Tuesday, 29 September 2020 : Feast of the Holy Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

John 1 : 47-51

At that time, when Jesus saw Nathanael coming, He said to him, “Here comes an Israelite, a true one; there is nothing false in him.” Nathanael asked Him, “How do You know me?”

And Jesus said to him, “Before Philip called you, you were under the fig tree, and I saw you.” Nathanael answered, “Master, You are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!” But Jesus replied, “You believe because I said, ‘I saw you under the fig tree.’ But you will see greater things than that.”

“Truly, I say to you, you will see the heavens opened, and the Angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.”

Tuesday, 29 September 2020 : Feast of the Holy Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : White

Psalm 137 : 1-2a, 2bcd-3, 4-5

I thank You, o YHVH, with all my heart, for You have heard the word of my lips. I sing Your praise in the presence of the gods. I bow down toward Your holy Temple and give thanks to Your Name.

For Your love and faithfulness, for Your word, which exceeds everything. You answered me when I called; You restored my soul and made me strong.

O YHVH, all kings on earth will give You praise, when they have heard Your words. They will celebrate the ways of YHVH, “Great is the glory of YHVH!”

Tuesday, 29 September 2020 : Feast of the Holy Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Daniel 7 : 9-10, 13-14

I looked and saw the following : Some thrones were set in place and One of Great Age took His seat. His robe was white, as snow, His hair, white as washed wool. His throne was flames of fire with wheels of blazing fire. A river of fire sprang forth and flowed before Him. Thousands upon thousands served Him and a countless multitude stood before Him.

Those in the tribunal took their seats and opened the book. I continued watching the nocturnal vision : One like a Son of Man came on the clouds of heaven. He faced the One of Great Age and was brought into His presence. Dominion, honour and kingship were given Him, and all the peoples and nations of every language served Him. His dominion is eternal and shall never pass away; His kingdom will never be destroyed.

Alternative reading

Revelations 12 : 7-12a

War broke out in heaven, with Michael and his Angels battling with the dragon. The dragon fought back with his angels, but they were defeated, and lost their place in heaven. The great dragon, the ancient serpent, known as the devil, or Satan, seducer of the whole world, was thrown out. He was hurled down to earth, together with his angels.

Then, I heard a loud voice from heaven : Now has salvation come, with the power and the kingdom of our God, and the rule of His Anointed. For our brothers’ accuser has been cast out, who accused them night and day, before God. They conquered him, by the Blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony, for they gave up their lives, going to death.

Rejoice, therefore, o you heavens, and you who dwell in them.

(Usus Antiquior) Dedication of St. Michael the Archangel (I Classis) – Tuesday, 29 September 2020 : Offertory, Secret Prayer of the Priest, Communion and Post-Communion Prayer

Liturgical Colour : White

Offertory

Apocalypse 8 : 3, 4

Stetit Angelus juxta aram templi, habens thuribulum aureum in manu sua, et data sunt ei incensa multa : et ascendit fumus aromatum in conspectu Dei, Alleluja.

 

English translation

An angel stood near the altar of the Temple, having a golden censer in his hand, and there was given to him much incense, and the smoke of the perfumes ascended before God, Alleluia.

 

Secret Prayer of the Priest

Hostias Tibi, Domine, laudis offerimus, suppliciter deprecantes : ut easdem, angelico pro nobis interveniente suffragio, et placatus accipias, et ad salutem nostram provenire concedas. 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 offer You sacrifices of praise, o Lord, humbly praying that You may be pleased to receive them, through the angelic intercession in our behalf, and grant that they may avail for our 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.

 

Communion

Daniel 3 : 58

Benedicite, omnes Angeli Domini, Dominum : hymnum dicite et superexaltate eum in saecula.

 

English translation

All you angels of the Lord, bless the Lord. Sing a hymn, and exalt Him above all forever, Alleluia.

 

Post-Communion Prayer

Beati Archangeli Tui Michaelis intercessione suffulti : supplices Te, Domine, deprecamur; ut, quod ore prosequimur, contingamus et mente. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium Tuum, qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

 

English translation

Relying upon the intercession of Blessed Michael, Your Archangel, o Lord, we Your suppliants pray that what we perform with our lips we may attain with our hearts. 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) Dedication of St. Michael the Archangel (I Classis) – Tuesday, 29 September 2020 : Holy Gospel

Liturgical Colour : White

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

Matthew 18 : 1-10

In illo tempore : Accesserunt discipuli ad Jesum, dicentes : Quis, putas, major est in regno caelorum? Et advocans Jesus parvulum, statuit eum in medio eorum et dixit : Amen, dico vobis, nisi conversi fueritis et efficiamini sicut parvuli, non intrabitis in regnum caelorum.

Quicumque ergo humiliaverit se sicut parvulus iste, hic est major in regno caelorum. Et qui susceperit unum parvulum talem in Nomine Meo, Me suscipit. Qui autem scandalizaverit unum de pusillis istis, qui in Me credunt, expedit ei, ut suspendatur mola asinaria in collo ejus, et demergatur in profundum maris.

