Thursday, April 17, 2014

PRAYER OF THE DAY

Litany of the Most Blessed Sacrament

Lord, have mercy,
Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy,
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy,
Lord, have mercy.
Christ, hear us,
Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us,
Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of Heaven,
have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world,
have mercy on us.
God, the Holy Spirit,
have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God,
have mercy on us.

O Living Bread, Who from Heaven descended,
have mercy on us.
Hidden God and Savior,
have mercy on us.
Grain of the elect,
have mercy on us.
Vine sprouting forth virgins,
have mercy on us.
Wholesome Bread and delicacy of kings,
have mercy on us.
Perpetual sacrifice,
have mercy on us.
Clean oblation,
have mercy on us.
Lamb without spot,
have mercy on us.
Most pure feast,
have mercy on us.
Food of Angels,
have mercy on us.
Hidden manna,
have mercy on us.
Memorial of God's wonders,
have mercy on us.
Super substantial Bread,
have mercy on us.
Word made flesh, dwelling in us,
have mercy on us.
Holy Victim, have
mercy on us.

O Cup of blessing,
have mercy on us.
O Mystery of faith,
have mercy on us.
O Most high and venerable Sacrament,
have mercy on us.
O Most holy of all sacrifices,
have mercy on us.
O True propitiatory Sacrifice for the living and the dead,
have mercy on us.
O Heavenly antidote, by which we are preserved from sin,
have mercy on us.
O stupendous miracle above all others,
have mercy on us.
O most holy Commemoration of the Passion of Christ,
have mercy on us.
O Gift transcending all abundance,
have mercy on us.
O extraordinary memorial of Divine love,
have mercy on us.
O affluence of Divine largess,
have mercy on us.
O most holy and august mystery,
have mercy on us.

Medicine of immortality,
have mercy on us.
Awesome and life-giving Sacrament,
have mercy on us.
Unbloody Sacrifice,
have mercy on us.
Food and guest,
have mercy on us.
Sweetest banquet at which the Angels serve,
have mercy on us.
Bond of love,
have mercy on us.
Offering and oblation,
have mercy on us.
Spiritual sweetness tasted in its own fountain,
have mercy on us.
Refreshment of holy souls,
have mercy on us.
Viaticum of those dying in the Lord,
have mercy on us.
Pledge of future glory,
have mercy on us.

Be merciful, spare us,
O Lord.
Be merciful, graciously hear us,
O Lord.

From the unworthy reception of Thy Body and Blood,
deliver us, O Lord.
From passions of the flesh,
deliver us, O Lord.
From the concupiscence of the eyes,
deliver us, O Lord.
From pride,
deliver us, O Lord.
From every occasion of sin,
deliver us, O Lord.
Through that desire, with which Thou desiredst to eat the Passover with Thy disciples,
deliver us, O Lord.
Through that profound humility with which Thou didst wash Thy disciples' feet,
deliver us, O Lord.
Through that most ardent love, with which Thou instituted this Divine Sacrament,
deliver us, O Lord.
Through the most precious Blood, which Thou hast left for us upon the altar,
deliver us, O Lord.
Through those Five Wounds of Thy most holy Body, which was given up for us,
deliver us, O Lord.

Sinners we are,
we beseech Thee, hear us.
That Thou wouldst graciously preserve and augment the faith, reverence,
and devotion in us towards this admirable Sacrament,
we beseech Thee, hear us.
That Thou wouldst graciously lead us through the true confession of
we beseech Thee, hear us.
our sins to a frequent reception of the Eucharist,
we beseech Thee, hear us.
That Thou wouldst graciously free us from every heresy, falsehood, and blindness of the heart,
we beseech Thee, hear us.
That Thou wouldst graciously impart to us the Heavenly and precious fruits of this most Holy Sacrament,
we beseech Thee, hear us.
That Thou wouldst graciously protect and strengthen us in our hour of death with this Heavenly Viaticum,
we beseech Thee, hear us.
O Son of God,
we beseech Thee, hear us.

Lamb of God, Who taketh away the sins of the world,
spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who taketh away the sins of the world,
graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who taketh away the sins of the world,
have mercy on us, O Lord.
Christ, hear us,
Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us,
Christ, graciously hear us.
Lord, have mercy,
Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy,
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy,
Lord, have mercy.

Pray 1 Our Father and 1 Hail Mary

V. Thou didst furnish them with Bread from Heaven, Alleluia.
R. Having in it every delight.

Let us pray:

O God, Who under a marvelous Sacrament has left us a memorial of Thy Passion;
grant us; we beseech Thee;
so to venerate the sacred mysteries of Thy Body and Blood,
that we may ever perceive within us the fruit of Thy Redemption.
Thou, Who livest and reignest forever and ever.

Amen.

