy of the hours. In this way the Church fulfills the Lord’s precept to pray without ceasing, at once offering its praise to God the Father and interceding for the salvation of the world.” – Office of the Sacred Congregation for Divine Worship. more...