Liturgical Colour : Violet
Lectio Epistolae Beati Pauli Apostoli ad Corinthios – Lesson from the Epistle of Blessed Paul the Apostle to the Corinthians
2 Corinthians 11 : 19-33 and 2 Corinthians 12 : 1-9
Fratres : Libenter suffertis insipientens : Cum sitis ipsi sapientes. Sustinetis enim, si quis vos in servitutem redigit, si quis devorat, si quis accipit, si quis extollitur, si quis in faciem vos caedit. Secundum ignobilitatem dico, quasi nos infirmi fuerimus in hac parte.
In quo quis audet (in insipientia dico) audeo et ego : Hebraei sunt, et ego : Israelitae sunt, et ego : Ministri Christi sunt, (ut minus sapiens dico) plus ego : in laboribus plurimis, in carceribus abundantius, in plagis supra modum, in mortibus frequenter.
A Judaeis quinquies quadragenas, una minus accepi. Ter virgis caesus sum, semel lapidatus sum, ter naufragium feci, nocte et die in profundo maris fui : in itineribus saepe, periculis fluminum, periculis latronum, periculis ex genere, periculis ex gentibus, periculis in civitate, periculis in solitudine, periculis in mari, periculis in falsis fratribus.
In labore et aerumna, in vigiliis multis, in fame et siti, in jejuniis multis, in frigore et nuditate : praeter illa, quae extrinsecus sunt, instantia mea cotidiana, sollicitudo omnium Ecclesiarum. Quis infirmatur, et ego non infirmor? Quis scandalizatur, et ego non uror? Si gloriari oportet : quae infirmitatis meae sunt, gloriabor.
Deus et Pater Domini nostri Jesu Christi, qui est benedictus in saecula, scit quod non mentior. Damasci praepositus gentis Aretae regis, custodiebat civitatem Damascenorum, ut me comprehenderet : et per fenestram in sports dimissus sum per murum, et sic effugi manus ejus.
Si gloriari oportet (non expedit quidem), veniam autem ad visiones et revelationes Domini. Scio hominem in Christo ante annos quatuordecim, (sive in corpore nescio, sive extra corpus nescio, Deus scit 🙂 raptum hujusmodi usque ad tertium caelum.
Et scio hujusmodi hominem, (sive in corpore, sive extra corpus nescio, Deus scit 🙂 quoniam raptus est in paradisum : et audivit arcana verba, quae non licet homini loqui. Pro hujusmodi gloriabor : pro me autem nihil gloriabor nisi in infirmitatibus meis. Nam, et si voluero gloriari, non ero insipiens : veritatem enim dicam.
Parco autem, ne quis me existimet supra id, quod videt in me, aut aliquid audit ex me. Et ne magnitudo revelationem extollat me, datus est mihi stimulus carnis meae angelus satanae, qui me colaphizet. Propter quod ter Dominum rogavi, ut discederet a me : et dixit mihi : Sufficit tibi gratia mea : nam virtus in infirmitate perficitur. Libenter igitur gloriabor in infirmitatibus meis, ut inhabitet in me virtus Christi.
Brethren, you gladly suffer the foolish, whereas yourselves are wise. For you suffer if a man bring you into bondage, if a man devour you, if a man take from you, if a man be lifted up, if a man strike you in the face. I speak according to dishonour, as if we had been weak in this part.
Wherein if any man dare (I speak foolishly), I also dare. They are Hebrews, so am I. They are Israelites, so am I. They are the seed of Abraham, so am I. They are the ministers of Christ (I speak as one less wise), I am more, in many more labours, in prisons more frequently, in stripes above measure, in deaths often.
Of the Jews five times I have received forty stripes save one. Thrice I was beaten with rods, and I was stoned once. I suffered shipwreck thrice, a night and a day I was in the depth of the sea. In journeying often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils from my own nation, in perils from the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils from false brethren.
In labour and painfulness, in much watchings, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness, besides those things which are without, my daily instance, the solicitude for all the churches. Who is weak, and am I not weak? Who is scandalised, and am I not on fire? If I have to glorify, I will glory on the things that concern my infirmity.
The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is Blessed forever, knows that I do not lie. At Damascus the governor of the nation under Aretas the king guarded the city of the Damascenes to apprehend me, and through a window in a basket I was let down by the wall, and so escaped his hands.
If I must glorify (it is not expedient indeed), but I will come to the visions and revelations of the Lord. I know a man in Christ above fourteen years ago (whether in the body, I do not know, or out of the body, I do not know, only God knows), such a person rapt even to the third heaven.
And I know such a man (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell, only God knows) that he was caught up into paradise, and heard secret words, which it is not granted to man to utter. For such a person I will glorify, but for myself I will glorify nothing, but in my infirmities. For though I should have a mind for glory, I shall not be foolish, for I will say the truth.
But I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he sees on me, or anything he hears from me, and lest the greatness of the revelations should exalt me, there was given to me a sting of my flesh, an angel of Satan, to buffet me. For which thing I besought the Lord, that it might depart from me. And He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in infirmity. Gladly therefore I will glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may dwell in me.