Sunday, 23 February 2020 : Seventh Sunday of Ordinary Time (Second Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

1 Corinthians 3 : 16-23

Do you not know that you are God’s temple, and that God’s Spirit abides within you? If anyone destroys the Temple of God, God will destroy him. God’s Temple is holy, and you are this Temple.

Do not deceive yourselves. If anyone of you considers himself wise in the ways of the world, let him become a fool, so that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness in God’s eyes. To this, Scripture says : God catches the wise in their own wisdom. It also says : The Lord knows the reasoning of the wise, that it is useless.

Because of this, let no one boast about human beings, for everything belongs to You, Paul, Apollos, Cephas – life, death, the present and the future. Everything is Yours, and you, you belong to Christ, and Christ is of God.

Sunday, 23 February 2020 : Seventh Sunday of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 102 : 1-2, 3-4, 8 and 10, 12-13

Bless the Lord, my soul; all my being, bless His holy Name! Bless the Lord, my soul, and do not forget all His kindness.

He forgives all your sins and heals all your sickness; He redeems your life from destruction and crowns you with love and compassion.

The Lord is gracious and merciful, abounding in love and slow to anger. He does not treat us according to our sins, nor does He punish us as we deserve.

As far as the east is from the west, so far does He remove from us our sins. As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord pities those who fear Him.

Sunday, 23 February 2020 : Seventh Sunday of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Leviticus 19 : 1-2, 17-18

YHVH spoke to Moses and said, “Speak to the entire assembly of the people of Israel and say to them : Be holy for I, YHVH, your God, am holy.

Do not hate your brother in your heart; rebuke your neighbour frankly so as not to share in his guilt. Do not seek revenge or nurture a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbour as yourself; I am YHVH.

(Usus Antiquior) Quinquagesima Sunday (II Classis) – Sunday, 23 February 2020 : Offertory, Secret Prayer of the Priest, Communion and Post-Communion Prayer

Liturgical Colour : Violet

Offertory

Psalm 118 : 12-13

Benedictus es, Domine, doce me justificationes Tuas : in labiis meis pronuntiavi omnia judicia oris Tui.

English translation

Blessed are You, o Lord. Teach me Your justifications. With my lips I have pronounced all the judgments of Your mouth.

Secret Prayer of the Priest

Haec hostia, Domine, quaesumus, emundet nostra delicta : et, ad sacrificium celebrandum, subditorum Tibi corpora mentesque sanctificet. 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 this offering, we beseech You, o Lord, cleanse away our sins, sanctify us in soul and body, and fit us, Your servants, for the celebration of the sacrifice. 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 77 : 29-30

Manducaverunt, et saturari sunt nimis, et desiderium eorum attulit eis Dominus : non sunt fraudati a desiderio suo.

English translation

They did eat, and were filled exceedingly, and the Lord gave them their desire. They were not defrauded of that which they craved.

Post-Communion Prayer

Quaesumus, omnipotens Deus : ut, qui caelestia alimenta percepimus, per haec contra omnia adversa muniamur. 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 Almighty God, that we who have partaken of heavenly nourishment, may be fortified by it against all adversities. 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) Quinquagesima Sunday (II Classis) – Sunday, 23 February 2020 : Holy Gospel

Liturgical Colour : Violet

Sequentia Sancti Evangelii secundum Lucam – Continuation of the Holy Gospel according to St. Luke

Luke 18 : 31-43

In illo tempore : Assumpsit Jesus duodecim, et ait illis : Ecce, ascendimus Jerosolymam, et consummabuntur omnia, quae scripta sunt per Prophetas de Filio Hominis. Tradetur enim Gentibus, et illudetur, et flagellabitur, et conspuetur : et postquam flagellaverint, occident eum, et tertia die resurget.

Et ipsi nihil horum intellexerunt, et erat verbum istud absconditum ab eis, et non intellegebant quae dicebantur. Factum est autem, cum appropinquaret Jericho, caecus quidam sedebat secus viam, mendicans. Et cum audiret turbam praetereuntem, interrogabat, quid hoc esset. Dixerunt autem ei, quod Jesus Nazarenus transiret.

