Here in the heart of the city it is middle of the night.
The nearby inner city airport is quiet, while the sounds from the even closer freight-yard as long trains are assembled with containers from across the globe echo along the alleyways of the neighbourhood.
For once the sound of sirens is absent. That means, for now at least, no fires, medical emergencies or violence.
For a city that amounts to stillness!
Usually I am up and at prayer by 5 in the morning but this night awoke at 2, moved to pray especially for this city.
Frequently in the Holy Gospel we are told Jesus would spend the night in prayer, in communion with the Father.
Since the very beginning of the life of the Church after Pentecost this tradition of men and women, young and old, priest, monks, nuns, keeping vigil has grown.
Countless are those who quietly enter chapels of Perpetual Adoration throughout the night around the world to be with Him, adoring Jesus, joining their prayer to the Father with His.
While it is night here elsewhere in the world a new day has dawned, in some countries it is the middle of the day.
To keep vigil is to love one another, to be a voice for each other.
These hours before the daily arrival of email or snail mail or phone calls are a time of peace and silence, a time to be with Him in simple dialogue, listening, adoring, worshipping, interceding.
Indeed it is to be faithful to the first duty of a priest which is to pray for all our brothers and sisters.