One of my lenten exercises is something that isn't really of great importance , but something that I really needed to do. I'm trying my best to say the offices more reverently, with attention and devotion. I realised that I was doing wrong a while ago when I noticed that I could recite lauds and vespers in 15 minutes, when it used to take me 30. Part of it is simple familiarity: I did'nt know much latin at all, and even if I was familiar with the form of the office, I had to say things slowly to make sure that I was saying the right words.Even now, I'm constantly finding that I've been pronouncing a word wrong by stressing the wrong syllable. But eventually,within a few months after I got used to the psalter, I think I just started reciting the office without taking time not just to reflect on it, but even so far as to ignore the pauses and half-pauses in the psalms and preces.
I've tried to do things better now. I've given myself a set time for the lenght of the pauses in the office, to make sure that I don't just rush through things. I've also given myself a set beat for the recitation of the hymnsand I'm using the pauses and half-pauses printed with the psalms,preces, and responsories. More importantly, I'm trying to resist the temptation to recite the words of the psalm quickly as usual,but still use the pauses.