Sunday, 8 November 2020 : Thirty-Second Sunday of Ordinary Time (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Matthew 25 : 1-13

At that time, Jesus said to His disciples, “This story throws light on what will happen in the kingdom of heaven : Ten bridesmaids went out with their lamps to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were sensible. The careless bridesmaids took their lamps as they were, and did not take extra oil. But those who were sensible, took flasks of oil with their lamps. As the bridegroom delayed, they all grew drowsy and fell asleep.”

“But at midnight, a cry rang out, ‘The bridegroom is here, come on and meet him!’ All the maidens woke up at once, and trimmed their lamps. Then the foolish ones said to the sensible ones, ‘Give us some oil, for our lamps are going out.’ The sensible ones answered, ‘There may not be enough for us and for you. You had better go to those who sell, and buy some for yourselves.'”

“When the bridegroom came, the foolish maidens were out buying oil, but those who were ready went with him into the wedding feast, and the doors were shut. Later the other bridesmaids arrived and called out, ‘Lord, Lord, open to us!’ But he answered, ‘Truly I do not know you.'”

“So stay awake, for you do not know the day nor the hour.”

Sunday, 8 November 2020 : Thirty-Second Sunday of Ordinary Time (Second Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

1 Thessalonians 4 : 13-18

Brothers and sisters, we want you not to be mistaken about those who are already asleep, lest you grieve as do those who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose; it will be the same for those who have died in Jesus. God will bring them together, with Jesus, and for His sake.

By the same word of the Lord, we assert this : those of us who are to be alive at the Lord’s coming, will not go ahead of those who are already asleep. When the command by the Archangel’s voice is given, the Lord, Himself, will come down from heaven, while the divine trumpet call is sounding. Then, those who have died in the Lord, will rise first; as for us who are still alive, we will be brought along with them, in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the celestial world. And we will be with the Lord forever.

So then, comfort one another with these words.

Alternative reading (shorter version)

1 Thessalonians 4 : 13-14

Brothers and sisters, we want you not to be mistaken about those who are already asleep, lest you grieve as do those who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose; it will be the same for those who have died in Jesus. God will bring them together, with Jesus, and for His sake.

Sunday, 8 November 2020 : Thirty-Second Sunday of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 62 : 2abc, 2d-4, 5-6, 7-8

O God, You are my God, it is You I seek; for You, my body longs and my soul thirsts.

As a dry and weary land without water. Thus have I gazed upon You in the Sanctuary, to see Your power and Your glory. Your love is better than life, my lips will glorify You.

I will praise You as long as I live, lift up my hands and call on Your Name. As with the richest food, my soul will feast; my mouth will praise You with joyful lips.

When I remember You on my bed, I think of You all through the night, for You have been my help; I sing in the shadow of Your wings.

Sunday, 8 November 2020 : Thirty-Second Sunday of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Wisdom 6 : 12-16

Wisdom is luminous and never tarnished; she willingly lets herself be seen by those who love her, and known by those who look for her. She hastens to meet those who long for her. Seek her in the morning and you will not be disappointed; you will find her sitting at your door.

To meditate on Wisdom is understanding fully grown; whoever is on the watch for her will be free of anxiety. She goes in search of those who are worthy of her, graciously meets them on the way and is present in their every thought.

(Usus Antiquior) Twenty-Third Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 8 November 2020 : Offertory, Secret Prayer of the Priest, Communion and Post-Communion Prayer

Offertory

Psalm 129 : 1-2

De profundis clamavi ad Te, Domine : Domine, exaudi orationem meam : de profundis clamavi ad Te, Domine.

English translation

From the depths I have cried out to You, o Lord. Lord, hear my prayer, from the depths I have cried out to You, o Lord.

Secret Prayer of the Priest

Pro nostrae servitutis augmento sacrificum Tibi, Domine, laudis offerimus ut, quod immeritis contulisti, propitius exsequaris. Per Dominum…

English translation

We offer You, o Lord, the sacrifice of praise for the increase of our service, that You may graciously complete that which, for no merit of ours, You had granted unto us. Through our Lord…

Communion

Mark 11 : 24

Amen, dico vobis, quidquid orantes petitis, credite, quia accipietis, et fiet vobis.

English translation

Amen I say to you, whatsoever, you ask when you pray, believe that you shall receive, and it shall be done to you.

Post-Communion Prayer

Quaesumus, omnipotens Deus : ut, quos divina tribuis participatione gaudere, humanis non sinas subjacere periculis. Per Dominum…

English translation

We pray to You, o Almighty God, that You will not suffer to be overcome by human dangers those to whom You granted participation in things that are divine. Through our Lord…

(Usus Antiquior) Twenty-Third Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 8 November 2020 : Holy Gospel

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

Matthew 9 : 18-26

In illo tempore : Loquente Jesu ad turbas, ecce, princeps unus accessit et adorabat eum, dicens : Domine, filia mea modo defuncta est : sed veni, impone manum tuam super eam, et vivet.