Et clamavit, dicens : Jesu, Fili David, miserere mei. Et qui praeibant, increpabant eum, ut taceret. Ipse vero multo magis clamabat : Fili David, miserere mei. Stans autem Jesus, jussit illum adduci ad se. Et cum appropinquasset, interrogavit illum, dicens : Quid tibi vis faciam?

At ille dixit : Domine, ut videam. Et Jesus dixit illi : Respice, fides tua te salvum fecit. Et confestim vidit, et sequebatur illum, magnificans Deum. Et omnis plebs ut vidit, dedit laudem Deo.

English translation

At that time, Jesus took unto Him the Twelve, and said to them, “Behold we go up to Jerusalem, and all things shall be accomplished which were written by the prophets concerning the Son of Man. For He shall be delivered to the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, scourged, and spat upon, and after they have scourged Him, they will put Him to death, and on the third day He shall rise again.”

And they understood none of these things, and this word was hidden from them, and they did not understand the things that were said. Now it came to pass, when He drew nigh to Jericho, that a certain blind man sat by the wayside, begging. And when he heard the multitude passing by, he asked what this meant. And they told him that Jesus of Nazareth was passing by.

And he cried out, saying, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” And they who went before, rebuked him, that he should hold his peace. But he cried out much more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” And Jesus standing, commanded him to be brought to Him, and when he came near, He asked him saying, “What will you want that I do to you?”

But he said, “Lord, that I may see.” And Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight. Your faith had made you whole.” And immediately, he could see, and followed Him, glorifying God, and all the people when they saw it, gave praise to God.

(Usus Antiquior) Quinquagesima Sunday (II Classis) – Sunday, 23 February 2020 : Gradual and Tract

Liturgical Colour : Violet

Gradual

Psalm 76 : 15, 16

Tu es Deus qui facis mirabilia solus : notam fecisti in gentibus virtutem Tuam.

Response : Liberasti in bracchio Tuo populum Tuum, filios Israel et Joseph.

English translation

You are the God Who alone does wonders. You have made Your power known among the nations.

Response : With Your arm You have redeemed Your people, the children of Israel and of Joseph.

Tract

Psalm 99 : 1-2

Jubilate Deo, omnis terra : servite Domino in laetitia.

Response : Intrate in conspectu Ejus in exsultatione : scitote, quod Dominus ipse est Deus.

Response : Ipse fecit nos, et non ipsi nos : nos autem populus Ejus, et oves pascuae Ejus.

English translation

Sing joyfully to God all the earth. Serve all of you the Lord with gladness.

Response : Come in before His presence with exceeding great joy. Know all of you that the Lord, He is God.

Response : He made us, and not we ourselves, but we are His people, and the sheep of His pasture.

(Usus Antiquior) Quinquagesima Sunday (II Classis) – Sunday, 23 February 2020 : Epistle

Liturgical Colour : Violet

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

1 Corinthians 13 : 1-13

Fratres : Si linguis hominum loquar et Angelorum, caritatem autem non habeam, factus sum velut aes sonans aut cymbalum tinniens. Et si habuero prophetiam, et noverim mysteria omnia et omnem scientiam : et si habuero omnem fidem, ita ut montes transferam, caritatem autem non habuero, nihil sum.

Et si distribuero in cibos pauperum omnes facultates meas, et si tradidero corpus meum, ita ut ardeam, caritatem autem non habuero, nihil mihi prodest. Caritas patiens est, benigna est : caritas non aemulatur, non agit perperam, non inflatur, non est ambitiosa, non quaerit quae sua sunt, non irritatur, non cogitat malum, non gaudet super iniquitate, congaudet autem veritati : omnia suffert, omnia credit, omnia sperat, omnia sustinet.

Caritas numquam excidit : sive prophetiae evacuabuntur, sive linguae cessabunt, sive scientia destruetur. Ex parte enim cognoscimus, et ex parte prophetamus. Cum autem venerit quod perfectum est, evacuabitur quod ex parte est. Cum essem parvulus, loquebar ut parvulus, sapiebam ut parvulus, cogitabam ut parvulus. Quando autem factus sum vir, evacuavi quae erant parvuli.