Vae mundo a scandalis! Necesse est enim, ut veniant scandala : verumtamen vae homini illi, per quem scandalum venit! Si autem manus tua vel pes tuus scandalizat te, abscide eum et projice abs te : bonum tibi est ad vitam ingredi debilem vel claudum, quam duas manus vel duos pedes habentem mitti in ignem aeternum.

Et si oculos tuos scandalizat te, erue eum et projice abs te : bonum tibi est cum uno oculo in vitam intrare, quam duos oculos habentem mitti in gehennam ignis. Videte, ne contemnatis unum ex his pusillis : dico enim vobis, quia Angeli eorum in caelis semper vident faciem Patris Mei, qui in caelis est.

 

English translation

At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who do You think, is the greater in the kingdom of Heaven?” And Jesus calling unto Him a little child, set him in the midst of them, and said, “Amen, I say to you, unless you are converted, and become as little children, you shall not enter into the kingdom of Heaven.”

“Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, he is the greater in the kingdom of Heaven, and he who shall receive one such little child in My Name, receives Me, but he who shall scandalise one of these little ones who believed in Me, it were better for him that a millstone should be hanged about his neck, and that he should be drowned in the depth of the sea.”

“Woe to the world because of scandals, for it must need be that scandals come, but nevertheless woe to that man by whom the scandals came. And if your hand, or your foot, scandalise you, cut it off, and cast it from you. It is better for you to go into life maimed or lame, than having two hands or two feet, and to be cast into everlasting fire.”

“And if your eye scandalise you, pluck it out, and cast it from you. It us better for you having one eye to enter into life, than having two eyes and to be cast into hell fire. See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you, that their angels in Heaven always see the face of My Father, Who is in Heaven.”

(Usus Antiquior) Dedication of St. Michael the Archangel (I Classis) – Tuesday, 29 September 2020 : Gradual and Alleluia

Liturgical Colour : White

Psalm 102 : 20, 1 and Tradition of the Faith

Benedicite Dominum, omnes Angeli Ejus : potentes virtute, qui facitis verbum Ejus.

Response : Benedic, anima mea, Dominum, et omnia interiora mea, Nomen Sanctum Ejus.

Alleluja, Alleluja.

Response : Sancte Michael Archangele, defende nos in praelio : ut non pereamus in tremendo judicio. Alleluja.

 

English translation

Bless the Lord, all you His angels, you who are mighty in strength, who do His will.

Response : O my soul, may you bless the Lord, and all that is within me praise His Holy Name.

Alleluia, Alleluia.

Response : Holy Archangel Michael, defend us in battle, that we do not perish in the dreadful judgment. Alleluia.

(Usus Antiquior) Dedication of St. Michael the Archangel (I Classis) – Tuesday, 29 September 2020 : Epistle

Liturgical Colour : White

Lectio libri Apocalypsis Beati Joannis Apostoli – Lesson from the Book of the Apocalypse of Blessed John the Apostle

Apocalypse 1 : 1-5

In diebus illis : Significavit Deus, quae oportet fieri cito, mittens per Angelum Suum servo Suo Joanni, qui testimonium perhibuit verbo Dei, et testimonium Jesu Christi, quaecumque vidit. Beatus, qui legit et audit verba prophetiae hujus : et servat ea, quae in ea scripta sunt : tempus enim prope est.

Joannes septem ecclesiis, quae sunt in Asia. Gratia vobis et pax ab eo, qui est et qui erat et qui venturus est : et a septem spiritibus, qui in conspectu throni Ejus sunt : et a Jesu Christo, qui est testis fidelis, primogenitus mortuorum et princeps regum terrae, qui dilexit nos et lavit nos a peccatis nostris in sanguine Suo.

 

English translation

In those days, God signified the things which must shortly come to pass, sending by His angel to His servant John, who had given testimony to the word of God, and the testimony of Jesus Christ, what things whatsoever he had seen. Blessed is he who read and heard the words of this prophecy, and kept those things which are written in it, for the time is at hand.

John to the seven churches which are in Asia, “Grace be unto you and peace from Him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits which are before His throne, and from Jesus Christ, Who is the faithful witness, the first Begotten of the dead, and the Prince of the kings of the earth Who had loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood.

(Usus Antiquior) Dedication of St. Michael the Archangel (I Classis) – Tuesday, 29 September 2020 : Introit and Collect

Liturgical Colour : White

Introit

Psalm 102 : 20, 1

Benedicite Dominum, omnes Angeli Ejus : potentes virtute, qui facitis verbum Ejus, ad audiendam vocem sermonum Ejus.

Benedic, anima mea, Domino : et omnia, quae intra me sunt, Nomini Sancto Ejus.

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

 

English translation

Bless the Lord, all you His angels, you who are mighty in strength, and execute His word, hearkening to the voice of His orders.

Bless the Lord, o my soul, and let all that is within me bless His Holy Name.

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, miro ordine, Angelorum ministeria hominumque dispensas : concede propitius; ut, a quibus Tibi ministrantibus in caelo semper assistitur, ab his in terra vita nostra muniatur. Per 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 had in wonderful order disposed the ministries of angels and men, mercifully grant that our lives be fortified by those who continually stand in Your presence and minister before You in heaven. 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.

