Friday, January 17, 2014


Litany of Saint Anthony the Great

First of all monks, your name they hail,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Charity has gained such heights for you,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Wonderworker known for favors gained,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Humbly you obeyed with strength and love,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Shield for those who came to seek your aid,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Healer of all ills and guide for souls,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Spring and treasure house of charity,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Ever shining star and lamp of light,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Table of the Law and Gospel book,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Guide of those in doubt and ignorance,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Lamp of those who walk in darkness now,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Light of Holy Mother Church, your merits shines,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Peace for those who dread the enemy,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Gladness for the sad, strength for the tried,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Faithful to your word and ever true,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Sun of monks and nuns and start for all,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

Temple arch who holds the power of God,
Great St. Antony, we beg your prayers

V. Pray for us, Great Saint Antony
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ

Let us Pray:

Father Antony,
you equaled Elias in his zeal and followed John the Baptist in his holy way of life.
You peopled the wilderness and established the world on the firm foundation of your prayers.
Intercede with Christ God that He may save our souls.



Memorial of Saint Anthony, Abbot

1 SM 8:4-7, 10-22A

All the elders of Israel came in a body to Samuel at Ramah
and said to him, “Now that you are old,
and your sons do not follow your example,
appoint a king over us, as other nations have, to judge us.”

Samuel was displeased when they asked for a king to judge them.
He prayed to the LORD, however, who said in answer:
“Grant the people’s every request.
It is not you they reject, they are rejecting me as their king.”

Samuel delivered the message of the LORD in full
to those who were asking him for a king.
He told them:
“The rights of the king who will rule you will be as follows:
He will take your sons and assign them to his chariots and horses,
and they will run before his chariot.
He will also appoint from among them his commanders of groups
of a thousand and of a hundred soldiers.
He will set them to do his plowing and his harvesting,
and to make his implements of war and the equipment of his chariots.
He will use your daughters as ointment makers, as cooks, and as bakers.
He will take the best of your fields, vineyards, and olive groves,
and give them to his officials.
He will tithe your crops and your vineyards,
and give the revenue to his eunuchs and his slaves.
He will take your male and female servants,
as well as your best oxen and your asses,
and use them to do his work.
He will tithe your flocks and you yourselves will become his slaves.
When this takes place,
you will complain against the king whom you have chosen,
but on that day the LORD will not answer you.”

The people, however, refused to listen to Samuel’s warning and said,
“Not so! There must be a king over us.
We too must be like other nations,
with a king to rule us and to lead us in warfare
and fight our battles.”
When Samuel had listened to all the people had to say,
he repeated it to the LORD, who then said to him,
“Grant their request and appoint a king to rule them.”

Responsorial Psalm
PS 89:16-17, 18-19

R. For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.

Blessed the people who know the joyful shout;
in the light of your countenance, O LORD, they walk.
At your name they rejoice all the day,
and through your justice they are exalted.

R. For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.

For you are the splendor of their strength,
and by your favor our horn is exalted.
For to the LORD belongs our shield,
and to the Holy One of Israel, our King.

R. For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.

MK 2:1-12

When Jesus returned to Capernaum after some days,
it became known that he was at home.
Many gathered together so that there was no longer room for them,
not even around the door,
and he preached the word to them.
They came bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men.
Unable to get near Jesus because of the crowd,
they opened up the roof above him.
After they had broken through,
they let down the mat on which the paralytic was lying.

When Jesus saw their faith, he said to him,

“Child, your sins are forgiven.”

Now some of the scribes were sitting there asking themselves,
“Why does this man speak that way? He is blaspheming.
Who but God alone can forgive sins?”

Jesus immediately knew in his mind what
they were thinking to themselves,
so he said,

“Why are you thinking such things in your hearts?
Which is easier, to say to the paralytic,
‘Your sins are forgiven,’
or to say, ‘Rise, pick up your mat and walk’?
But that you may know
that the Son of Man has authority to forgive sins on earth”
–he said to the paralytic,
“I say to you, rise, pick up your mat, and go home.”

He rose, picked up his mat at once,
and went away in the sight of everyone.
They were all astounded
and glorified God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this.”


January 17

St. Anthony of Egypt (251-356)

The life of Anthony will remind many people of St. Francis of Assisi. At 20, Anthony was so moved by the Gospel message, “Go, sell what you have, and give to [the] poor” (Mark 10:21b), that he actually did just that with his large inheritance. He is different from Francis in that most of Anthony’s life was spent in solitude. He saw the world completely covered with snares, and gave the Church and the world the witness of solitary asceticism, great personal mortification and prayer. But no saint is antisocial, 
and Anthony drew many people to himself for spiritual healing and guidance.

