(Usus Antiquior) Fourth Sunday of Lent, Laetare Sunday (I Classis) – Sunday, 31 March 2019 : Offertory, Secret Prayer of the Priest, Preface, Communion and Post-Communion Prayer

Liturgical Colour : Violet or Rose (Laetare Sunday)

Offertory

Psalm 134 : 3, 6

Laudate Dominum, quia benignus est : psallite Nomini Ejus, quoniam suavis est : omnia, quaecumque voluit, fecit in caelo et in terra.

English translation

Praise all of you the Lord, for He is good. Sing all of you to His Name, for He is sweet. Whatsoever He pleased, He had done in heaven and in earth.

Secret Prayer of the Priest

Sacrificiis praesentibus, Domine, quaesumus, intende placatus : ut et devotioni nostrae proficiant et saluti. 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 beseech You, o Lord, look favourably upon the sacrifices here before You, that they may profit us both for devotion and for 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.

Preface of Lent

Vere dignum et justum est, aequum et salutare, nos Tibi semper et ubique gratias agere : Domine, Sancte Pater omnipotens, aeterne Deus : Qui corporali jejunio vitia comprimis, mentem elevas, virtutem largiris et praemia : per Christum, Dominum nostrum.

Per quem majestatem Tuam laudant Angeli, adorant Dominationes, tremunt Potestates. Caeli caelorumque Virtutes ac beata Seraphim socia exsultatione concelebrant. Cum quibus et nostras voces ut admitti jubeas, deprecamur, supplici confessione dicentes :

English translation

It is truly meet and just, right and profitable, for us, at all times, and in all places, to give thanks to You, o Lord, the Holy One, the Father Almighty, the Everlasting God, Who on those who chastise their bodies by fasting had bestowed the restraining of evil passions, uplifting of heart, and the enjoying of virtue with its reward. Through Christ our Lord.

Through Whom the Angels praise, the Dominations adore, the Powers, trembling with awe, worship Your majesty, which the heavens, and the forces of heaven, together with the blessed Seraphim, joyfully magnify. And may You command that it be permitted to our lowliness to join with them in confessing You and unceasingly to repeat :

Communion

Psalm 121 : 3-4

Jerusalem, quae aedificatur ut civitas, cujus participatio ejus in idipsum : illuc enim ascenderunt tribus, tribus Domini, ad confitendum Nomini Tuo, Domine.

English translation

Jerusalem, which is built as a city, which is compact together, for thither did the tribes go up, the tribes of the Lord, to praise Your Name, o Lord.

Post-Communion Prayer

Da nobis, quaesumus, misericors Deus : ut sancta Tua, quibus incessanter explemur, sinceris tractemus obsequiis, et fideli semper mente sumamus. 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 merciful God, that we may treat with unfeigned veneration and ever receive with heartfelt faith Your holy rites which we constantly celebrate. 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) Fourth Sunday of Lent, Laetare Sunday (I Classis) – Sunday, 31 March 2019 : Holy Gospel

Liturgical Colour : Violet or Rose (Laetare Sunday)

Sequentia Sancti Evangelii secundum Joannem – Continuation from the Holy Gospel according to St. John

John 6 : 1-15

In illo tempore : Abiit Jesus trans mare Galilaeae, quod est Tiberiadis : et sequebatur eum multitudo magna, quia videbant signa, quae faciebat super his, qui infirmabantur. Subiit ergo in montem Jesus : et ibi sedebat cum discipulis Suis.

Erat autem proximum Pascha, dies festus Judaeorum. Cum sublevasset ergo oculos Jesus et vidisset, quia multitudo maxima venit ad eum, dixit ad Philippum : Unde ememus panes, et manducat hi? Hoc autem dicebat tentans eum : ipse enim sciebat, quid esset facturus.

Respondit ei Philippus : Ducentorum denariorum panes non sufficiunt eis, et unusquisque modicum quid accipiat. Dicit ei unus ex discipulis Ejus, Andreas, frater Simonis Petri : Est puer unus hic, qui habet quinque panes hordeaceos et duos pisces : sed haec quid sunt inter tantos?

Dixit ergo Jesus : Facite homines discumbere. Erat autem foenum multum in loco. Discubuerunt ergo viri, numero quasi quinque milia. Accepit ergo Jesus panes, et cum gratias egisset distribuit discumbentibus : similiter et ex piscibus, quantum volebant.

Ut autem impleti sunt, dixit discipulis Suis : Colligite quae superaverunt fragmenta, ne pereant. Collegerunt ergo, et impleverunt duodecim cophinos fragmentorum ex quinque panibus hordeaceis, quae superfuerunt his, qui manducaverant.

Illi ergo homines cum vidissent, quod Jesus fecerat signum, dicebant : Quia hic est vere Propheta, qui venturus est in mundum. Jesus ergo cum cognovisset, quia venturi essent, ut raperent eum et facerent eum regem, fugit iterum in montem ipse solus.