Et surgens Jesus sequebatur eum et discipuli ejus. Et ecce mulier, quae sanguinis fluxum patiebatur duodecim annis, accessit retro et tetigit fimbriam vestimenti ejus. Dicebat enim intra se : Si tetigero tantum vestimentum ejus, salva ero.

At Jesus conversus et videns eam, dixit : Confide, filia fides tua te salvam fecit. Et salva facta est mulier et illa hora. Et cum venisset Jesus in domum principis, et vidisset tibicines et turbam tumultuantem, dicebat : Recedite : non est enim mortua puella, sed dormit.

Et deridebant eum. Et cum ejecta esset turba, intravit et tenuit manum ejus. Et surrexit puella. Et exiit fama haec in universam terram illam.

English translation

At that time, as Jesus was speaking to the multitudes, behold a certain ruler came up, and adored Him, saying, “Lord, my daughter is even now dead, but if You come to lay Your hands upon her, she shall live.”

And Jesus, rising up, followed him with His disciples. And behold a woman, who was troubled with an issue of blood for twelve years, came behind Him, and touched the hem of His garment. For she said within herself, “If I shall only touch His garment, I shall be healed.”

But Jesus turning and seeing her, said, “Be of good heart, daughter, your faith had made you whole.” And the woman was made whole from that hour. And when Jesus came into the house of the ruler, and saw the minstrels making a tumult, He said, “Give place, for the girl is not dead, but sleeps.”

And they laughed Him to scorn. And when the multitude was put forth, He went in, and took her by the hand. And the maid arose. And the fame thereafter went abroad into all that country.

(Usus Antiquior) Twenty-Third Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 8 November 2020 : Gradual and Alleluia

Psalm 43 : 8-9 and Psalm 129 : 1-2

Liberasti nos, Domine, ex affligentibus nos : et eos, qui nos oderunt, confudisti.

Response : In Deo laudabimur tota die, et in Nomine Tuo confitebimur in saecula.

Alleluja, Alleluja.

Response : De profundis clamavi ad Te, Domine : Domine, exaudi orationem meam. Alleluja.

English translation

You had delivered us, o Lord, from those who afflict us, and had put them to shame, those who hate us.

Response : In God we will glory all the day, and in Your Name we will give praise forever.

Alleluia, Alleluia.

Response : From the depths I have cried to You, o Lord. O Lord, hear my prayer. Alleluia.

(Usus Antiquior) Twenty-Third Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 8 November 2020 : Epistle

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

Philippians 3 : 17-21 and Philippians 4 : 1-3

Fratres : Imitatores mei estote, et observate eos, qui ita ambulant, sicut habetis formam nostram. Multi enim ambulant, quos saepe dicebam vobis (nunc autem et flens dico) inimicos Crucis Christi : quorum finis interitus : quorum Deus venter est : et gloria in confusione ipsorum, qui terrena sapiunt.

Nostra autem conversatio in caelis est : unde etiam Salvatorem exspectamus, Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum, qui reformabit corpus humilitatis nostrae, configuratum corpori claritatis suae, secundum operationem, qua etiam possit subjicere sibi omnia.

Itaque, fratres mei carissimi et desideratissimi, gaudium meum et corona mea : sic state in Domino, carissimi. Evodiam rogo et Syntychen deprecor idipsum sapere in Domino. Etiam rogo et te, germane compar, adjuva illas, quae mecum laboraverunt in Evangelio cum Clemente et ceteris adjutoribus meis, quorum nomina sunt in libro vitae.

English translation

Brethren, may all of you be my followers, and observe those who walk so as you have our model. For many walk, of whom I have often told you (and now tell you weeping) that they are enemies of the Cross of Christ; whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.

But our conversation is in heaven; from where we also look for the Saviour, our Lord Jesus Christ, who will reform the body of His glory, according to the operation whereby He is also able to subdue all things unto Himself.

Therefore, my brethren, dearly beloved, and most desired, my joy and my crown, so stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved. I beg of Evodia, and I beseech Syntyche to be of one mind in the Lord, and I entreat you also, my sincere companion, help those women who have laboured with me in the Gospel with Clement and the rest of my fellow labourers, whose names are in the book of life.

(Usus Antiquior) Twenty-Third Sunday after Pentecost (II Classis) – Sunday, 8 November 2020 : Introit and Collect

Introit

Jeremiah 29 : 11, 12, 14 and Psalm 84 : 2

Dicit Dominus : Ego cogito cogitationes pacis, et non afflictionis : invocabitis me, et ego exaudiam vos : et reducam captivitatem vestram de cunctis locis.

