Sunday, 27 September 2020 : Twenty-Sixth Sunday of Ordinary Time, World Day of Prayer for Migrants and Refugees (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Matthew 21 : 28-32

At that time, Jesus went on to say, “What do you think of this? A man had two sins. He went to the first and said to him, ‘Son, go and work today in my vineyard.’ And the son answered, ‘I do not want to.’ But later he thought better of it and went. Then the father went to his other son and said the same thing to him. This son replied, ‘I will go, sir,’ but he did not go.”

“Which of the two did what the father wanted?” They answered, “The first.” And Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you : the publicans and the prostitutes are ahead of you on the way to the kingdom of heaven. For John came, to show you the way of goodness, and you did not believe him; but the publicans and the prostitutes did. You were witnesses of this, but you neither repented nor believed him.”

Sunday, 27 September 2020 : Twenty-Sixth Sunday of Ordinary Time, World Day of Prayer for Migrants and Refugees (Second Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Philippians 2 : 1-11

If I may advise you, in the Name of Christ, and if you can hear it, as the voice of love; if we share the same Spirit, and are capable of mercy and compassion, then I beg of you, make me very happy : have one love, one spirit, one feeling, do nothing through rivalry or vain conceit.

On the contrary, let each of you gently consider the others, as more important than yourselves. Do not seek your own interest, but, rather, that of others. Your attitude should be the same as Jesus Christ had : Though He was in the form of God, He did not regard equality with God as something to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking on the nature of a servant, made in human likeness, and in His appearance found as a Man.

He humbled Himself by being obedient to death, death on the cross. That is why God exalted Him and gave Him the Name which outshines all names, so that at the Name of Jesus all knees should bend in heaven, on earth and among the dead, and all tongues proclaim that Christ Jesus is the Lord to the glory of God the Father.

Alternative reading (shorter version)

Philippians 2 : 1-5

If I may advise you, in the Name of Christ, and if you can hear it, as the voice of love; if we share the same Spirit, and are capable of mercy and compassion, then I beg of you, make me very happy : have one love, one spirit, one feeling, do nothing through rivalry or vain conceit.

On the contrary, let each of you gently consider the others, as more important than yourselves. Do not seek your own interest, but, rather, that of others. Your attitude should be the same as Jesus Christ had.

Sunday, 27 September 2020 : Twenty-Sixth Sunday of Ordinary Time, World Day of Prayer for Migrants and Refugees (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 24 : 4bc-5, 6-7, 8-9

O YHVH, make known to me Your paths. Guide me in Your truth and instruct me, for You are my God, my Saviour; I hope in You all day long.

Remember Your compassion, o YHVH, Your unfailing love from of old. Remember not the sins of my youth, but in Your love remember me.

Good and upright, YHVH teaches sinners His way. He teaches the humble of heart and guides them in what is right.

Sunday, 27 September 2020 : Twenty-Sixth Sunday of Ordinary Time, World Day of Prayer for Migrants and Refugees (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Ezekiel 18 : 25-28

But you say : YHVH’s way is not just! Why, Israel! Is My position wrong? Is it not rather that yours is wrong? If the righteous man turns from his righteous deeds, and sins, then he dies, because of his sins.

And if the wicked man does what is good and right, after turning from the sins he committed, he will save his life. He will live and not die, because he has opened his eyes; and turned from the sins he had committed.

(Usus Antiquior) Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 27 September 2020 : Offertory, Secret Prayer of the Priest, Communion and Post-Communion Prayer

Liturgical Colour : Green

Offertory

Daniel 9 : 17, 18, 19

Oravi Deum meum ego Daniel, dicens : Exaudi, Domine, preces servi Tui : illumina faciem Tuam super sanctuarium Tuum : et propitius intende populum istum, super quem invocatum est Nomen Tuum, Deus.

 

English translation

I, Daniel, prayed to my God, saying, “Hear, o Lord, the prayers of Your servant, show Your face upon Your sanctuary, and favourably look down upon this people upon whom Your Name is invoked, o God.”

 

Secret Prayer of the Priest

Majestatem Tuam, Domine, suppliciter deprecamur : ut haec sancta, quae gerimus, et a praeteritis nos dilectis exuant et futuris. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium Tuum, qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

 

English translation

We implore Your majesty, o Lord, that the holy mysteries which we are celebrating may free us of past and save us from future sins. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who with You lives and reigns in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, world without end. Amen.

 

Communion

Psalm 75 : 12-13

Vovete et reddite Domino, Deo vestro, omnes, qui in circuitu Ejus affertis munera : terribili, et ei qui aufert spiritum principum : terribili apud omnes reges terrae.