Monday, 28 September 2020 : 26th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Wenceslaus, Martyr and St. Lawrence Ruiz and Companions, Martyrs (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green or Red (Martyrs)

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we listen to the beginning of the story of Job, as we heard how that servant of God suffered under the attacks of Satan, who wanted to tempt him to abandon God out of despair and suffering. Satan said to God that Job’s faith was only strong because he was so blessed and protected by God, and should he lose them all, then he would surely abandon God and curse Him.

That was why Satan struck at Job and took away everything he had, his large family and his immense possessions, only sparing his life because God expressly forbid him from touching his life. And certainly, to Satan’s amazement, Job remained faithful, even when Satan stepped up his attacks on him and caused terrible and painful boils to appear throughout his entire body.

Job remained firm in his faith, and even though he suffered and even despaired at times, as the whole Book of Job essentially detailed out this struggle he had, especially when his close associates came to him and instead of consoling him, argued that Job must have sinned and disobeyed God to suffer such a terrible fate. Yet, even with all of these, Job remained faithful, and God, after revealing the truth about it all, blessed Job twice and more as much as he had been blessed before all the misfortune.

There were those who argued that the character Job was not really real, but rather an allegory and representation of the suffering servant of God, and how that servant persevered even through the trials and difficulties that came their way. But regardless whether Job was real or not, the fact remains that it was a reminder for each and every one of us to keep our faith in God and that despite all sufferings endured in faith, God does not forget us and will provide for us in the end, just as He did with Job.

In our Gospel today then we heard about the Lord and His disciples as they encountered some children and the Lord welcomed them warmly, and saying that unless they welcomed those children the way that He had called them and welcomed them, they would have no part in Him. And as His followers they also ought to be humble and make themselves small and insignificant, not to boast of their own might and power.

And the Lord also told His disciples not to stop another person who used His Name to do the same work as they had done, casting out demons and performing good works of healing. Through this, God wants us to know that all of us do not work for our own personal glory, or the glory of our own group or particular communities to the exclusion of others. All that is done is for the greater glory of God.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, today therefore we have been reminded to be faithful disciples and followers of Our Lord, dedicating our time and efforts to walk in His path and to proclaim His truth and Good News in our respective communities, to do this humbly and dedicate ourselves for the glory of God, at all times. This is what we have been called to do as Christians with our lives.

And today, we should look upon the examples of St. Wenceslaus, as well as St. Lawrence Ruiz and his Companions, the Holy Martyrs of Japan. St. Wenceslaus was the Duke of Bohemia who reigned wisely and was beloved by many of his subjects, and who was instrumental in strengthening the Christian faith which at that time was still contending against the pagan beliefs of the people in Bohemia. St. Wenceslaus faced opposition from some among the nobles who supported the pagan cause.

St. Wenceslaus helped to build the strong foundation in a country that had been converted to the Christian faith just not long before, and he established not just good governance but also a strong and enduring Christian hierarchy and establishment. For all these, some among the nobles resented him, his reforms and efforts, and in complicit with St. Wenceslaus’ brother, they killed St. Wenceslaus who therefore died a martyr to his faith.

Meanwhile, St. Lawrence Ruiz, also known as St. Lorenzo Ruiz, was a Filipino young man who had a good early life, was married and worked for the Spanish administration, before one day he was falsely accused of the murder of a Spaniard, something that is considered a capital offence back then, and which caused St. Lorenzo Ruiz to seek asylum with several priests who were on their way to Japan.

Unfortunately, at that time, Japan has already closed its borders to Christian missionaries, and the Tokugawa Shogunate then had arrested many Christian missionaries and converts, forcing many of them to choose between abandoning their faith and live, or to remain faithful and suffer a most painful death. That same fate was encountered by St. Lorenzo Ruiz and the others who were to suffer martyrdom with him. Together they were brought to Nishizaka Hill and as with St. Paul Miki and his companions forty years earlier, they were tortured, and died of martyrdom.

St. Lorenzo Ruiz and many of his companions died faithfully defending their faith, and although they might have suffered so much, but through their faith, they certainly receive eternal glory from God, the crown of everlasting life they had earned through martyrdom. The same is the also the case for St. Wenceslaus, and is reminiscent of what Job had experienced, after all of his sufferings.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, therefore we are all reminded that we need to realise how being Christians may bring us difficulties, trials and challenges, and along this journey, we may even be tempted again and again to give up and to abandon this faith. But we must not lose faith, brothers and sisters! We must remain firm in faith and look forward beyond all the obstacles, and realise that in the end of it all, there will be great things awaiting us, true happiness and glory that is in God alone.

May the Lord help us and guide us in this journey of faith, just as He has strengthened Job, St. Wenceslaus, St. Lorenzo Ruiz and his companions, and many other saints and martyrs, all those who dedicated their lives to God, so that we may also be strong in our faith and dedication. May He bless our good endeavours and works, all for His greater glory, in each and every moments of our lives. Amen.