(Usus Antiquior) First Sunday of Advent (I Classis) – Sunday, 28 November 2021 : Offertory, Secret Prayer of the Priest, Communion and Post-Communion Prayer

Liturgical Colour : Violet

Offertory

Psalm 24 : 1-3

Ad Te levavi animam meam : Deus meus, in Te confido, non erubescam : neque irrideant me inimici mei : etenim universi, qui Te exspectant, non confundentur.

English translation

To You, o Lord, have I lifted up my soul : in You, o my God, I put my trust, let me not be ashamed. Neither let my enemies laugh at me, for none of them who wait on You shall be confounded.

Secret Prayer of the Priest

Haec sacra nos, Domine, potenti virtute mundatos ad suum faciant puriores venire principium. Per Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium Tuum, qui Tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

English translation

Cleansing us by their mighty power, may these Holy Mysteries, o Lord, make us become more pure before You Who are their Author. 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 84 : 13

Dominus dabit benignitatem : et terra nostra dabit fructum suum.

English translation

The Lord will give goodness, and our earth shall yield her fruit.

Post-Communion Prayer

Suscipiamus, Domine, misericordiam Tuam in medio templi Tui : ut reparationis nostrae ventura sollemnia congruis honoribus praecedamus. 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 we receive Your mercy, o Lord, in the midst of Your Temple, that with due reverence we may prepare for the coming festival of our redemption. 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) First Sunday of Advent (I Classis) – Sunday, 28 November 2021 : Holy Gospel

Liturgical Colour : Violet

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

Luke 21 : 25-33

In illo tempore : Dixit Jesus discipulis Suis : Erunt signa in sole et luna et stellis, et in terris pressura gentium prae confusione sonitus maris et fluctuum : arescentibus hominibus prae timore et exspectatione, quae supervenient universo orbi.

Nam virtutes caelorum movebuntur. Et tunc videbunt Filium Hominis venientem in nube cum potestate magna et majestate. His autem fieri incipientibus, respicite et levate capita vestra : quoniam appropinquat redemptio vestra.

Et dixit illis similitudinem : Videte ficulneam et omnes arbores : cum producunt jam ex se fructum, scitis, quoniam prope est aestas. Ita et vos, cum videritis haec fieri, scitote, quoniam prope est regnum Dei. Amen, dico vobis, quia non praeteribit generatio haec, donec omnia fiant. Caelum et terra transibunt : verba autem mea non transibunt.

English translation

At that time, Jesus said to His disciples, “There shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars, and upon the earth distress of nations, by reason of the confusion of the roaring of the sea and of the waves, men withering away for fear and expectation of what shall come upon the whole world.”

“For the powers of heaven shall be moved, and then they shall see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with great power and majesty. But when these things begin to come to pass, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is at hand.”

And He spoke to them a similitude, “See the fig tree, and all the trees, when they now shoot forth their fruit, you know that summer is nigh; so you also, when you shall see these things come to pass, know that the kingdom of God is at hand. Amen, I say to you, this generation shall not pass away, till all things be fulfilled. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words shall not pass away.”

(Usus Antiquior) First Sunday of Advent (I Classis) – Sunday, 28 November 2021 : Gradual and Alleluia

Liturgical Colour : Violet

Psalm 24 : 3-4 and Psalm 84 : 8

Universi, qui Te exspectant, non confundentur, Domine.

Response : Vias Tuas, Domine, notas fac mihi : et semitas Tuas edoce me.

Alleluja, Alleluja.

Response : Ostende nobis, Domine, misericordiam Tuam : et salutare Tuum da nobis. Alleluja.

English translation

None of those who wait on You shall be confounded.

Response : Show, o Lord, Your ways to me, and teach me Your paths.

Alleluia, Alleluia.

Response : Show us, o Lord, Your mercy, and grant us Your salvation. Alleluia.

(Usus Antiquior) First Sunday of Advent (I Classis) – Sunday, 28 November 2021 : Epistle

Liturgical Colour : Violet

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

Romans 13 : 11-14

Fratres : Scientes, quia hora est jam nos de somno surgere. Nunc enim propior est nostra salus, quam cum credidimus. Nox praecessit, dies autem appropinquavit. Abjiciamus ergo opera tenebrarum, et induamur arma lucis.

Sicut in die honeste ambulemus : non in comessationibus et ebrietatibus, non in cubilibus et impudicitiis, non in contentione et aemulatione : sed induimini Dominum Jesum Christum.

English translation

Brethren, knowing the time, that it is now the hour for us to rise from sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we believed. The night is past, and the day is at hand, let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and put on the armour of light.

Let us walk honestly as in the day, not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and impurities, not in contention and envy, but put you on the Lord Jesus Christ.