 

English translation

Vow all of you, and pay to the Lord your God, all you who round about Him bringing presents, to Him who is terrible, even to Him Who takes away the spirit of princes, to the terrible with all the kings of the earth.

 

Post-Communion Prayer

Sanctificationibus Tuis, omnipotens Deus, et vitia nostra curentur, et remedia nobis aeterna proveniant. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium Tuum, qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

 

English translation

By Your grace, o Almighty God, let our wicked propensities be cured and everlasting remedies be forthcoming. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who with You lives and reigns in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, world without end. Amen.

(Usus Antiquior) Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 27 September 2020 : Holy Gospel

Liturgical Colour : Green

Sequentia Sancti Evangelii secundum Matthaeum – Continuation of the Holy Gospel according to St. Matthew

Matthew 22 : 34-46

In illo tempore : Accesserunt ad Jesum pharisaei : et interrogavit eum unus ex eis legis doctor, tentans eum : Magister, quod est mandatum magnum in lege? Ait illi Jesus : Diliges Dominum, Deum tuum, ex toto corde tuo et in tota anima tua et in tota mente tua. Hoc est maximum et primum mandatum.

Secundum autem simile est huic : Diliges proximum tuum sicut teipsum. In his duobus mandatis universa lex pendet et prophetae. Congregatis autem pharisaeis, interrogavit eos Jesus, dicens : Quid vobis videtur de Christo? Cujus Filius est? Dicunt ei : David.

Ait illis : Quomodo ergo David in spiritu vocat eum Dominum, dicens : Dixit Dominus Domino meo, sede a dextris meis, donec ponam inimicos tuos scabellum pedum tuorum? Si ergo David vocat eum Dominum, quomodo Filius ejus est? Et nemo poterat ei respondere verbum : neque ausus fuit quisquam ex illa die eum amplius interrogare.

 

English translation

At that time, the Pharisees came to Jesus, and one of them, a doctor of the Law, asked Him, tempting Him, “Master, which is the greatest commandment of the Law?” Jesus said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart, and with your whole soul, and with your whole mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment.”

“And the second is like this, ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the prophets.” And the Pharisees being gathered together, Jesus asked them, saying, “What do you think of Christ, whose Son is He?” They said to Him, “David.”

He said to them, “How then did David, in spirit, called Him Lord, saying, ‘The Lord said to my Lord, sit on My right hand until I make Your enemies Your footstool?’ If David then called Him Lord, how is He his Son?” And no man was able to answer Him a word, neither did any man, from that day forth, asked Him any more questions.

(Usus Antiquior) Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 27 September 2020 : Gradual and Alleluia

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 32 : 12, 6 and Psalm 101 : 2

Beata gens, cujus est Dominus Deus eorum : populus, quem elegit Dominus in hereditatem sibi.

Response : Verbo Domini caeli firmati sunt : et spiritu oris ejus omnis virtus eorum.

Alleluja, Alleluja.

Response : Domine, exaudi orationem meam, et clamor meus ad Te perveniat. Alleluja.

 

English translation

Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people whom He had chosen for His inheritance.

Response : By the word of the Lord the heavens were established, and all the power of them by the Spirit of His mouth.

Alleluia, Alleluia.

Response : O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to You. Alleluia.

(Usus Antiquior) Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 27 September 2020 : Epistle

Liturgical Colour : Green

Lectio Epistolae Beati Pauli Apostoli ad Ephesios – Lesson from the Epistle of Blessed Paul the Apostle to the Ephesians

Ephesians 4 : 1-6

Fratres : Obsecro vos ego vinctus in Domino, ut digne ambuletis vocatione, qua vocati estis, cum omni humilitate et mansuetudine, cum patientia, supportantes invicem in caritate, solliciti servare unitatem spiritus in vinculo pacis. Unum corpus et unus spiritus, sicut vocati estis in una spe vocationis vestrae.

Unus Dominus, una fides, unum baptisma. Unus Deus et Pater omnium, qui est super omnes et per omnia et in omnibus nobis. Qui est benedictus in saecula saeculorum. Amen.

 

English translation

Brethren, I, a prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that you walk worthily of the vocation in which you are called. With all humility and mildness, with patience, supporting one another in charity, careful to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. One body and one Spirit, as you are called in one hope of your calling.

One Lord, one faith, one baptism. One God and Father of all, Who is above all, and through all, and in us all, Who is blessed forever and ever. Amen.

(Usus Antiquior) Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 27 September 2020 : Introit and Collect

Liturgical Colour : Green

Introit

Psalm 118 : 137, 124, 1

Justus es, Domine, et rectum judicium Tuum : fac cum servo Tuo secundum misericordiam Tuam.