DAILY MASS READINGS

Holy Thursday
Evening Mass of the Lord's Supper

Reading 1
EX 12:1-8, 11-14

The LORD said to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt,
“This month shall stand at the head of your calendar;
you shall reckon it the first month of the year.
Tell the whole community of Israel:
On the tenth of this month every one of your families
must procure for itself a lamb, one apiece for each household.
If a family is too small for a whole lamb,
it shall join the nearest household in procuring one
and shall share in the lamb
in proportion to the number of persons who partake of it.
The lamb must be a year-old male and without blemish.
You may take it from either the sheep or the goats.
You shall keep it until the fourteenth day of this month,
and then, with the whole assembly of Israel present,
it shall be slaughtered during the evening twilight.
They shall take some of its blood
and apply it to the two doorposts and the lintel
of every house in which they partake of the lamb.
That same night they shall eat its roasted flesh
with unleavened bread and bitter herbs.

“This is how you are to eat it:
with your loins girt, sandals on your feet and your staff in hand,
you shall eat like those who are in flight.
It is the Passover of the LORD.
For on this same night I will go through Egypt,
striking down every firstborn of the land, both man and beast,
and executing judgment on all the gods of Egypt—I, the LORD!
But the blood will mark the houses where you are.
Seeing the blood, I will pass over you;
thus, when I strike the land of Egypt,
no destructive blow will come upon you.

“This day shall be a memorial feast for you,
which all your generations shall celebrate
with pilgrimage to the LORD, as a perpetual institution.”


Responsorial Psalm
PS 116:12-13, 15-16BC, 17-18

R. Our blessing-cup is a communion with the Blood of Christ.

How shall I make a return to the LORD
for all the good he has done for me?
The cup of salvation I will take up,
and I will call upon the name of the LORD.

R. Our blessing-cup is a communion with the Blood of Christ.

Precious in the eyes of the LORD
is the death of his faithful ones.
I am your servant, the son of your handmaid;
you have loosed my bonds.

R. Our blessing-cup is a communion with the Blood of Christ.

To you will I offer sacrifice of thanksgiving,
and I will call upon the name of the LORD.
My vows to the LORD I will pay
in the presence of all his people.

R. Our blessing-cup is a communion with the Blood of Christ.


Reading 2
1 COR 11:23-26

Brothers and sisters:

I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you,
that the Lord Jesus, on the night he was handed over,
took bread, and, after he had given thanks,
broke it and said, “This is my body that is for you.
Do this in remembrance of me.”
In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying,
“This cup is the new covenant in my blood.
Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.”
For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup,
you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes.


Gospel
JN 13:1-15

Before the feast of Passover, 
Jesus knew that his hour had come
to pass from this world to the Father.
He loved his own in the world and he loved them to the end.
The devil had already induced Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot, to hand him over.
So, during supper,
fully aware that the Father had put everything into his power
and that he had come from God and was returning to God,
he rose from supper and took off his outer garments.
He took a towel and tied it around his waist.
Then he poured water into a basin
and began to wash the disciples’ feet
and dry them with the towel around his waist.
He came to Simon Peter, who said to him,
“Master, are you going to wash my feet?”

Jesus answered and said to him,

“What I am doing, you do not understand now,
but you will understand later.”

Peter said to him, “You will never wash my feet.”

Jesus answered him,

“Unless I wash you, you will have no inheritance with me.”

Simon Peter said to him,
“Master, then not only my feet, but my hands and head as well.”

Jesus said to him,

“Whoever has bathed has no need except to have his feet washed,
for he is clean all over;
so you are clean, but not all.”

For he knew who would betray him;
for this reason, he said,

“Not all of you are clean.”

So when he had washed their feet
and put his garments back on and reclined at table again,
he said to them,

“Do you realize what I have done for you?
You call me ‘teacher’ and ‘master,’ and rightly so, for indeed I am.
If I, therefore, the master and teacher, have washed your feet,
you ought to wash one another’s feet.
I have given you a model to follow,
so that as I have done for you, you should also do.”




SAINT OF THE DAY

April 17

St. Benedict Joseph Labre (d. 1783)

Benedict Joseph Labre was truly eccentric, one of God's special little ones. Born in France and the eldest of 18 children, he studied under his uncle, a parish priest. Because of poor health and a lack of suitable academic preparation he was unsuccessful in his attempts to enter the religious life. Then, at 16 years of age, a profound change took place. 
Benedict lost his desire to study and gave up all thoughts of the priesthood, 
much to the consternation of his relatives.

He became a pilgrim, traveling from one great shrine to another, living off alms. He wore the rags of a beggar and shared his food with the poor. Filled with the love of God and neighbor, Benedict had special devotion to the Blessed Mother and to the Blessed Sacrament. In Rome, where he lived in the Colosseum for a time, he was called "the poor man of the Forty Hours Devotion" and "the beggar of Rome." The people accepted his ragged appearance better than he did. 
His excuse to himself was that "our comfort is not in this world."

On the last day of his life, April 16, 1783, Benedict Joseph dragged himself to a church in Rome and prayed there for two hours before he collapsed, dying peacefully in a nearby house. Immediately after his death the people proclaimed him a saint.

