(Usus Antiquior) The Ascension of our Lord (I Classis) – Thursday, 21 May 2020 : Offertory, Secret Prayer of the Priest, Communion and Post-Communion Prayer

Offertory

Psalm 46 : 6

Ascendit Deus in jubilatione, et Dominus in voce tubae, Alleluja.

 

English translation

God is ascended in jubilee, and the Lord with the sound of trumpet. Alleluia.

 

Secret Prayer of the Priest

Suscipe, Domine, munera, quae pro Filii Tui gloriosa Ascensione deferimus : et concede propitius; ut a praesentibus periculis liberemur, et ad vitam perveniamus aeternam. 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

Receive, o Lord, the offerings which we bring for the glorious Ascension of Your Son, and grant in Your mercy that we may be delivered from present dangers and may attain unto life everlasting. 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.

 

Preface of the Ascension

Vere dignum et justum est, aequum et salutare, nos tibi semper et ubique gratias agere : Domine, Sancte Pater omnipotens, aeterne Deus : per Christum, Dominum nostrum. Qui post resurrectionem suam omnibus discipulis suis manifestus apparuit et, ipsis cernentibus, est elevatus in caelum, ut nos divinitatis suae tribueret esse participes. Et ideo cum Angelis et Archangelis, cum Thronis et Dominationibus cumque omni militia caelestis exercitus hymnum gloriae Tuae canimus, sine fine dicentes :

 

English translation

It is truly meet and just, right and available to salvation, that we should always and in all places give thanks to You, o holy Lord, Father Almighty, eternal God, through Christ our Lord. He who after His resurrection very openly showed Himself to all His disciples, and in their sight was raised up to heaven, in order to give to us to be partakers of His Godhead. And therefore, with the angels and archangels, with the thrones and dominations, and with all the array of the heavenly host, we sing a hymn to Your glory and unceasingly repeat :

 

Communion

Psalm 67 : 33-34

Psallite Domino, qui ascendit super caelos caelorum ad Orientem, Alleluja.

 

English translation

Sing all of you to the Lord, who mounts above the heaven of heavens to the east. Alleluia.

 

Post-Communion Prayer

Praesta nobis, quaesumus, omnipotens et misericors Deus : ut, quae visibilibus mysteriis sumenda percepimus, invisibili consequamur effectu. 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 and merciful God, that what we have received in visible mysteries, we may also obtain in their invisible effect. 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) The Ascension of our Lord (I Classis) – Thursday, 21 May 2020 : Holy Gospel

Liturgical Colour : White

Sequentia Sancti Evangelii secundum Marcum – Continuation of the Holy Gospel according to St. Mark

Mark 16 : 14-20

In illo tempore : Recumbentibus undecim discipulis, apparuit illis Jesus : et exprobravit incredulitatem eorum et duritiam cordis : quia iis, qui viderant eum resurrexisse, non crediderunt. Et dixit eis : Euntes in mundum universum, praedicate Evangelium omni creaturae.

Qui crediderit et baptizatus fuerit, salvus erit : qui vero non crediderit, condemnabitur. Signa autem eos, qui crediderint, haec sequentur : In Nomine Meo daemonia ejicient : linguis loquantur novis : serpentes tollent : et si mortiferum quid biberint, non eis nocebit : super aegros manus imponent, et bene habebunt.

Et Dominus quidem Jesus, postquam locutus est eis, assumptus est in caelum, et sedet a dextris Dei. Illi autem profecti, praedicaverunt ubique, Domino cooperante et sermonem confirmante, sequentibus signis.

 

English translation

At that time, Jesus appeared to the Eleven as they were at table, and He upbraided them with their incredulity and hardness of heart, because they did not believe those who had seen Him after He had risen again. And He said to them, “Go all of you to the whole world and preach the Gospel to every creature.”

“He who believes and is baptised shall be saved, but he who does not believe shall be condemned. And these signs shall follow those who believe : In My Name they shall cast out devils, they shall speak with new tongues, they shall take up serpents, and if they shall drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them, they shall lay their hands upon the sick, and they shall recover.”

And the Lord Jesus, after He had spoken to them, was taken up into Heaven and sits on the right hand of God. But they go forth preaching everywhere, the Lord working withal, and confirming the word with signs that followed.

