Let Your Computer Summon You to the Daily Office


By Louie Crew

I have trained my computer to load the Daily Office automatically four times during the day, and to ring cathedral bells just beforehand to summon me to  prayer.

Here are  the routines on my SONY VAIO computer using Windows XP.  I hope the explanation will help you set up similar routines.

Here are the stages:

  1. Load "Scheduled Tasks"  
  2. Schedule Explorer (or any other browser) to go to the Daily Office
  3. Schedule Explorer (or any other brower) to ring cathedral bells



Load Scheduled Tasks:

"Scheduled Tasks" is available in most verisions of Windows, though menus may vary from the ones in XP referenced below.  

From the START button, follow this route:

Route to 'Scheduled Tasks'


When you click on 'Scheduled Tasks' you will cycle through a series of windows:

route



route

route 4

Note:  later I change this name to "Oremus" or to "Church Bells", but for right now, I accept the name suggested when I clicked on "Internet Explorer" in the previous window.

Also, later I will change the frequency to be several times a day, but for now I choose "Daily."

route 5

route 7


Once you have clicked on FINISH, you can go back to "Scheduled Tasks" and modify it so that Internet Explorer does not just run, but goes to the Daily Office and at multiple times that you specify.  

You can also change the name of the task, from  "Folder Tasks" menu in Windows XP, from the FILE menue in some of the earlier versions.  I  renamed this Explorer routine to "Oremus" the name of the site for the faily office.  Then I clicked on the right mouse button and chose to see the properties of my Oremus Task.  It comes up with three panels:   "Task", "Schedule" and "Settings":

route 9

When you first see this, the text in the "Run" panel will show only the command for Explorer, as you  have specified it in the earlier routines above.  Keep the address of EXPORE.EXE the same that is now in your panel, as that will be the route to Windows Explorer on your computer, but modify the line to add the lectionary site address, as I have done in my panel.  Note well the use of quotation marks arounde the program name and route::

            "C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\IEXPLORE.EXE"  http://www.oremus.org

Note:  I have chosen Oremus at http://www.oremus.org:  there are other lectionary sites from which you may choose.  For examples:  http://www.io.com/~kellywp/ or http://www.textweek.com/.   I suggest vistiting all three of these and any other you find, and then making your choice.   For this explanation, I am staying with the Oremus example.

Next click on the 'Schedule' Panel, which on my computer appears below, after I have clicked on the "Advanced" button on that panel::

route 10


Note that I have set the routine to run 4 times every day, starting at 9a and running every 4 hours.    The routine is set to close after 30 minutes each time.

The "Settings" panel summariezes my choicese and gives me a few more opitions:


route 11

Note that I have chosen not to wake up the computer to run the task.  That means that others in the household will not be disturbed by it if I am not on site to respond to it.


Adding Bells or Whistles


You can repeat the steps above, but in  instead of putting the Oremus address in the Run Panel, go to the address of your favorite church bells.   I change the bells that I use occasionally.   Click here to access a fine collection of bells from English Cathedrals.  

As a young man I was encouraged to make fun of religions which created prayer wheels, as if a mechanical device could do one's praying and free up time for something else.  In this instance, the mechanical aid is to free up time, but not for something else.  These routines free up time for prayer itself.   Like the muezzin in a minaret, these routines can interrupt our busyness to summon us more consciously into the presence of God.


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