Monday, October 29, 2012


A Prayer for Workers

O glorious Joseph!
Who concealed your incomparable and regal dignity of custodian of Jesus and of the Virgin Mary under the humble appearance of a craftsman and provided for them with your work,
protect with loving power your sons, especially entrusted to you.

You know their anxieties and sufferings,
because you yourself experienced them at the side of Jesus and of His Mother.
Do not allow them,
oppressed by so many worries,
to forget the purpose for which they were created by God.
Do not allow the seeds of distrust to take hold of their immortal souls.
Remind all the workers that in the fields,
in factories, in mines, and in scientific laboratories,
they are not working, rejoicing, or suffering alone,
but at their side is Jesus, with Mary, His Mother and ours,
to sustain them, to dry the sweat of their brow,
giving value to their toil.
Teach them to turn work into a very high instrument of sanctification as you did.



Monday of the Thirtieth Week in Ordinary Time

Eph 4:32-5:8

Brothers and sisters:

Be kind to one another, compassionate,
forgiving one another as God has forgiven you in Christ.

Be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love,
as Christ loved us and handed himself over for us
as a sacrificial offering to God for a fragrant aroma.
Immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be mentioned among you,
as is fitting among holy ones,
no obscenity or silly or suggestive talk, which is out of place,
but instead, thanksgiving.
Be sure of this, that no immoral or impure or greedy person,
that is, an idolater,
has any inheritance in the Kingdom of Christ and of God.

Let no one deceive you with empty arguments,
for because of these things
the wrath of God is coming upon the disobedient.
So do not be associated with them.
For you were once darkness,
but now you are light in the Lord.
Live as children of light.

Responsorial Psalm
Ps 1:1-2, 3, 4 And 6

R. Behave like God as his very dear children.

Blessed the man who follows not
the counsel of the wicked
Nor walks in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the company of the insolent,
But delights in the law of the LORD
and meditates on his law day and night.

R. Behave like God as his very dear children.

He is like a tree
planted near running water,
That yields its fruit in due season,
and whose leaves never fade.
Whatever he does, prospers.

R. Behave like God as his very dear children.

Not so the wicked, not so;
they are like chaff which the wind drives away.
For the LORD watches over the way of the just,
but the way of the wicked vanishes.

R. Behave like God as his very dear children.

Lk 13:10-17

Jesus was teaching in a synagogue on the sabbath.
And a woman was there who for eighteen years
had been crippled by a spirit;
she was bent over, completely incapable of standing erect.

When Jesus saw her, he called to her and said,

"Woman, you are set free of your infirmity."

He laid his hands on her,
and she at once stood up straight and glorified God.
But the leader of the synagogue,
indignant that Jesus had cured on the sabbath,
said to the crowd in reply,
"There are six days when work should be done.
Come on those days to be cured, not on the sabbath day."

The Lord said to him in reply,

Does not each one of you on the sabbath
untie his ox or his ass from the manger
and lead it out for watering?
This daughter of Abraham,
whom Satan has bound for eighteen years now,
ought she not to have been set free on the sabbath day
from this bondage?"

When he said this, all his adversaries were humiliated;
and the whole crowd rejoiced at all the splendid deeds done by him.


October 29

St. Narcissus of Jerusalem (d. 215)

Life in second- and third-century Jerusalem couldn’t have been easy, but St. Narcissus managed to live well beyond 100. Some even speculate he lived to 160.

Details of his life are sketchy, but there are many reports of his miracles. The miracle for which he is most remembered was turning water into oil for use in the church lamps on Holy Saturday when the deacons had forgotten to provide any.

We do know that Narcissus became bishop of Jerusalem in the late second century. He was known for his holiness, but there are hints that many people found him harsh and rigid in his efforts to impose church discipline. One of his many detractors accused Narcissus of a serious crime at one point. Though the charges against him did not hold up, he used the occasion to retire from his role as bishop and live in solitude. His disappearance was so sudden and convincing that many people assumed he had actually died.

