Sunday, 26 August 2018 : Twenty-First Sunday of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Joshua 24 : 1-2a, 15-17, 18b

Joshua summoned all the tribes of Israel in Shechem, and assembled the elders, judges and secretaries. And together they presented themselves before God.

Addressing the people, Joshua said to them : “If you do not want to serve YHVH, make known this very day whom you shall serve – whether they be the gods your ancestors served in Mesopotamia or the gods of the Amorites who formerly occupied the land in which you now live. As for me, I and my household will serve YHVH.”

The people answered : “May God not permit that we ever abandon YHVH to serve other gods! For it was He Who brought us and our ancestors out of Egypt, the house of slavery. It was He Who did those great wonders that we have seen; He protected us on the way and through all the land where we passed. So we shall also serve YHVH : He is our God!”

(Usus Antiquior) Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 26 August 2018 : Offertory, Secret Prayer of the Priest, Communion and Post-Communion Prayer

Liturgical Colour : Green

Offertory

Psalm 33 : 8-9

Immittet Angelus Domini in circuitu timentium eum, et eripiet eos : gustate et videte, quoniam suavis est Dominus.

 

English translation

The angel of the Lord shall encamp round about those who fear Him, and shall deliver them. O taste, and see that the Lord is sweet!

 

Secret Prayer of the Priest

Concede nobis, Domine, quaesumus, ut haec hostia salutaris et nostrorum fiat purgatio delictorum, et Tuae propitiatio potestatis. 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 us, we beseech You, o Lord, that this saving Victim may become both the cleansing of our sins, and the propitiation of Your might. 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

Matthew 6 : 33

Primum quaerite regnum Dei, et omnia adjicientur vobis, dicit Dominus.

 

English translation

Seek first the kingdom of God and all things shall be added unto you, says the Lord.

 

Post-Communion Prayer

Purificent semper et muniant Tua sacramenta nos, Deus : et ad perpetuae ducant salvationis effectum. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium Tuum, qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

 

English translation

May Your Sacraments, o God, ever purify and fortify us, and bring us to the effect of everlasting salvation. 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) Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 26 August 2018 : Holy Gospel

Liturgical Colour : Green

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

Matthew 6 : 24-33

In illo tempore : Dixit Jesus discipulis Suis : Nemo potest duobus dominis servire : aut enim unum odio habebit, et alterum diliget : aut unum sustinebit, et alterum contemnet. Non potestis Deo servire et mammonae.

Ideo dico vobis, ne solliciti sitis animae vestrae, quid manducetis, neque corpori vestro, quid induamini. Nonne anima plus est quam esca : et corpus plus quam vestimentum? Respicite volatilia caeli, quoniam non serunt neque metunt neque congregant in horrea : et Pater vester caelestis pascit illa. Nonne vos magis pluris estis illis?

Quis autem vestrum cogitans potest adjicere ad staturam suam cubitum unum? Et de vestimento quid solliciti estis? Considerate lilia agri, quomodo crescunt : non laborant neque nent. Dico autem vobis, quoniam nec Salomon in omni gloria sua coopertus est sicut unum ex istis.

Si autem foenum agri, quod hodie est et cras in clibanum mittitur, Deus sic vestit : quanto magis vos, modicae fidei? Nolite ergo soliciti esse, dicentes : Quid manducabimus aut quid bibemus aut quo operimur? Haec enim omnia gentes inquirunt. Scit enim Pater vester, quia his omnibus indigetis. Quaerite ergo primum regnum Dei et justitiam ejus : et haec omnia adjicientur vobis.

 

English translation

At that time, Jesus said to His disciples, “No man can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will sustain the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.”

“Therefore I say to you, do not be solicitous for your life, what you shall eat, nor for your body, what you shall put on. Is not the life more than the meat, and the body more than that of the raiment? Behold the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor do they reap, nor gather into barns, and your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of much more value than them?”

“And which of you, by taking thought, can add to his stature one cubit? And for raiment why are you solicitous? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow. They do not labour, and neither do they spin, but I say to you, that not even Solomon in all his glory was arrayed as one of these.”

“Now if God so clothe the grass of the field, which is today, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, how much more you, o you of little faith! Do not be solicitous therefore, saying, what shall we eat, or what shall we drink or wherewith shall we be clothed? For after all these things do the heathen seek. For your Father knows that you have need of all these things. Seek all of you therefore first the kingdom of God, and His justice, and all these things shall be added unto you.”