(Usus Antiquior) The Ascension of our Lord (I Classis) – Thursday, 21 May 2020 : Alleluia

Liturgical Colour : White

Psalm 46 : 6 and Psalm 67 : 18-19

Alleluja, Alleluja.

Response : Ascendit Deus in jubilatione, et Dominus in voce tubae.

Alleluja.

Response : Dominus in Sina in sancto, ascendens in altum, captivam duxit captivitatem. Alleluja.

 

English translation

Alleluia, Alleluia.

Response : God had ascended in jubilation, the Lord ascended with the voice of the trumpet.

Alleluia.

Response : The Lord is in Sinai, in His holy place, ascending on high. He had led captivity captive. Alleluia.

(Usus Antiquior) The Ascension of our Lord (I Classis) – Thursday, 21 May 2020 : Epistle

Liturgical Colour : White

Lectio Actuum Apostolorum – Lesson from the Acts of the Apostles

Acts 1 : 1-11

Primum quidem sermonem feci de omnibus, o Theophile, quae coepit Jesus facere et docere usque in diem, qua, praecipiens Apostolis per Spiritum Sanctum, quos elegit, assumptus est : quibus et praebuit seipsum vivum post passionem suam in multas argumentis, per dies quadraginta apparens eis et loquens de regno Dei.

Et convescens, praecepit eis, ab Jerosolymis ne discederent, sed exspectarent promissionem Patris, quam audistis (inquit) per os meum : quia Joannes quidem baptizavit aqua, vos autem baptizabimini Spiritu Sancto non post multos hos dies. Igitur qui convenerant, interrogabant eum, dicentes : Domine, si in tempore hoc restitues regnum Israel?

Dixit autem eis : Non est vestrum nosse tempora vel momenta, quae Pater posuit in sua potestate : sed accipietis virtutem supervenientis Spiritus Sancti in vos, et eritis mihi testes in Jerusalem et in omni Judaea et Samaria et usque ad ultimum terrae. Et cum haec dixisset, videntibus illis, elevatus est, et nubes suscepit eum ab oculis eorum.

Cumque intueretur in caelum euntem illum, ecce, duo viri astiterunt juxta illos in vestibus albis, qui et dixerunt : Viri Galilaei, quid statis aspicientes in caelum? Hic Jesus, qui assumptus est a vobis in caelum, sic veniet, quemadmodum vidistis eum euntem in caelum.

 

English translation

The former treatise I made, o Theophilus, of all things which Jesus began to do and to teach, until the day on which, giving commandments by the Holy Spirit to the Apostles whom He had chosen, He was taken up to whom He also showed Himself to be alive after His Passion by many proofs, for forty days appearing to them and speaking of the kingdom of God.

And eating together with them, He commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but should wait for the promise of the Father, which you have heard, (He said) by My mouth, for John indeed baptised with water, but you shall be baptised with the Holy Spirit not many days hence. They therefore who had come together asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore again the kingdom of Israel?”

But He said to them, “It is not for you to know the times or moments which the Father had put in His own power, but you shall receive the power of the Holy Spirit coming upon you, and you shall be witnesses unto Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the uttermost part of the earth.” And when He had said these things, while they looked on, He was raised up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight.

And while they were beholding Him going up to heaven, behold two men stood by them in white garments, who also said, “All you men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up to heaven? This Jesus, who is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come as you have seen Him going into heaven.”

(Usus Antiquior) The Ascension of our Lord (I Classis) – Thursday, 21 May 2020 : Introit and Collect

Liturgical Colour : White

Introit

Acts 1 : 11 and Psalm 46 : 2

Viri Galilaei, quid admiramini aspicientes in caelum? Alleluja : quemadmodum vidistis cum ascendentem in caelum, ita veniet. Alleluja, Alleluja, Alleluja.

Omnes gentes, plaudite manibus : jubilate Deo in voce exsultationis.

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

 

English translation

All you men of Galilee, why do you wonder, looking up to heaven? Alleluia. He shall come again just as you have seen Him going up into heaven. Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia.

O clap your hands, all you nations, shout unto God with the voice of joy.

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 hodierna die Unigenitum Tuum. Redemptorem nostrum, ad caelos ascendisse credimus : ipsi quoque mente in caelestibus habitemus. 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

Grant, we beseech You, o Almighty God, that, believing Your only-begotten, our Redeemer, to have ascended to heaven on this day, we, too, may spiritually dwell in heavenly places. 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.