Several successors were appointed during his years in isolation. Finally, Narcissus reappeared in Jerusalem and was persuaded to resume his duties. By then, he had reached an advanced age, so a younger bishop was brought in to assist him until his death.


O Lord, open my lips.
And my mouth will proclaim your praise.

Invitatory Psalm
Psalm 99 (100)

Let us rejoice in the Lord and extol him with songs.

– Let us rejoice in the Lord and extol him with songs.

Rejoice in the Lord, all the earth,
and serve him with joy.
Exult as you enter his presence.

– Let us rejoice in the Lord and extol him with songs.

Know that the Lord is God.
He made us and we are his
– his people, the sheep of his flock.

– Let us rejoice in the Lord and extol him with songs.

Cry out his praises as you enter his gates,
fill his courtyards with songs.
Proclaim him and bless his name;
for the Lord is our delight.
His mercy lasts for ever,
his faithfulness through all the ages.

– Let us rejoice in the Lord and extol him with songs.

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.

– Let us rejoice in the Lord and extol him with songs.


Come, Spirit blest, with God the Son
and God the Father, ever one:
shed forth your grace within our breast
and live in us, a ready guest.
By every power, by heart and tongue,
by act and deed, your praise be sung.
Inflame with perfect love each sense,
that others’ souls may kindle thence.

Psalm 30 (31)
Trustful prayer in time of adversity

Hear me, Lord, and come to rescue me.

In you, Lord, I put my trust: may I never be put to shame.
In your justice, set me free,
Turn your ear to me,
make haste to rescue me.
Be my rampart, my fortification;
keep me safe.
For you are my strength and my refuge:
you will lead me out to the pastures,
for your own name’s sake.
You will lead me out of the trap that they laid for me –
for you are my strength.
Into your hands I commend my spirit:
you have redeemed me, Lord God of truth.
You hate those who run after vain nothings;
but I put my trust in the Lord.
I will rejoice and be glad in your kindness,
for you have looked on me, lowly as I am.
You saw when my soul was in need:
you did not leave me locked in the grip of the enemy,
but set my feet on free and open ground.

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.

Hear me, Lord, and come to rescue me.

Psalm 30 (31)

Lord, let your face shine on your servant.

Take pity on me, Lord, for I am troubled:
my eyes grow weak with sorrow,
the very centre of my being is disturbed.
For my life is worn out with distress,
my years with groaning;
my strength becomes weakness,
my bones melt away.
I am a scandal and a disgrace,
so many are my enemies;
to my friends and neighbours,
I am a thing to fear.
When they see me in the street,
they run from me.
I have vanished from their minds as though I were dead,
or like a pot that is broken.
I know this – for I have heard the scolding of the crowd.
There is terror all around,
for when they come together against me
it is my life they are resolved to take.
But I put my trust in you, Lord;
I say: “You are my God,
my fate is in your hands.”
Tear me from the grip of my enemies,
from those who hound me;
let your face shine upon your servant,
in your kindness, save me.

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.

Lord, let your face shine on your servant.

Psalm 30 (31)

Blessed be the Lord, who has shown me the wonders of his love.

How very many are the pleasures, Lord,
that you have stored up for those who fear you.
You have made these things ready for those who trust in you,
to give them in the sight of all men.
Far away from the plottings of men
you hide them in your secret place.
You keep them safe in your dwelling-place
far from lying tongues.
Blessed be the Lord,
for he has shown me his wonderful kindness
within the fortified city.
In my terror, I said
“I am cut off from your sight”;
but you heard the voice of my prayer
when I called to you.
Love the Lord, all his chosen ones.
The Lord keeps his faithful ones safe,
heaps rich revenge on the arrogant.
Be brave, let your hearts be strong,
all who trust in the Lord.

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.

Blessed be the Lord, who has shown me the wonders of his love.

Guide me in your truth, Lord, and teach me;
– for you are my God and my salvation.