(Usus Antiquior) First Sunday of Advent (I Classis) – Sunday, 28 November 2021 : Introit and Collect

Liturgical Colour : Violet

Introit

Psalm 24 : 1-3 and 4

Ad Te levavi animam meam : Deus meus, in Te confido, non erubescam : neque irrideant me inimici mei : etenim universi, qui Te exspectant, non confundentur.

Vias Tuas, Domine, demonstra mihi : et semitas Tuas edoce me.

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

English translation

To You, o Lord, have I lifted up my soul : in You, o my God, I put my trust, let me not be ashamed. Neither let my enemies laugh at me, for none of them who wait on You shall be confounded.

Show, o Lord, Your ways to me, and teach me Your paths.

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

Excita, quaesumus, Domine, potentiam Tuam, et veni : ut ab imminentibus peccatorum nostrorum periculis, Te mereamur protegente eripi, Te liberante salvari. Qui Vivis et regnas in unitate Spiritus Sancti Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.

English translation

Bestir, o Lord, Your might, we pray to You, and come, that, defended by You, we may deserve rescue from approaching dangers brought on by our sins, and being set free by You, obtain our salvation. You Who lives and reigns in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, world without end. Amen.

Saturday, 27 November 2021 : 34th 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, on this last day of our current liturgical year, we are all again reminded as we have constantly been for the rest of this week of the coming of the Lord and His salvation at the very end of time. We are reminded not to be complacent and idle in how we live our lives in this world so that we do not end up being caught unprepared and unaware at the coming of the Lord’s judgment and time of reckoning.

As we listened from our first reading today taken from the Book of the prophet Daniel, we heard of the conclusion of this week’s apocalyptic readings from the Book of Daniel, detailing the heavenly vision of Daniel regarding the end of times and the coming of God’s salvation. Daniel had seen how the faithful people of God will face sufferings, trials and challenges just as he himself and his other compatriots in faith had also suffered for their continued faith in God during their exile in Babylon.

The Lord showed Daniel the vision of the ones who will persecute the faithful, the great beasts in his vision that brought suffering and will cause great harm to the people of God. As I mentioned in the earlier days this week, the same kind of vision was also given in even greater detail to St. John the Apostle which he recorded in his Revelations. Through what we have heard from both sources, those great beasts of the end times actually are references to the forces of Satan, the great enemy of all the faithful, that are trying to bring about our destruction by various means.

Those beasts are also metaphorical representations of the great kingdoms and states that were the ones and are going to be the ones in our own future that brought about and will bring about great persecution of the faithful. We certainly knew of how the Jewish authorities and later on the Romans persecuted the Christians, their leaders and the faithful in so many occasions, and then followed by so many other occasions throughout history, the countless martyrs that were created from many episodes of continued persecutions of the faithful and the Church.

Even to our very own present day, many of our fellow Christian brothers and sisters are still being persecuted daily and are denied the opportunity to practice their faith freely and openly. Many had to go into hiding and keep their faith secretly much in the same way as how the early Christians had to hide from the authorities amidst many brutal persecutions against them. And even in other places, even perhaps in our own communities, where Christians are not persecuted per se, we can see growing break with the fundamental Christian truths and how more and more people who are holding on to the truth of God are being ridiculed, ostracised and sidelined.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, just as we heard from our Gospel passage today in which the Lord reminded all of His disciples to guard themselves from drunkenness and also complacency and always to be ready for anything that comes our way, then we are all reminded to be active in living our lives as Christians and to be courageous in keeping our faith alive and present in our daily lives. The Lord has provided and blessed us with many things, with His truth, wisdom and guidance, and so we should make good use of the many opportunities that He has given to us.

As we come to the end of this current liturgical year and begin the new one with the season of Advent, let us all ask ourselves brothers and sisters in Christ, are we ready to live our lives in a new way, according to the path that the Lord has shown us? And are we ready to change ourselves for the better and no longer subject ourselves to the temptations of worldliness and our wicked desires? Let us ponder these carefully in our hearts and discern how we are to live our lives as good and dedicated Christians from now on.

As we enter into this new season of Advent beginning tomorrow, let us all prepare our hearts and minds, our whole being to welcome the Lord and to be ready to celebrate Christmas worthily. Let us no longer be idle and complacent, but be ever ready to welcome the Lord wholeheartedly into our houses, into our hearts and into ourselves. May God be with us all and may He bless all of us in our every endeavours, now and always. Amen.

Saturday, 27 November 2021 : 34th Week of Ordinary Time (Gospel Reading)

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

Luke 21 : 34-36

At that time, Jesus said to the people, “Be on your guard : do not immerse yourselves in a life of pleasure, drunkenness and worldly cares, lest that day catch you unaware, like a trap! For, like a snare, will that day come upon all the inhabitants of the earth. But watch at all times and pray, that you may be able to escape all that is going to happen, and to stand before the Son of Man.”

Saturday, 27 November 2021 : 34th Week of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

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

Daniel 3 : 82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 87

All people on earth, praise and exalt Him forever.

