Sunday, 26 April 2020 : Third Sunday of Easter (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Luke 24 : 13-35

At that time, on the same day Jesus rose from the dead, two followers of Jesus were going to Emmaus, a village seven miles from Jerusalem, and they talked about what had happened. While they were talking and arguing about what had happened, Jesus came up and walked with them. But their eyes were not able to recognise Him.

He asked, “What is it you are talking about?” The two stood still, looking sad. Then the one named Cleophas answered, “Why, it seems You are the only traveller to Jerusalem who does not know what haw happened there these past few days.” And He asked, “What is it?”

They replied, “It is about Jesus of Nazareth. He was a Prophet, You know, mighty in word and deed before God and the people. But the chief priests and our rulers sentenced Him to death. They handed Him over to be crucified. We had hoped that He would redeem Israel. It is now the third day since all this took place.”

“It is also true that some women of our group have disturbed us. When they went to the tomb at dawn, they did not find His Body; and they came and told us that they had had a vision of Angels, who said that Jesus was alive. Some of our people went to the tomb and found everything just as the women had said, but they did not find a Body in the tomb.”

He said to them, “How dull you are, how slow of understanding! Is the message of the prophets too difficult for you to understand? Is it not written that the Christ should suffer all this, and then enter His glory?” Then starting with Moses, and going through the prophets, He explained to them everything in the Scriptures concerning Himself.

As they drew near the village they were heading for, Jesus made as if to go farther. But they prevailed upon Him, “Stay with us, for night comes quickly. The day is now almost over.” So He went in to stay with them. When they were at table, He took the bread, said a blessing, broke it, and gave each a piece.

Then their eyes were opened, and they recognised Him; but He vanished out of their sight. And they said to one another, “Were not our hearts filled with ardent yearning when He was talking to us on the road and explaining the Scriptures?” They immediately set out and returned to Jerusalem.

There they found the Eleven and their companions gathered together. They were greeted by these words : “Yes, it is true, the Lord is risen! He has appeared to Simon!” Then the two told what had happened on the road to Emmaus, and how Jesus had made Himself known, when He broke bread with them.

Sunday, 26 April 2020 : Third Sunday of Easter (Second Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

1 Peter 1 : 17-21

You call upon a Father Who makes no distinction between persons but judges according to each one’s deeds; take seriously, then, these years which you spend in a strange land. Remember that you were freed from the useless way of life of your ancestors, not with gold and silver but with the Precious Blood of the Lamb without spot or blemish.

God, Who has known Christ before the world began, revealed Him to you in the last days. Through Him, you have faith in God Who raised Him from the dead and glorified Him in order that you might put all your faith and hope in God.

Sunday, 26 April 2020 : Third Sunday of Easter (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : White

Psalm 15 : 1-2a and 5, 7-8, 9-10, 11

Keep me safe, o God, for in You I take refuge. I say to the Lord, “O Lord, my inheritance and my cup, my chosen portion – hold secure my lot.”

I bless the Lord Who counsels me; even at night my inmost self instructs me. I keep the Lord always before me; for with Him at my right hand, I will never be shaken.

My heart, therefore, exults, my soul rejoices; my body too will rest assured. For You will not abandon my soul to the grave, nor will You suffer Your Holy One to see decay in the land of the dead.

You will show me the path of life, in Your presence the fullness of joy, at Your right hand happiness forever.

Sunday, 26 April 2020 : Third Sunday of Easter (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Acts 2 : 14, 22-33

Then Peter stood up with the Eleven and, with a loud voice, addressed them, “Fellow Jews and all foreigners now staying in Jerusalem, listen to what I have to say. Fellow Israelites, listen to what I am going to tell you about Jesus of Nazareth. God accredited Him and through Him did powerful deeds and wonders and signs in your midst, as you well know.”

“You delivered Him to sinners to be crucified and killed, and in this way the purpose of God from all times was fulfilled. But God raised Him to life and released Him from the pain of death, because it was impossible for Him to be held in the power of death. David spoke of Him when He said : I saw the Lord before me at all times; He is by my side, that I may not be shaken.”

“Therefore my heart was glad and my tongue rejoiced; my body too will live in hope. Because You will not forsake me in the abode of the dead, nor allow Your Holy One to experience corruption. You have made known to me the paths of life, and Your presence will fill me with joy.”

“Friends, I do not need to prove that the patriarch David died and was buried; his tomb is with us to this day. But he knew that God had sworn to him that One of his descendants would sit upon his throne and, as he was a prophet, he foresaw and spoke of the resurrection of the Messiah. So he said that He would not be left in the region of the dead, nor would His Body experience corruption.

This Messiah is Jesus and we are all witnesses that God raised Him to life. He has been exalted at God’s right side and the Father has entrusted the Holy Spirit to Him; this Spirit He has just poured upon us as you now see and hear.