Wisdom 1:16,2:10-24

The godless call with deed and word for Death,
counting him friend, they wear themselves out for him,
with him they make a pact,
and are fit to be his partners.
‘As for the virtuous man who is poor, let us oppress him;
let us not spare the widow,
nor respect old age, white-haired with many years.
Let our strength be the yardstick of virtue,
since weakness argues its own futility.
Let us lie in wait for the virtuous man, since he annoys us
and opposes our way of life,
reproaches us for our breaches of the law
and accuses us of playing false to our upbringing.
He claims to have knowledge of God,
and calls himself a son of the Lord.
Before us he stands, a reproof to our way of thinking,
the very sight of him weighs our spirits down;
his way of life is not like other men’s,
the paths he treads are unfamiliar.
In his opinion we are counterfeit;
he holds aloof from our doings as though from filth;
he proclaims the final end of the virtuous as happy
and boasts of having God for his father.
Let us see if what he says is true,
let us observe what kind of end he himself will have.
If the virtuous man is God’s son, God will take his part
and rescue him from the clutches of his enemies.
Let us test him with cruelty and with torture,
and thus explore this gentleness of his
and put his endurance to the proof.
Let us condemn him to a shameful death
since he will be looked after – we have his word for it.’
This is the way they reason, but they are misled,
their malice makes them blind.
They do not know the hidden things of God,
they have no hope that holiness will be rewarded,
they can see no reward for blameless souls.
Yet God did make man imperishable,
he made him in the image of his own nature;
it was the devil’s envy that brought death into the world,
as those who are his partners will discover.


The wicked ask:
‘Where is the just man?
We must plot to get rid of him;
he will not lend himself to our purposes;
he calls himself the son of God.
Let us put his claims to the proof:
if to be just is, indeed, to be God’s son,
then God will save him from the power of his enemies.’

‘He trusts in God; let God deliver him now, if he desires him.
He said: “I am the son of God.” Let us put his claims to the proof:
if to be just is, indeed, to be God’s son,
then God will save him from the power of his enemies.’

St Clement's letter to the Corinthians

Let us not be fugitives from the will of God

My dear friends, take care to do good and virtuous deeds in unity before him, and be citizens worthy of him; or his many good works towards us may become a judgement on us all. For, as he says somewhere, The spirit of the Lord is a lamp searching the inward parts.

Let us observe how near he is, and that nothing escapes him: not the thoughts we think, not the arguments we construct. It is right, therefore, that we should not be deserters from his will. Let us offend foolish and thoughtless men, men who puff themselves up and boast in the pride of their words, rather than offending God.

Let us reverence the Lord Jesus Christ, whose blood was given for us. Let us respect those who rule us; let us honour the aged; let us instruct the young in the fear of God.

Let us lead our wives to what is good: let them exhibit the lovely habit of purity, let them show forth the innocent will of meekness, let them make the gentleness of their tongue manifest by their silence, let them give their affection without favouritism but in holiness equally to all who fear God.

Let our children share in the instruction which is in Christ, let them learn the strength of humility before God, the power of pure love before God, how beautiful and great is his fear and how it gives salvation to all who live holily in it with a pure mind. For he is a searcher of thoughts and desires; his breath is in us, and he chooses when to take it away from us.

Now the faith which is in Christ confirms all these things, for he himself through his Holy Spirit calls us: Come, Children, hearken to me, I will teach you the fear of the Lord. Who is the man that desires life, that loves to see good days? Make your tongue cease from evil, make your lips speak no guile. Depart from evil, and do good. Seek peace, and pursue it.

The all-merciful and beneficent Father has compassion on those that fear him, and kindly and lovingly bestows his favours on those that draw near to him with a sincere intention. So let us not be in two minds, and let us have no doubts about his excellent and glorious gifts.


Praise the Lord God at all times and ask him to guide your course.
Then all you do and all you plan will prosper.

Serve God and do what pleases him in sincerity and with all your strength.
Then all you do and all you plan will prosper.

Let us pray.

Lord God, deepen our faith,
strengthen our hope,
enkindle our love;
and so that we may obtain what you promise,
make us love what you command.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Let us bless the Lord.
– Thanks be to God.