English translation

At that time, Jesus went over the Sea of Galilee, which is that of Tiberias, and a great multitude followed Him, because they saw the miracles which He did on those who were diseased. Jesus therefore went up into a mountain, and there He sat with His disciples.

Now the Pasch, the festival day of the Jews, was near at hand. When Jesus therefore had lifted up His eyes, and saw that a very great multitude came to Him, He said to Philip, “Whence shall we buy bread that these may eat?” And this He said to try him, for He Himself knew what He would do.

Philip answered, “Two hundred denarius worth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one may take a little.” One of His disciples, Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter, said to Him, “There is a boy here who had five barley loaves and two fishes, but what are these among so many?”

Then Jesus said, “Make the men sit down.” Now there was much grass in the place. The men therefore sat down, in number about five thousand. And Jesus took the loaves, and when He had given thanks, He distributed to those who sat down. In the same manner also of the fishes, as much as they would.

And when they were filled, He said to His disciples, “Gather up the fragments that remain, lest they be lost.” They gathered up therefore, and filled twelve baskets with the fragments of the twelve barley loaves, which remained over and above to those who had eaten.

Now those men, when they had seen what a miracle Jesus had done, said, “This is of a truth the Prophet Who is to come into the world.” Jesus therefore, when He knew that they would come to take Him by force and make Him King, fled again into the mountain by Himself alone.

(Usus Antiquior) Fourth Sunday of Lent, Laetare Sunday (I Classis) – Sunday, 31 March 2019 : Gradual and Tract

Liturgical Colour : Violet or Rose (Laetare Sunday)

Gradual

Psalm 121 : 1, 7

Laetatus sum in his, quae dicta sunt mihi : in domum Domini ibimus.

Response : Fiat pax in virtute Tua : et abundantia in turribus Tuis.

English translation

I rejoiced at the things that were said to me, we shall go into the house of the Lord.

Response : Let peace be in your strength, and abundance in your towers.

Tract

Psalm 124 : 1-2

Qui confidunt in Domino, sicut mons Sion : non commovebitur in aeternum, qui habitat in Jerusalem.

Response : Montes in circuitu ejus : et Dominus in circuitu populi Sui, ex hoc nunc et usque in saeculum.

English translation

They who trust in the Lord shall be as Mount Zion, he shall not be moved forever, those who dwell in Jerusalem.

Response : Mountains are round about it, so the Lord is round about His people, from henceforth now and forever.

(Usus Antiquior) Fourth Sunday of Lent, Laetare Sunday (I Classis) – Sunday, 31 March 2019 : Epistle

Liturgical Colour : Violet or Rose (Laetare Sunday)

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

Galatians 4 : 22-31

Fratres : Scriptum est : Quoniam Abraham duos filios habuit : unum de ancilla, et unum de libera. Sed qui de ancilla, secundum carnem natus est : qui autem de libera, per repromissionem : quae sunt per allegoriam dicta.

Haec enim sunt duo testamenta. Unum quidem in monte Sina, in servitutem generans : quae est Agar : Sina enim mons est in Arabia, qui conjunctus est ei, quae nunc est Jerusalem, et servit cum filiis suis.

Illa autem, quae sursum est Jerusalem, libera est, quae est mater nostra. Scriptum est enim : Laetare, sterilis, quae non paris : erumpe, et clama, quae non parturis : quia multi filii desertae, magis quam ejus, quae habet virum.

Nos autem, fratres, secundum Isaac promissionis filii sumus. Sed quomodo tunc is, qui secundum carnem natus fuerat, persequebantur eum, qui secundum spiritum : ita et nunc. Sed quid dicit Scriptura? Ejice ancillam et filium ejus : non enim heres erit filius ancillae cum filio liberae. Itaque, fratres, non sumus ancillae filii, sed liberae : qua libertate Christus nos liberavit.

English translation

Brethren, it is written that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bond-woman, and the other by a free woman. But he who was of the bond-woman was born according to the flesh, but he of the free woman was by promise. Which things are said by an allegory.

For these are the two testaments, the one from Mount Sinai, engendering unto bondage, which is Hagar, for Sinai is a mountain in Arabia, which had affinity to that Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children.

But that Jerusalem which is above is free, which is our mother. For it is written, “Rejoice, you barren ones who do not bear, break forth and cry, you who do not travail, for many are the children of the desolate, more than of her who had a husband.”

Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise. But as then he who was born according to the flesh persecuted he who was after the spirit, so it is also now. But what does the Scripture say? Cast out the bond-woman and her son, for the son of the bond-woman shall not be heir with the son of the free woman. So then, brethren, we are not the children of the bond-woman, but of the free, by the freedom wherewith Christ had made us free.