At 54, he responded to many requests and founded a sort of monastery of scattered cells. Again like Francis, 
he had great fear of “stately buildings and well-laden tables.”

At 60, he hoped to be a martyr in the renewed Roman persecution of 311, fearlessly exposing himself to danger while giving moral and material support to those in prison. At 88, he was fighting the Arian heresy, that massive trauma from which it took the Church centuries to recover. “The mule kicking over the altar” denied the divinity of Christ.

Anthony is associated in art with a T-shaped cross, a pig and a book. The pig and the cross are symbols of his valiant warfare with the devil—the cross his constant means of power over evil spirits, the pig a symbol of the devil himself. 
The book recalls his preference for “the book of nature” over the printed word. 
Anthony died in solitude at 105.


O Lord, open my lips,
and my mouth will proclaim Your Praise!

Invitatory Psalm
Psalm 66 (67)

How wonderful is God among his saints:
come, let us adore him.

O God, take pity on us and bless us,
and let your face shine upon us,
so that your ways may be known across the world,
and all nations learn of your salvation.

How wonderful is God among his saints:
come, let us adore him.

Let the peoples praise you, O God,
let all the peoples praise you.
Let the nations be glad and rejoice,
for you judge the peoples with fairness
and you guide the nations of the earth.

How wonderful is God among his saints:
come, let us adore him.

Let the peoples praise you, O God,
let all the peoples praise you.
The earth has produced its harvest:
may God, our God, bless us.
May God bless us,
may the whole world revere him.

How wonderful is God among his saints:
come, let us adore him.

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.

How wonderful is God among his saints:
come, let us adore him.

Stanbrook Abbey Hymnal

In ancient times God spoke to us
Through prophets, and in varied ways,
But now he speaks through Christ his Son,
His radiance through eternal days.
To God the Father of the world,
His Son through whom he made all things,
And Holy Spirit, bond of love,
All glad creation glory sings.

Psalm 34 (35)
The Lord, a savior in time of persecution

O Lord, arise to help me.

Judge, Lord, those who are judging me:
attack those who are attacking me.
Take up your shield and come out to defend me.
Brandish your spear and hold back my pursuers.
Say to my soul, “I am your deliverance.”
Let them be thrown into confusion,
those who are after my life.
Let them be weakened and put to flight,
those who plan harm to me.
Let them be like chaff blowing in the wind,
when the angel of the Lord scatters them.
Let their paths be dark and slippery,
when the angel of the Lord harries them.
For it was without cause that they spread out their nets to ensnare me,
without cause that they dug a pit to take my life.
Let death come upon them suddenly,
may they be entangled in their own nets.
But my soul will exult in the Lord
and rejoice in his aid.
My bones themselves will say
“Lord, who is your equal?”
You snatch the poor man
from the hand of the strong,
the needy and weak
from those who would destroy them.

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.

O Lord, arise to help me.

Psalm 34 (35)

Lord, plead my cause;
defend me with your strength.

Lying witnesses rose up against me;
they asked me questions I could not answer.
They paid me back evil for the good I did,
my soul is desolation.
Yet I – when they were ill, I put on sackcloth,
I mortified my soul with fasting,
I prayed for them from the depths of my heart.
I walked in sadness as for a close friend, for a brother;
I was bowed down with grief as if mourning my own mother.
But they – when I was unsteady, they rejoiced and gathered together.
They gathered and beat me: I did not know why.
They were tearing me to pieces, there was no end to it:
they teased me, heaped derision on me, they ground their teeth at 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, plead my cause;
defend me with your strength.

Psalm 34 (35)

My tongue shall speak of your justice, all day long.

Lord, how long will you wait?
Rescue my life from their attacks,
my only life from the lions.
I will proclaim you in the great assembly,
in the throng of people I will praise you.
Let not my lying enemies triumph over me,
those who hate me for no reason,
who conspire against me by secret signs,
who do not speak of peace,
who plan crimes against the innocent,
who cry out slanders against me,
saying “Yes! Yes! We saw it ourselves!”
You see them, Lord, do not stay silent:
Lord, do not leave me.
Rise up and keep watch at my trial:
my God and my Lord, watch over my case.
Judge me according to your justice,
Lord: my God, let them not rejoice over me!
Let them not think to themselves,
“Yes! We have what we wanted!”
Let them not say,
“We have swallowed him up.”
But let those who support my cause rejoice,
let them say always “How great is the Lord,
who takes care of his servant’s welfare.”
And my tongue too will ponder your justice,
and praise you all day long.