(Usus Antiquior) Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 26 August 2018 : Gradual and Alleluia

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 117 : 8-9 and Psalm 94 : 1

Bonum est confidere in Domino, quam confidere in homine.

Response : Bonum est sperare in Domino, quam sperare in principibus.

Alleluja, Alleluja.

Response : Venite, exsultemus Domino, jubilemus Deo, salutari nostro. Alleluja.

 

English translation

It is good to confide in the Lord, rather than to have confidence in man.

Response : It is good to trust in the Lord, rather than to trust in princes.

Alleluia, Alleluia.

Response : Come, let us praise the Lord with joy, let us joyfully sing to God our Saviour. Alleluia.

(Usus Antiquior) Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 26 August 2018 : Epistle

Liturgical Colour : Green

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

Galatians 5 : 16-24

Fratres : Spiritu ambulate, et desideria carnis non perficietis. Caro enim concupiscit adversus spiritum, spiritus autem adversus carnem : haec enim sibi invicem adversantur, ut non quaecumque vultis, illa faciatis.

Quod si spiritu ducimini, non estis sub lege. Manifesta sunt autem opera carnis, quae sunt fornicatio, immunditia, impudicitia, luxuria, idolorum servitus, veneficia, inimicitiae, contentiones, aemulationes, irae, rixae, dissensiones, sectae, invidiae, homicidia, ebrietates, comessationes, et his similia : quae praedico vobis, sicut praedixi : quoniam, qui talia agunt, regnum Dei non consequantur.

Fructus autem Spiritus est : caritas, gaudium, pax, patientia, benignitas, bonitas, longanimitas, mansuetudo, fides, modestia, continentia, castitas. Adversus hujusmodi non est lex. Qui autem sunt Christi, carnem suam crucifixerunt cum vitiis et concupiscentiis.

 

English translation

Brethren, walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfil the lusts of the flesh, for the flesh lusts against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh, for these are contrary one to another, so that you do not do the things that you would.

But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are fornication, uncleanness, immodesty, luxury, idolatry, witchcrafts, enmities, contentions, emulations, wraths, quarrels, dissensions, sects, envies, murders, drunkenness, revellings and such like, of that which I foretell you, as I have foretold to you, that they who do such things shall not obtain the kingdom of God.

But the fruit of the Spirit is charity, joy, peace, patience, benignity, goodness, longanimity, mildness, faith, modesty, continency, chastity. Against such there is no law. And those who belong to Christ have crucified their flesh with the vices and conscupiscences.

(Usus Antiquior) Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 26 August 2018 : Introit and Collect

Liturgical Colour : Green

Introit

Psalm 83 : 10-11, 2-3

Protector noster, aspice, Deus, et respice in faciem Christi Tui : quia melior est dies una in atriis Tuis super milia.

Quam dilecta tabernacula Tua, Domine virtutum! Concupiscit, et deficit anima mea in atria Domini.

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

 

English translation

Behold, o God, our Protector, and look on the face of Your Christ. For better is one day in Your courts above thousands.

How lovely are Your tabernacles, o Lord of hosts! My soul longs and faints for the courts 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

Custodi, Domine, quaesumus, Ecclesiam Tuam propitiatione perpetua : et quia sine Te labitur humana mortalitas; Tuis semper auxiliis et abstrahatur a noxiis et ad salutaria dirigatur. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium Tuum, qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

 

English translation

Guard Your Church, we beseech You, o Lord, with Your continual kindness, and because without You human frailty falls, let it, by Your assistance, ever be both withheld from harm and guided to what is salutary. 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, 25 August 2018 : 20th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Louis, and St. Joseph Calasanz, Priest (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green or White (Saints, Priests or Saturday Mass of Our Lady)

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we listened to the readings from the Scriptures, beginning with the vision of Ezekiel the prophet, who saw the glory of God and His Throne in heaven. He saw God enthroned in glory and all the Angels worshipping and adoring His majesty. This reading is chosen today, in tandem with the Gospel passage, to show us all that although we cannot see God directly now, but truly, He is the Lord and Master of all things, of the whole entire universe.

He is the One around Whom our lives should be revolving. He is the one true focus of our lives, and He should be at the very centre of our existence. But unfortunately, in our world today, as how it was during the time of the prophet Ezekiel and the time of our Lord’s coming, the Lord has often been forgotten and relegated to a less than important or prominent position in the hearts and minds of men.

