My family has recently begun an intentional prayer and scripture time modeled after the daily office that we use each evening before dinner. Still a work in progress, here is the format we are currently following.
A few notes:
1. This format was intentionally chosen to be simple to allow our young readers and not-yet-reader to fully participate. They memorized the entire format rather quickly.
3. After the first week we began including a spontaneous prayer as part of the Prayer Before the Meal.
4. For the Scripture Reading we have been using the gospel lesson from the day’s morning office as found in The Dive Hours. It seems to be the perfect length for a family with young children.
Family Prayer at the Evening Meal
Greeting (Psalm 107:1)
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
his love endures forever.
We light this candle, reminding ourselves of the Spirit’s presence and our desire to reflect Christ’s light to others.
This is the Word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.
Prayer Before the Meal
Lord, we thank you for this food and receive your gift with joy. We welcome you at this table with us. Be present in our conversation, helping us to listen to one another and notice your work in us and through us. Lead us to bless you, our community, and our neighbors. Amen.
Sharing the Meal
Prayer After the Meal (from Mark 12:29-31)
Lord, help us to love you
with all our heart and with all our soul
and with all our mind and with all our strength,
and then to love our neighbor as ourselves. Amen.