(Usus Antiquior) Fourth Sunday of Lent, Laetare Sunday (I Classis) – Sunday, 31 March 2019 : Introit and Collect

Liturgical Colour : Violet or Rose (Laetare Sunday)

Introit

Isaiah 66 : 10, 11 and Psalm 121 : 1

Laetare, Jerusalem : et conventum facite, omnes qui diligitis eam : gaudete cum laetitia, qui in tristitia fuistis : ut exsultetis, et satiemini ab uberibus consolationis vestrae.

Laetatus sum in his, quae dicta sunt mihi : in domum Domini ibimus.

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

English translation

Rejoice, o Jerusalem, and come together all you who love her, rejoice with joy, you who have been in sorrow, that you may exult and be filled from your breasts of your consolation.

I rejoiced at the things that were said to me, we shall go into the house 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

Concede, quaesumus, omnipotens Deus : ut, qui ex merito nostrae actionis affligimur, Tuae gratiae consolatione respiremus. 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, we beseech You, o Almighty God, that we who justly suffer for our deeds, may be relieved by the consolation of Your grace. 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, 30 March 2019 : 3rd Week of Lent (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Purple/Violet

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we listened to the words of the Scripture passages in which we heard about the pride of the Pharisee and the humility of the tax collector, in a parable that the Lord Jesus told to the people and His disciples. Using that parable, the Lord wanted to show just how great God’s mercy and love for each and every one of us is, that no one is truly excluded or prevented from receiving His merciful love.

The Lord mentioned a tax collector and a Pharisee because of the prejudices and perceptions that each one of them experienced at that time. The tax collectors were often treated with disdain and contempt, with distrust and suspicion due to the nature of their work in collecting the taxes for the Roman governor and administration, while the Pharisees were treated with reverence and adulation because of their respected position in the community.

Therefore, there was then a strong bias against the tax collectors, who were collectively treated as rebels, traitors and unworthy of being members of the community of the people of God. The tax collectors were shunned and treated as if they were great sinners who were incapable of receiving God’s mercy and unworthy of God’s love. This is such while the Pharisees were seen as holy and pious group of people, who always made public their prayers and devotions before everyone.

Through the parable He mentioned, the Lord Jesus wanted to break this prejudice and bias, which the people have had in their hearts and minds. He wanted to show them that even a tax collector in truth was aware of the sins and whatever wicked things he had done, and having been treated so badly by the community in general, it was quite certain that they must have felt very bad about their own actions.

But the tax collector in the parable, knowing and understanding about his own shortcomings, humbled himself before God and begged Him to show mercy and compassion, admitting his sins before Him, unlike the Pharisee who did not just brag about his own achievements and supposed piety, but also looked down and ridiculed the tax collector before God, thinking of himself as being more worthy than the tax collector.

In the eyes of God, a repentant sinner is far more worthy than a proud person who may outwardly be pious and good, but in truth, is still a sinner in heart. In fact, pride is the number one reason why many of us have continued to live in sin, firstly because we refused to admit that we have been wrong in our way of life, and secondly, we have that false sense of security and even superiority, in thinking that we are better off than others who seem to be deeper in sin than us.

Pride is a great obstacle in our path and journey towards God’s grace and loving mercy, for pride keeps us hardhearted and stubborn, unwilling to seek healing for the sins and wicked things we have committed all the while. And it also often gives us the reason and excuse to say no to God’s offer of mercy and forgiveness. But at what cost, brothers and sisters in Christ? Nothing less than the salvation of our souls!

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, we are all called to reflect on our own lives, on our every actions, words and deeds. And surely we will become more aware of how sinful or broken we have been in life. But are we going to allow our sins and our brokenness to continue to affect us through life? Or are we going to seek God’s forgiveness and mercy, He Who alone is capable of healing us from our sins?

Let us all therefore pray for the grace to be humble like the tax collector in the parable that Jesus said to the people. Let us pray for the grace to be aware of how sinful we have been, and how broken our lives have become, and ultimately for the grace and courage to seek healing through forgiveness that comes generously from God alone. May the Lord continue to guide us through our journey in this season of Lent and beyond. Amen.

Saturday, 30 March 2019 : 3rd Week of Lent (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Purple/Violet

Luke 18 : 9-14

At that time, Jesus told another parable to some people, fully convinced of their own righteousness, who looked down on others : “Two men went up to the Temple to pray; one was a Pharisee, and the other a tax collector.”

“The Pharisee stood by himself, and said, ‘I thank You, God, that I am not like other people, grasping, crooked, adulterous, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week, and give a tenth of all my income to the Temple.’ In the meantime the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘O God, be merciful to me, a sinner.’”

“I tell you, when this man went back to his house, he had been reconciled with God, but not the other. For whoever makes himself out to be great will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be raised up.”