The Benedictus, taken from Luke 1:68-79, is Zachariah’s prayer of praise at the arrival of his child. (Zachariah is the father of John the Baptist.)
Traditionally Benedictines pray this every day in Morning Prayer (or Lauds). In some mysterious way, praying Zachariah's prayer allows people to join in the praise, and the commitments, between God and those who prepared the way for Jesus.
This daily reminder is part of the rhythm of prayer and work in Benedictine monastic life. Praying the Benedictus calls Benedictine souls to timeless principles of faith. It connects each one of us to Benedictine community around the world, and through out the past 1500 years.
In praying the Benedictus, I know that I am traveling with others who have been called to this path for more than 1500 years. Whether I chant, or simply recite the Benedictus, I know that I am in community, even when I pray all by myself.