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.

My tongue shall speak of your justice, all day long.

My son, keep my words in your heart.
– Follow my commandments and you will live.

First Reading
Ecclesiasticus 43:14-37

Praise of God in his creation

By his command the Lord sends the snow,
he speeds the lightning as he orders.
In the same way, his treasuries open
and the clouds fly out like birds.
In his great might he banks up the clouds,
and shivers them into fragments of hail.
At sight of him the mountains rock,
at the roar of his thunder the earth writhes in labour.
At his will the south wind blows,
or the storm from the north and the whirlwind.
He sprinkles snow like birds alighting,
it comes down like locusts settling.
The eye marvels at the beauty of its whiteness,
and the mind is amazed at its falling.
The cold wind blows from the north,
and ice forms on the water,
settling on every watery expanse,
and water puts it on like a breastplate.
He swallows up the mountains and scorches the desert,
like a fire he consumes the vegetation.
But the mist heals everything in good time,
after the heat falls the reviving dew.
By his own resourcefulness he has tamed the abyss,
and planted it with islands.
Those who sail the sea tell of its dangers,
their accounts fill our ears with amazement:
for there too there are strange and wonderful works,
animals of every kind and huge sea creatures.
Thanks to him all ends well,
and all things hold together by means of his word.
We could say much more and still fall short;
to put it concisely, ‘He is all.’
Where shall we find sufficient power to glorify him,
since he is the Great One, above all his works,
the awe-inspiring Lord, stupendously great,
and wonderful in his power?
Exalt the Lord in your praises
as high as you may – still he surpasses you.
Exert all your strength when you exalt him,
do not grow tired – you will never come to the end.
Who has ever seen him to give a description?
Who can glorify him as he deserves?
Many mysteries remain even greater than these,
for we have seen only a few of his works,
the Lord himself having made all things –
and having given wisdom to devout men.


Praise the God of heaven for all men to hear,
and thank him for the mercy he has shown you.

Worship him, sing his praise,
tell of all his marvelous works,
and thank him for the mercy he has shown you.

Second Reading
From the Life of Saint Anthony
by Saint Athanasius, bishop

Saint Antony receives his vocation

When Antony was about eighteen or twenty years old, his parents died, leaving him with an only sister.
He cared for her as she was very young, and also looked after their home.

Not six months after his parents’ death, as he was on his way to church for his usual visit, he began to think of how the apostles had left everything and followed the Savior, and also of those mentioned in the book of Acts who had sold their possessions and brought the apostles the money for distribution to the needy. He reflected too on the great hope stored up in heaven for such as these. This was all in his mind when, entering the church just as the Gospel was being read, he heard the Lord’s words to the rich man: If you want to be perfect, go and sell all you have and give the money to the poor – you will have riches in heaven. 
Then come and follow me.

It seemed to Antony that it was God who had brought the saints to his mind and that the words of the Gospel had been spoken directly to him. Immediately he left the church and gave away to the villagers all the property he had inherited, about 200 acres of very beautiful and fertile land, so that it would cause no distraction to his sister and himself. He sold all his other possessions as well, giving to the poor the considerable sum of money he collected. However, to care for his sister he retained a few things.

The next time he went to church he heard the Lord say in the Gospel: Do not be anxious about tomorrow. Without a moment’s hesitation he went out and gave the poor all that he had left. He placed his sister in the care of some well-known and trustworthy virgins and arranged for her to be brought up in the convent. Then he gave himself up to the ascetic life, not far from his own home. He kept a careful watch over himself and practiced great austerity. He did manual work because he had heard the words: 
If anyone will not work, do not let him eat. He spent some of his earnings on bread and the rest he gave to the poor.

Having learned that we should always be praying, even when we are by ourselves, he prayed without ceasing. 
Indeed, he was so attentive when Scripture was read that nothing escaped him and because he retained all he heard, 
his memory served him in place of books.

Seeing the kind of life he lived,
the villagers and all the good men he knew called him the friend of God,
and they loved him as both son and brother.

If you wish to be perfect,
go and sell what you own and give the money to the poor,
and you will have treasure in heaven;
then come, follow me.

None of you can be my disciple unless he give up all his possessions;
then come, follow me.

Let us pray.

Lord God, you bestowed on Saint Antony
the grace of serving you in the wilderness.
Grant that through his intercession
we may deny ourselves and love you above all things.
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 praise the Lord.
– Thanks be to God.