Beati immaculati in via : qui ambulant in lege Domini.

Response : Gloria Patri et Filio et Spiritui Sancto, sicut erat in principio, et nunc, et semper : et in saecula saeculorum. Amen.

 

English translation

You are just, o Lord, and Your judgment is right; deal with Your servant according to Your mercy.

Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the Law of the Lord.

Response : Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

 

Collect

Da, quaesumus, Domine, populo Tuo diabolica vitare contagia : et Te solum Deum pura mente sectari. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium Tuum, qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

 

English translation

Grant Your people, we beseech You, o Lord, to shun the defilements of the devil, and with pure hearts to follow You, the only God. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who with You lives and reigns in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, world without end. Amen.

Saturday, 26 September 2020 : 25th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Cosmas and St. Damian, Martyrs (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green or Red (Martyrs) or White (Saturday Mass of Our Lady)

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we are all reminded of the shortness of our lives, the temporary nature of our earthly existence, and how we are reminded not to lose ourselves in the pursuit of worldly matters and pleasures, just as we have been reminded in the past few days from this Book of Qoheleth or Ecclesiastes.

The author of this book clearly intended to remind the people of his time of the many excesses of worldly desires, their decadent lifestyle and refusal to obey the Law of God. And throughout history, we have seen how greed and attachment to desire had led to the conflicts that raged in wars and conquests, in the exploitation of the weak and the vulnerable, those who were poor and sick.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, this is what happens when we place our own selfish desires above our faith, and when we allow all these to tempt us and sway us to indulge in all sorts of worldly and materials pursuits. And we are reminded by these readings, including from our Psalm today, ‘Make us know the shortness of our lives, that we may gain wisdom of heart.’

Yes, often we may end up becoming foolish in our endless and persistent desire for all that I have mentioned earlier. We spent so much time to worry about all those things, and spent much of our energy to gain for ourselves all these so that we can gain satisfaction. And our greed makes us to desire for even more and more, never fully satisfying or fulfilling our needs and desires.

In the end, with all these accumulated in our hands, what are we going to do with it, brothers and sisters in Christ? Even the greatest piles of money and wealth can be destroyed or vanished overnight, as how past financial crises had showed us. Many despaired after the Great Depression after losing all that they had, even when they were very wealthy earlier on. And no amount of food, luxury and other goods can be lasting to us.

In the end, we must realise as how Job did, that naked we had been born into this world, empty and without any possessions, and thus in the same manner we shall depart from this world, from our earthly existence. We shall not bring any of our worldly possessions, or fame or glory with us. What we shall receive in the end, is either eternal glory and true joy with God, or eternity of regret and suffering, especially if we have rejected God for the sake of our worldly pursuits.

It is indeed a great folly for us to reject true happiness and joy that can be found in the Lord alone. But if we are wondering why this is the case, that is because we are easily tempted, and we often look for quick happiness and pleasure that all these false happiness are offering us. That is why many of us fell and failed in our journey of faith, as we prioritise our own selfish desires rather than our faith in God.

Today, all of us should look upon the examples of our holy predecessors to help guide us in what we should do in order to be faithful to God. We celebrate the feast of St. Cosmas and St. Damian, renowned saints, who were physicians by trade and according to some traditions, were twin brothers. They lived through the difficult years for the Christian faith, as the Roman Empire and its administration persecuted all the Christians, and forced them to abandon their faith on the pain of death.

They were renowned for their services as physicians, caring for the needs of the sick and all the diseased. And most notably, they refused to accept any payment or returns for their services, which they offered voluntarily and with much love and great care for those whom they treated. It was told that miracles even happened as there were those who were miraculously healed by their intercession.

When the Christian faith was persecuted even more harshly under the reign of the Roman Emperor Diocletian, both of them were arrested and were tortured to force them to abandon their Christian faith. But St. Cosmas and St. Damian remained faithful and chose to suffer, which according to some accounts including being hung on a cross, stoned and shot by arrows and finally they were beheaded, dying a martyr’s death.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, let us all look upon the exemplary faith of the brothers St. Cosmas and St. Damian, generous in love and compassion, putting God and their fellow brothers and sisters above their own needs and desires. Are we able and willing to follow that example? Let us all spend some time to discern carefully on these and do what we can to be ever more faithful and be genuine in how we live up to our Christian faith.

May the Lord be with us always, and may He guide us in our journey of faith. May He bless us and strengthen us, and empower us all to live virtuously and not be swayed or shaken by the many temptations of worldly matters. Let us all dedicate ourselves ever more faithfully to the Lord from now on and always. Amen.