Videmus nunc per speculum in aenigmate : tunc autem facie ad faciem. Nunc cognosco ex parte : tunc autem cognoscam, sicut et cognitus sum. Nunc autem manent fides, spes, caritas, tria haec : major autem horum est caritas.

English translation

Brethren, if I speak with the tongues of men, and of Angels, and does not have charity, I become like a sounding brass or a tinkling cymbal. And if I should have prophecy, and know all mysteries, and all knowledge, and if I should have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and does not have charity, I am nothing.

And if I should distribute all my goods to feed the poor, and if I should deliver my body to be burnt, and does not have charity, it does not profit me anything.

Charity is patient, is kind, charity does not envy, it does not deal perversely, it is not puffed up, it is not ambitious, it does not seek her own, it is not provoked to anger, it does not think any evil, it does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoiced in the truth, bears all things, believes in all things, hopes in all things, and endures all things.

Charity never falls away, whether prophecies shall be made void, or tongues shall cease or knowledge shall be destroyed. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect has come, that which is in part shall be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child. But when I became a man, I put away the things of a child.

We see now through a glass in a dark manner, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know even as I am known. And now there remain faith, hope and charity. These three, but the greatest of these is charity.

(Usus Antiquior) Quinquagesima Sunday (II Classis) – Sunday, 23 February 2020 : Introit and Collect

Liturgical Colour : Violet

Introit

Psalm 30 : 3-4 and 2

Esto mihi in Deum protectorem, et in locum refugii, ut salvum me facias : quoniam firmamentum meum et refugium meum es Tu : et propter Nomen Tuum dux mihi eris, et enutries me.

In Te, Domine, speravi, non confundar in aeternum : in justitia Tua libera me et eripe me.

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

English translation

Be You, unto me a God, a Protector, and a place of refuge, to save me. For You are my strength, and my refuge, and for Your Name’s sake You will be my Leader and will nourish me.

In You, o Lord, have I hoped, let me never be confounded. Deliver me in Your justice, and set me free.

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

Preces nostras, quaesumus, Domine, clementer exaudi : atque, a peccatorum vinculis absolutos, ab omni nos adversitate custodi. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium Tuum, qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

English translation

Of Your clemency hearken to our prayers, o Lord, loosen us from the bonds of sin, and keep us from all adversity. 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, 22 February 2020 : Feast of the Chair of St. Peter the Apostle (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day all of us celebrate together with the whole Church the feast of the Chair of St. Peter the Apostle. It must have been quite bewildering for some of us why the Church chose to celebrate the feast of a chair, but in this case, the chair mentioned here as being the Chair of St. Peter, was more than just of any physical chair, for the meaning and significance of this Feast today is tied very much to the history and the foundation of our Church.

For the Chair being referred to here, while it represents the actual chair and seat of the Apostle St. Peter, the Cathedra Sancti Petri which by tradition is the wooden chair encased in gold and enshrined at the Altar of the Chair of the Basilica of St. Peter as the chair which St. Peter himself once used as his Cathedra, it also symbolically represents his teaching authority and the powers which God has entrusted to St. Peter as the Chief Apostle and His Vicar on earth.

Just like for the bishops of the Church, who has their seat of authority, or the Cathedra located at the church which is then named and known as the Cathedral of their respective dioceses, St. Peter as the chief of all the bishops and all the disciples of the Lord also has his Cathedra, both as the actual seat as well as the symbolic authority of his leadership as the shepherd of the whole entire Universal Church, which we celebrate and focus on today.

In our first reading today, taken from the Epistle of St. Peter, we heard of the Apostle speaking to the faithful with regards to the roles and responsibilities of the elders or the bishops in the community of the faithful. And St. Peter in today’s passage addressed those same elders or bishops directly with the exhortation and reminder that they, as the shepherds of God’s flock must lead God’s people to His truth and salvation, and they must labour hard and give their best for the sake of the flock entrusted to them.