Wednesday, 20 May 2020 : 6th Week of Easter, Memorial of St. Bernadine of Siena, Priest (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day as we approach the end of the season of Easter and as we are about to celebrate the Solemnity of the Ascension tomorrow, each and every one of us are called as Christians to be the witnesses of the truth of Christ, that is to proclaim Him in our lives and in our daily actions, that others may come to believe in the Lord and follow Him into their salvation much as we have received the same offer of salvation.

In our first reading today, we heard the account of how St. Paul went to the renowned forum in the great city of Athens, named Areopagus, where many people often came for philosophical debates and discussions between those who were interested. St. Paul went and joined in the debate as he came forth presenting the words of God and His calling, preaching to many of the pagan philosophers about the one and only true God, Jesus Christ, the Saviour of all the whole world.

St. Paul revealed the truth about God, the One Who loved all mankind, regardless of whoever and wherever they are, the One Who created the whole world and the entire universe, to those philosophers, many of whom had probably spent many years, decades and even perhaps their entire lives just to find the meaning and purpose of their lives. Some among the philosophers and pagans were intrigued by what St. Paul had revealed and spoken to them, and were open to listen more to him.

Unfortunately, many among the people ridiculed St. Paul and his revelations and words, laughed at him, ignored him and scorned him. This was to be expected given that the commonly held ideas and thoughts of that time were polytheism in worship, where people believed in many gods and deities, as well as many who worshipped elements and aspects of nature, including the Greeks and Romans, many of whom linked the elements of these paganism into their philosophical thinking.

Nonetheless, St. Paul tried and did his best to explain about God to these people in the place many considered to be the heart of Hellenistic paganism and philosophy, many of which aspect were against the Christian faith. He was patient yet succinct and detailed in his explanation and refute of the false pagan ways and practices. As a result, some of the pagans as mentioned did become intrigued by the revelations made by St. Paul, and it was likely that some among them did become Christians in the end.

St. Paul laboured and worked hard, revealing what he himself has received from the Spirit of Truth as mentioned in our Gospel passage today. The Holy Spirit has been sent from God to all the Apostles and disciples, who by laying of hands have passed the same Holy Spirit to all Christians, all throughout the ages and up to us all living today. We too have received the same Spirit, the same revelation and truth, as what we believe in our Christian faith and Creed that we believe in the One and only True God Who created all the world and the universe.

Now, brothers and sisters in Christ, to us have been entrusted the same mission and calling as St. Paul, and the missions and works of the Church are still far from being completed. On the contrary, there are still many areas where we can still contribute more in our own various capacities, to engage our fellow brothers and sisters especially those who have not yet known Christ in meaningful and respectful discourse that they too may come to believe in Him through us.

But if we want others to believe in God through us, then we ourselves must have genuine and strong faith in Him. Otherwise, how can we expect others to believe when we ourselves do not fully believe and practice our faith in our own daily lives and actions? We will be hypocrites and wicked if we do otherwise. That is why we should follow the good examples set by our predecessors. Today, we happen to celebrate the feast of St. Bernardine of Siena, a devout and holy priest, a dedicated servant of God whose examples can definitely inspire us.

St. Bernardine of Siena was renowned for his great piety and revolutionary style of preaching. Just like St. Paul, St. Bernardine of Siena spoke honestly and freely to the people. St. Bernardine of Siena reached out to the people and spoke to them about matters that directly influenced their lives. His efforts led to many people beginning to seek God more earnestly or trying to reevaluate their way of life. Many turned away from excesses of life and reorientate their lives towards God once again.

Of course, this did not mean that St. Bernardine did not encounter troubles during his journeys and works. There were also those that opposed and despised him, and in more than one occasions, people had tried to disturb and sabotage his sermons and works. That was the same rejection and difficulties that St. Paul and the other early Christian missionaries have experienced as well, and which we may experience ourselves during our own lives too.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, let us all realise that we have been called to be faithful witnesses of the Lord in all occasions. Let us all be inspired by the faith of our holy predecessors, St. Paul and many other Apostles, saints and martyrs, St. Bernardine of Siena whose memory we celebrate today. Let us strive to be ever more committed to our faith, and dedicate ourselves with ever greater passion with each and every passing moments, giving ourselves to the service of God and our fellow men. May God bless us all, now and always. Amen.