Israel, praise and exalt Him forever.

Priests of the Lord, praise and exalt Him forever.

Servants of the Lord, praise and exalt Him forever.

Spirits and souls of the just, praise and exalt Him forever.

Those who are holy and humble of heart, praise and exalt Him forever.

Saturday, 27 November 2021 : 34th Week of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

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

Daniel 7 : 15-27

I, Daniel, was deeply troubled, since these visions terrified me. I approached one of those who were standing there, and asked him to tell me what all this meant. He answered me and gave me the interpretation of these things : ‘These four beasts are four kings who will rise from the earth. But the holy ones of the Most High shall receive the kingdom, to possess it eternally, forever and ever.’

Then I wanted to know the meaning of the fourth beast, different from the others, extraordinarily terrifying, with iron teeth and bronze claws; that ate, tore into pieces and crushed underfoot whatever remained. I also wanted to know about the ten horns it had on its head, and about the other horn which had sprung up, and the first three horns that fell, and about this horn with eyes and a mouth that spoke with arrogance, and that looked greater than the other horns.

As I looked, this horn waged war against the holy ones and was subduing them until the One of Great Age came, to do justice for the holy ones of the Most High, and the time came for the holy ones to take possession of the kingdom. Then I was told : ‘The fourth animal shall be a fourth kingdom on earth, different from all the kingdoms. It will devour the earth, crush it and destroy it.’

‘The ten horns are ten kings who shall rise from this kingdom. Another one will rise up after them and destroy three kings. This king shall insult the Most High and persecute the holy ones of the Most High. He shall try to change the feasts and the laws. The holy ones shall be handed over to his power for a time, two times, and half a time.’

‘But judgment will come and dominion will be taken from him; he shall be destroyed and utterly wiped out. The kingship, dominion and leadership of all the kingdoms of the world shall be given to the people of the holy ones of God Most High : His kingdom will be without end. All the kingdoms shall serve Him and be subject to Him.’

Friday, 26 November 2021 : 34th Week of Ordinary Time (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today as we listened to the words of the Scriptures we are all presented with the vision that the prophet Daniel received regarding the end of times, seeing what St. John the Apostle later on also saw as was written in his own Book of Revelations of St. John. We heard of the actions of the devil, Satan, the great enemy of all, and how he was overthrown and crushed by the power of the triumphant God.

This Scripture reading from the Book of the prophet Daniel regarding the coming of the great beasts of the end of times, the manifestation of Satan and his forces that were arrayed against God and His faithful ones, in the final attempt at dominion and power. Through what he had seen, Daniel saw how the devil exercised his power in this world, through the rising of states and forces that persecuted the faithful people of God, as many throughout history suffered for their faith and devotion to God.

However, as we heard from the ending of his vision, he saw the triumphant God reigning over all, destroying that despised great enemy and beast, and in a final victory, cast down that beast and dealt it a final defeat from which it never recovers. This is the same vision and message that St. John the Apostle also later received as recorded in the Book of Revelations, of the triumph of God and all of His faithful ones, and the reign of Christ, as King over all and as the Saviour of all.

Daniel saw Him as the Son of Man, yet unrevealed to the world, given Dominion and Power by the One of Great Age, God the Father, Who was to later come into this world as the Saviour, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Essentially what he saw was a prefigurement of Christ and the salvation that He would bring to the people, in the time to come, and then which message was later reinforced by the similar revelation given to St. John after Christ, the Son of Man and Son of God had revealed Himself and His salvation to all.

And St. John received an even more detailed revelation which described what would happen at the end of days, when Satan, the great beast will persecute the faithful with greater intensity and blaspheme further against God, and many will be forced to choose sides, and many of the people will side with him and only a few will remain faithful to God and His truth. But God will not forget about them or their faith in Him, and He will gather them all, all of us, past, present and future to the end of time to His presence.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, as we heard in our Gospel passage today, the Lord Jesus Himself told His disciples that the coming of the time of reckoning and the end of time will be coming soon, just that we will never know the exact timing of this happening. But what He assured all of His disciples and therefore all of us is that His kingdom and dominion will always endure, no matter what, and in the end, we will be triumphant with Him if we remain faithful and truly dedicated to Him.

The question is, are we all able to commit ourselves to the Lord as we should? Are we able and willing to make the sacrifices knowing that trials and tribulations, challenges and difficulties will always be on our path in life? These are the questions that we should ask ourselves constantly as we navigate our lives in this world. Are we capable of remaining true to our faith and being vigilant at all times, so that in our every actions, deeds, interactions and all that we do, we always proclaim the glory of God to the world.

May the Lord be with us all and may He strengthen each and every one of us to remain strong and courageous in our faith that we do not easily give up our struggle in faith, and that we may always hold strongly to that faith we have in Him. May God bless us in our every actions, now and always, forevermore. Amen.