Wednesday, 4 October 2017 : 26th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Francis of Assisi (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Nehemiah 2 : 1-8

In the month of Nisan, in the twentieth year of king Artaxerxes, I was doing my duty as cupbearer. I took up the wine and gave it to the king. I had never been sad before the king in the past. So, the king said to me, “Why do you look sad? You do not look sick. Is there something that bothers you?”

I became hesitant. And I said, “May the king live forever! How could I afford not to be sad when the city where my ancestors are buried lies in ruins and its gates are burnt down?” The king said to me, “What do you want, then?” I asked help of God from heaven and said to the king, “If it seems good to the king and if he is pleased with my work, then may he send me to the land of Judah, to the city where my ancestors are buried, that I may rebuild it.”

The queen was sitting beside the king, and the king asked me, “How long will you be gone? When will you be back?” I told him the date and he allowed me to leave. And I said to the king, “If it pleases the king, may you give me letters for the governors of the province of the other side of the River that I may travel to Judah; and also a letter to Asaph, the caretaker of the king’s forest, for I will need wood for the gates of the citadel near the Temple, for the walls of the city and for the house where I shall live.”

The good hand of God was supporting me, so that the king gave me what I asked.

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