Benedixisti, Domine, terram Tuam : avertisti captivitatem Jacob.

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

English translation

The Lord said, “I think thoughts of peace, and not of affliction. You shall call upon Me, and I will hear you, and I will bring back your captivity from all places.

Lord, You have blessed Your land, You have turned away the captivity of Jacob.

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

Absolve, quaesumus, Domine, Tuorum delicta populorum : ut a peccatorum nexibus, quae pro nostra fragilitate contraximus, Tua benignitate libremur. Per Dominum…

English translation

Remit, we beseech You, o Lord, the sins of Your people, that by Your kindness we may be delivered from the trammels of our sins, in which, through our frailty, we have become entangled. Through our Lord…

Saturday, 7 November 2020 : 31st Week of Ordinary Time (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green or White (Saturday Mass of Our Lady)

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today as we listened to the words of the Scripture, we are all reminded today that we are all as Christians have been called to follow the Lord and devote ourselves to Him wholeheartedly. We should keep this in mind and not to fall into the temptations of money and other worldly pleasures and temptations, all of which are trying to lead us away from God and from His path.

In our Gospel passage today, we heard the continuation of yesterday’s parable of the dishonest steward, in which today the Lord explained its meaning and how it can be related to the lives of the people, to whom the Lord told them the parable. The parable showed how the dishonest steward had misused his authority and became corrupt, in his less than honourable dealings, which were discovered by his master and then leading to him being dismissed from service.

What the steward did after that was to try to provide for himself by committing even more dishonesty, unilaterally rewriting the debts of the others who owed his master money. In doing so, he tried to secure for himself favours as he told himself that he was too embarrassed to beg or unable to do other jobs or works. As we can see from this, the dishonest steward doubled down even more on his dishonesty, and committed even more sins in doing so.

What the Lord wanted all of us to know through these parables and teachings is that, first of all, we must be careful and be vigilant not to fall into those temptations. When He mentioned to them about filthy money in today’s Gospel, He was mentioning the money of the world and how it is usually used, but in fact, He was not saying that money itself by nature was intrinsically evil. As ultimately, money is just a means for exchanging goods and possessions, which unfortunately more often than not end up being entangled with greed and human desires.

Yes, it is the attachment and desire for money that ended up making it ‘filthy’, causing us to do things that are contrary to the way of the Lord, wicked and sinful. And what the Lord said by saying that ‘use filthy money to gain friends so that people may welcome you into the eternal homes’, it may seem confusing for us at first, why the Lord was advocating the use of so-called ‘filthy money’. But this is because we have to understand the context in which the Lord said this statement.

Right immediately after that, He said that, ‘if you had been dishonest in handling filthy money, who would entrust you with true wealth?’ And this is a reference to the worldly possessions, money and material goods that we possess, which is God’s blessings to us. If we have not been honest and good in how we handle all these things, then surely, no one will trust us with anything, including God, with the true wealth mentioned, which is eternal life and glory which He has promised to all those who are faithful to Him.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, we have to realise that our true wealth and treasure is in Heaven, and not in this world. There is no use in accumulating and gaining more and more of these possessions, and worse still, as what some had done, in persecuting and manipulating others, or even extorting and exploiting those who are weaker, poorer and less fortunate for our own gains. These are what the Lord had referred to as being ‘dishonest in handling filthy money’. If we do all these, then God’s share of His promised inheritance will not be ours, and we will be judged by our selfish and sinful deeds.

On the contrary, as Christians, each and every one of us are called to be dutiful and responsible custodians of whatever blessings and resources we have received from God. Some of us have received more, while others received less. Therefore, what God wants us to do, as He has also taught us through His Church is to be charitable and loving, to be generous in sharing and giving our excess to help those who are in need.

Especially during these difficult and challenging times, when many are struggling and suffering with the effects of the still rampant pandemic, the associated economic downturn and other societal problems, all of us are called to step up to live up our faith more readily and with more dedication. What do I mean is that, we must not close our eyes, ears and hearts to those who cry for help, and do what we can, even in small, little ways, to help.

We do not have to do great things for this, brothers and sisters in Christ. Remember what the Lord said, that ‘Whatever you have done to the least of your brothers and sisters, you have done it unto Me?’. This reminds us that as Christians, we have to reach out to those who are in need and those who have none to care for them, for ultimately, they too are our fellow brothers and sisters. We must do what we can, in our respective capacities to reach out to them and help them, love them and show them true care and compassion.

Let us all discern therefore what we are to do with our lives going from now on forward. Are we going to continue being selfish and be tempted by the various worldly temptations? Or are we going to make a difference in the lives of others by showing God’s sincere love to all those who need more of this love and care? Let us be true disciples of Christ, faithful followers of our God in all things, in all of our actions and dealings with one another. May God bless us always, now and forevermore. Amen.