(Usus Antiquior) Second Sunday after Easter (II Classis) – Sunday, 26 April 2020 : Offertory, Secret Prayer of the Priest, Communion and Post-Communion Prayer

Liturgical Colour : White

Offertory

Psalm 62 : 2, 5

Deus, Deus meus, ad Te de luce vigilo : et in Nomine Tuo levabo manus meas, Alleluja.

 

English translation

O God, my God, to You do I watch at break of day, and in Your Name I will lift up my hands, Alleluia.

 

Secret Prayer of the Priest

Benedictionem nobis, Domine, conferat salutarem sacra semper oblatio : ut, quod agit mysterio, virtute perficiat. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium Tuum, qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

 

English translation

Let the sacred offering, o Lord, ever confer salutary benediction upon us, perfecting in power what it has done in mystery. 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

John 10 : 14

Ego sum Pastor Bonus, Alleluja : et cognosco oves meas, et cognoscunt me meae, Alleluja, Alleluja.

 

English translation

I am the Good Shepherd, Alleluia. And I know My sheep and My sheep know Me. Alleluia, Alleluia.

 

Post-Communion Prayer

Praesta nobis, quaesumus, omnipotens Deus : ut, vivificationis Tuae gratiam consequentes, in Tuo semper munere gloriemur. 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 Almighty God, that quickened by Your grace, we may ever glory in Your gifts. 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) Second Sunday after Easter (II Classis) – Sunday, 26 April 2020 : Holy Gospel

Liturgical Colour : White

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

John 10 : 11-16

In illo tempore : Dixit Jesus pharisaeis : Ego sum Pastor Bonus. Bonus pastor animam suam dat pro ovibus suis. Mercennarius autem et qui non est pastor, cujus non sunt oves propriae, videt lupum venientem, et dimittit oves et fugit : et lupus rapit et dispergit oves : mercennarius autem fugit, quia mercennarius est et non pertinet ad eum de ovibus.

Ego sum Pastor Bonus : et cognosco meas et cognoscunt me meae. Sicut novit me Pater, et ego agnosco Patrem, et animam meam pono pro ovibus meis. Et alias oves habeo, quae non sunt ex hoc ovili : et illas oportet me adducere, et vocem meam audient, et fiet unum ovile et unus pastor.

 

English translation

At that time, Jesus said to the Pharisees, “I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd gives His life for His sheep, but the hireling, and he who is not the shepherd, who did not own the sheep will not. And when they see the wolf coming, they leave the sheep and flee, and the wolf catches and scatters the sheep. And the hireling flees, because he is a hireling, and had no care for the sheep.”

“I am the Good Shepherd, and I know My sheep, and My sheep know Me. As the Father knows Me, and I know the Father, and I lay down My life for My sheep. And other sheep I have, that are not of this fold, they too I must bring, and they shall hear My voice and there shall be one fold and one shepherd.”

(Usus Antiquior) Second Sunday after Easter (II Classis) – Sunday, 26 April 2020 : Alleluia

Liturgical Colour : White

Luke 24 : 35 and John 10 : 14

Alleluja, Alleluja.

Response : Cognoverunt discipuli Dominum Jesum on fractione panis.

Alleluja.

Response : Ego sum pastor bonus : et cognosco oves meas, et cognoscunt me meae. Alleluja.

 

English translation

Alleluia, Alleluia.

Response : The disciples knew the Lord Jesus in the breaking of the bread.

Alleluia.

Response : I am the Good Shepherd, and I know My sheep, and My sheep know Me. Alleluia.

(Usus Antiquior) Second Sunday after Easter (II Classis) – Sunday, 26 April 2020 : Epistle

Liturgical Colour : White

Lectio Epistolae Beati Petri Apostoli – Lesson from the Epistle of Blessed Peter the Apostle

1 Peter 2 : 21-25

Carissimi : Christus passus est pro nobis, vobis relinquens exemplum, ut sequamini vestigia ejus. Qui peccatum non fecit, nec inventus est dolus in ore ejus : qui cum malediceretur, non maledicebat : cum pateretur, non comminabatur : tradebat autem judicanti se injuste : qui peccata nostra ipse pertulit in corpore suo super lignum: ut, peccatis mortui, justitiae vivamus : cujus livore sanati estis.

Eratis enim sicut oves errantes, sed conversi estis nunc ad pastorem et episcopum animarum vestrarum.

 

English translation

Dearly beloved, Christ suffered for us, leaving you an example that you should follow His steps, He who had not sinned, and neither was guile found in His mouth. He who, when He was reviled, did not revile. When He suffered, He did not threaten, but delivered Himself to those who judged Him unjustly. He who by Himself bore our sins in His body upon the tree, that we, who were dead to sins, should live to justice, by whose stripes we have been healed.

