Sunday, July 16, 2006
Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary

The Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary began as an abridged version of the Common of the Blessed Virgin in the Divine Office. In the 10th century, it became widespread as a votive office, and in the 11th century was reorganized by St. Peter Damian. By the 12th century it was used throughout Europe and obligatory for all clergy. It was also popular among the laity. The obligation was lifted by St. Pius V in 1568. At the Council of Trent, the Little Office was de-emphasized in favor of the Divine Office (The Liturgy of the Hours), the prayer of the Church.

After Trent, the Little Office became a devotional office, prayed by nonclerical religious. It was revised in 1952, with the addition of many new texts.

The traditional version of the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary is available on

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