At the time of the prophet Ezekiel, God has been so forgotten, after generations of people who refused to obey the Lord’s laws and commandments and who worshipped the pagan idols and heathen gods that they were scattered throughout the nations, carried into exile in the land of Babylon. The Temple of Jerusalem and the city were destroyed, and the kingdom of Israel and Judah were no more.

They were not able to commit themselves to the Covenant which God had made with their ancestors. They chose to find the easy way out, by looking for the idols of the people around them, which offered them worldly pleasures, prestige and all sorts of things they could not gain through the Lord, their God. Many of them wanted to be accepted by their pagan neighbours, and therefore, followed their customs and false beliefs.

At the time of the Lord Jesus’ ministry, the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law were the ones entrusted to safeguard the Jewish customs and practices, that they zealously guarded against all sorts of perceived opposition or aberrations. To them, it was their interpretation of how the Law should be enacted and lived up to by the people that was right, and not any other versions or ways.

And they took great pride in this privileged position, to the point that they became boastful, arrogant and filled with ambition. This was what the Lord Jesus took issue with, as He rebuked them before the people, telling them not to follow their examples in how lived their faith lives. He rebuked them for their pride and their self-centredness, in wanting to be seen by others in their pious devotions and actions.

What is the problem here, brothers and sisters in Christ? It was the ego and pride that were in the hearts of man that were the problems. We were often so full of ourselves, thinking that we were the best, and we alone knew what was the best for us. Our selfish desires and wants for worldly comfort, happiness, pleasures, joys, all these temptations eventually overcome us, and fill us such that we are unable to realise how central is the Lord’s role in our lives and how insignificant our power and greatness are in the face of God’s own glory and power.

Now, the Lord Jesus Himself in the Gospel passage of this day told us of what we as Christians should do in order to prevent this from happening. First of all, as Christians we must be humble and not be proud. After all, everything that we are, our power, intellect, strength, material wealth and all else are in fact due to God’s grace and blessings. We would have nothing without God, and without Him, everything that we have, are meaningless.

For all the glory, the fame, the prestige, honour and wealth that the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law had gathered, all of them were merely fleeting and temporary. They were only gathering for themselves worldly treasures that could be easily destroyed at any time. And this came true when the Temple of Jerusalem itself, with the entire caste of the Pharisees and the elites of the Jewish society overthrown during a failed rebellion against the Romans just a few decades after the death and resurrection of Christ.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, today we celebrate the feast of two holy man of God, saints whose life examples and actions can become inspiration for us to follow in how we live our own lives with faith. St. Louis was a famous King of France, as King Louis IX during the thirteenth century, who was remembered for his great reputation as a just and wise ruler, his commitment to the faith and the betterment of the Church, his participation in the Holy Crusade to reclaim the Holy Land for Christendom.

Although he was a great king who possessed much power and amassed great prestige and honour from his many years as ruler of the great kingdom of France, with one of the mightiest and best-equipped armies of Christendom, but St. Louis remained humble and dedicated to the mission to which he was called as king, that is to serve his people with true dedication and love. He was remembered for his great acts of justice and chivalry, his care for the poor and the oppressed throughout his kingdom.

Essentially, St. Louis followed the examples set by Christ Himself, Our Lord and King. Even though Jesus was truly King above all kings and has all authority above all authority, but He remained humble in all things, and He showed it by example, serving even His disciples by washing their feet, a job which at that time customarily done by a slave. St. Louis showed the example of Christian leadership as first shown by the Lord Himself.

Meanwhile, St. Joseph Calasanz was a Spanish priest and renowned educator, who was also the founder of the religious order known as the Piarists. He and his fellow religious was remembered for their loving care for the poor and the less fortunate, providing for their needs and giving free education for their children. He helped to establish the structures in place to provide care for these less fortunate among the community of the faithful.

The love which St. Joseph Calasanz and his fellow religious and his dedication to the less fortunate and the needy should be inspirations for us to follow, together with the faith and great commitment shown by St. Louis. Let us all therefore follow in their footsteps and turn towards the Lord, with great humility and desire to love Him more than anything else, even more than ourselves.

If we have been proud, arrogant or selfish, then perhaps it is indeed time for us to reorientate ourselves and become true Christians through which we can truly follow the Lord with all of our hearts. May the Lord continue to guide us all, as we grow in faith, in love for Him and for our brethren, and in our humility. Amen.