For you were as sheep that went astray, but you are now converted to the shepherd and bishop of your souls.

(Usus Antiquior) Second Sunday after Easter (II Classis) – Sunday, 26 April 2020 : Introit and Collect

Liturgical Colour : White

Introit

Psalm 32 : 5-6 and 1

Misericordia Domini plena est terra, Alleluja : verbo Domini caeli firmati sunt, Alleluja, Alleluja.

Exsultate, justi, in Domino : rectos decet collaudatio.

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

 

English translation

The earth is full of the mercy of the Lord, Alleluia. By the word of the Lord the heavens were established, Alleluia, Alleluia.

Rejoice in the Lord, all you who are just, praise becoming those who are upright.

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

Deus, qui in Filii Tui humilitate jacentem mundum erexisti : fidelibus Tuis perpetuam concede laetitiam; ut, quos perpetuae mortis eripuisti casibus, gaudiis facias perfrui sempiternis. Per eumdem Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium Tuum, qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

 

English translation

O God, who by the humility of Your Son had lifted up a fallen world, grant that to those whom You have delivered from the misfortunes of eternal death, You may ensure them everlasting happiness. Through the same 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 April 2020 : Feast of St. Mark, Evangelist (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Red

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we celebrate the great feast day of the Evangelist, St. Mark, one of the Four Holy Evangelists, the writers of the Four Holy Gospels. St. Mark was a great disciple of Christ, and while he was not one of the Twelve Apostles, he was accorded the same honour and respect as the Apostles and he was also the founder of the very important See of Alexandria. Thus St. Mark was considered retroactively as the very first Patriarch of Alexandria, one of the five greatest centres of early Christendom.

And on this day we recall the great deeds of St. Mark in his efforts as one of the followers of Christ, not just in writing the Gospel according to St. Mark, but also in his evangelising and preaching ministry among many of the people, in Alexandria where he would establish the Church there, in Egypt as a whole and in other parts of the world such as in other parts of North Africa and also the Mediterranean, as he also accompanied St. Peter during some of his travels.

This relationship can be seen as part of our first reading today from the Epistle of St. Peter in which St. Peter referred to St. Mark as his ‘son’, alluding to the close Christian relationship that they had between them, and how St. Mark must have been an important companion to at least some of St. Peter’s travels and works. And in that same passage from St. Peter’s Epistle, the Apostle also reminded us all the faithful that we must be filled with virtues and humility, to serve God with all of our strength and to be vigilant against the temptations of evil.

In all of today’s readings therefore, including that of the Gospel in which the Lord Jesus after His resurrection described what His disciples would be sent out to do, and how the Lord would protect them from harm, all of us are reminded now therefore of this calling which God had called us into, the mission that He has shared with us and entrusted to us, which is the mission to save the whole world, to bring God’s salvation to them and to call them to embrace the fullness of His grace.

If God has called St. Mark and the Apostles, the many disciples He had called and chosen, then we must also realise that God has also called all of us, His faithful ones, to be His followers and to do what He desires of us to do in accordance with His will. And this means that we have been entrusted with the same mission which the Lord had given and entrusted to His Apostles and disciples, to go forth to the world and spread His Good News of salvation, and bring all souls to Him.

Are we willing and able to take up this mission that the Lord has entrusted to us? God wants us to follow Him and to contribute to the missions of the Church in whatever way we can. And the Lord had given us many gifts and abilities, talents and opportunities to follow Him and give all these for the sake of His greater glory. But many of us have not been using them properly as we should have, and many of us even abused and misused them for our own selfish purposes.

Today, all of us are called to discern carefully with our lives and our actions. We are called to follow in the footsteps of St. Mark the Evangelist and the other Apostles and disciples of the Lord, in their courageous and devout pursuit of service to God and His people. God has called all of us through our baptism, which we all share, to walk down the path of faith and to be His witnesses and workers, to be faithful to Him and to be inspirations for one another especially during these difficult times.

During these dark and challenging times, we are challenged to be bearers of hope and to be beacons of God’s wonderful light amidst the darkness that have been covering this world. We are now living through particularly difficult and dark times, and we see all around us all forms of sufferings and pains, conflicts and evil. Many among us have fallen into despair and gave in to our fears and uncertainties, our desires and selfishness, resulting in us acting and behaving in ways that often cause hurt and pain upon others.

Are we able to challenge ourselves to overcome these temptations of our desires and pride? Are we able to focus our attention instead on God and on His love and providence, rather than being obsessed and overcome by the pride and ego within us? Let us all spend some time to think about these matters, and let us all be inspired by the faith and the dedication of our holy predecessors that we, too, may follow in their footsteps and do our best to serve the Lord at all times. May God bless us all and our many good endeavours for our faith. May St. Mark intercede for us sinners too before our Lord and Master. Amen.