It was through the authority which Christ has entrusted to St. Peter that the latter, as the Vicar of the one and true Head of the Church, and as the Shepherd of all the shepherds of God’s flock, that St. Peter spoke, inspiring those bishops who had been appointed to succeed the works of the Apostles and the first bishops of the Church. That was how the Church of God began and continued to flourish in its very beginning, as more and more people came to follow God and more and more people were called to serve them as deacons, priests and bishops.

The role which St. Peter played in the early history of the Church was indeed very crucial and important as several occasions in the Acts of the Apostles showed us how St. Peter was clearly the leader of the Apostles and the disciples, settling disputes and problems within the growing Christian communities, and as the one indeed who had been entrusted by Christ Himself with the governance of His Church in this world.

This was what we heard in our Gospel passage today, in the account of the establishment of the Church by God, through the words He Himself had spoken, as He was acknowledged by St. Peter as the Son of the Living God and Messiah of the world. The Lord Jesus spoke to St. Peter, saying that thus, he is Peter, whose name means ‘Rock’, and upon that same ‘Rock’ He would establish His Church that will prevail over all trials and tribulations that even the gates of hell cannot stand against it.

And Christ also entrusted the keys of the kingdom of heaven to St. Peter, which is now the symbol of Papal authority of the two crossed keys, representing what Christ had said, that the very authority to loosen or bind souls on earth and in heaven has been given to His Church through St. Peter, His Vicar, the first Pope and Bishop of Rome, as the leader of the entire of the whole Universal Church supported by the other Apostles who are the pillars of the Church.

We have to also note how Christ chose this man, St. Peter, who was then named Simon, son of John, who was the most unlikely of candidates to be chosen for such an important role. Simon was merely a poor, illiterate and brash fisherman from the lake of Galilee, whom the Lord called to follow Him. Simon followed, and Jesus gave him a new name, that is Peter, a symbolic grant of a new life and vocation, by which indeed later on he would be the ‘fishers of men’ together with his fellow Apostles and disciples.

Through the Holy Spirit, God guided St. Peter and turned him from the illiterate, uneducated and emotional man he was once before, cutting off the ears off a Temple servant in anger and denied knowing the Lord three times, into the great Apostle and Pope he was to become, as he gave his life to the service of God and ministered to the people throughout his many years of journeying to many parts of the world and resolving disputes between communities of the faithful.

Today therefore, we commemorate this great celebration and Feast of the Chair of St. Peter the Apostle as the reminder for each and everyone of us that our Church is indeed the one that Christ Himself has established in this world, as the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. And we therefore recall this very important Communion that we have as one Church and one Body of Christ, as we are united with St. Peter and his successors, our Popes and Vicars of Christ, who sit on the Cathedra or throne of St. Peter, as the Shepherd of shepherds of God’s people, entrusted with the care of the Universal Church.

Therefore today, let us all pray for our current Pope, His Holiness Pope Francis, the Vicar of Christ and Bishop of Rome. Let us pray for him that he will be able to carry on his ministry as the successor of the Prince of the Apostles, St. Peter, in guiding the entire Universal Church forward with the support of the bishops and priests, as well as all the lay members of the Church. Let us also support our Pope and the Church in our ever growing efforts in evangelisation and missionary works, in our numerous charitable outreach and works, and the many other efforts of the Church.

May the Lord continue to bless His Church and provide for us in everything, particularly through difficult and challenging moments. May He bless our Pope with courage and strength, with faith and perseverance as He once blessed St. Peter, the Prince and Chief of the Apostles. St. Peter, Holy Apostle, Pope and Vicar of Christ, pray for us all. Amen.

Saturday, 22 February 2020 : Feast of the Chair of St. Peter the Apostle (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Matthew 16 : 13-19

At that time, Jesus came to Caesarea Philippi. He asked His disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” They said, “For some of them You are John the Baptist, for others Elijah, or Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.”

Jesus asked them, “But you, who do you say I am?” Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” Jesus replied, “It is well for you, Simon Bar-Jona, for it is not flesh or blood that has revealed this to you, but My Father in heaven.”

“And now I say to you : You are Peter, and on this rock I will build My Church; and never will the powers of death overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven : whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you unbind on earth shall be unbound in heaven.”