He was officially proclaimed a saint by Pope Leo XIII at canonization ceremonies in 1883.


OFFICE OF READINGS

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

Invitatory Psalm
Psalm 99 (100)

Christ the Lord was tempted and suffered for us:
come, let us adore him.

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

Christ the Lord was tempted and suffered for us:
come, let us adore him.

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

Christ the Lord was tempted and suffered for us:
come, let us adore him.

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 forever,
his faithfulness through all the ages.

Christ the Lord was tempted and suffered for us:
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.
Amen.

Christ the Lord was tempted and suffered for us:
come, let us adore him.


Hymn

Sing, my tongue, the glorious battle,
sing the last, the dread affray;
o’er the cross, the victor’s trophy,
sound the high triumphal lay,
how, the pains of death enduring,
earth’s Redeemer won the day.
When at length the appointed fulness
of the sacred time was come,
he was sent, the world’s Creator,
from the Father’s heavenly home,
and was found in human fashion,
offspring of the virgin’s womb.
Now the thirty years are ended
which on earth he willed to see.
Willingly he meets his passion,
born to set his people free:
on the cross the Lamb is lifted,
there the sacrifice to be.
There the nails and spear he suffers,
vinegar and gall and reed.
From his sacred body pierc├Ęd
blood and water both proceed:
precious flood, which all creation
from the stain of sin hath freed.
Faithful Cross, above all other,
one and only noble Tree.
none in foliage, none in blossom,
none in fruit thy peer may be.
Sweet the wood and sweet the iron,
and thy load, most sweet is he.
Bend, O lofty Tree, thy branches,
thy too rigid sinews bend;
and awhile the stubborn harshness,
which thy birth bestowed, suspend;
and the limbs of heaven’s high Monarch
gently on thine arms extend.
Thou alone wast counted worthy
this world’s ransom to sustain,
that a shipwrecked race for ever
might a port of refuge gain,
with the sacred Blood anointed
of the Lamb for sinners slain.
Praise and honour to the Father,
praise and honour to the Son,
praise and honour to the Spirit,
ever Three and ever One:
One in might and One in glory,
while eternal ages run.


Psalm 68 (69)
I am consumed with zeal for your house

I am wearied with all my crying as I await my God.

Save me, O God,
for the waters have come up to my neck.
I am stuck in bottomless mud;
I am adrift in deep waters
and the flood is sweeping me away.
I am exhausted with crying out, my throat is parched,
my eyes are failing as I look out for my God.
Those who hate me for no reason
are more than the hairs of my head.
They are strong, my persecutors, my lying enemies:
they make me give back things I never took.
God, you know my weakness:
my crimes are not hidden from you.
Let my fate not put to shame those who trust in you,
Lord, Lord of hosts.
Let them not be dismayed on my account,
those who seek you, God of Israel.
For it is for your sake that I am taunted
and covered in confusion:
I have become a stranger to my own brothers,
a wanderer in the eyes of my mother’s children –
because zeal for your house is consuming me,
and the taunts of those who hate you
fall upon my head.
I have humbled my soul with fasting
and they reproach me for it.
I have made sackcloth my clothing
and they make me a byword.
The idlers at the gates speak against me;
for drinkers of wine, I am the butt of their 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.
Amen.

I am wearied with all my crying as I await my God.


Psalm 68 (69)

For food they gave me poison,
and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.

But I turn my prayer to you, Lord,
at the acceptable time, my God.
In your great kindness, hear me,
and rescue me with your faithful help.
Tear me from the mire, before I become stuck;
tear me from those who hate me;
tear me from the depths of the waters.
Do not let the waves overwhelm me;
do not let the deep waters swallow me;
do not let the well’s mouth engulf me.
Hear me, Lord, for you are kind and good.
In your abundant mercy, look upon me.
Do not turn your face from your servant:
I am suffering, so hurry to answer me.
Come to my soul and deliver it,
rescue me from my enemies’ attacks.
You know how I am taunted and ashamed;
how I am thrown into confusion.
You can see all those who are troubling me.
Reproach has shattered my heart – I am sick.
I looked for sympathy, but none came;
I looked for a consoler but did not find one.
They gave me bitterness to eat;
when I was thirsty, they gave me vinegar to drink.

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.

For food they gave me poison,
and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.


Psalm 68 (69)

Seek the Lord, and he will give life to your soul.

I am weak and I suffer,
but your help, O God, will sustain me.
I will praise the name of God in song
and proclaim his greatness with praises.
This will please the Lord more than oxen,
than cattle with their horns and hooves.
Let the humble see and rejoice.
Seek the Lord, and your heart shall live,
for the Lord has heard the needy
and has not despised his captive people.
Let heaven and earth praise him,
the seas and all that swims in them.
For the Lord will make Zion safe
and build up the cities of Judah:
there they will live, the land will be theirs.
The seed of his servants will inherit the land,
and those who love his name will dwell there.

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.

Seek the Lord, and he will give life to your soul.


When I am lifted up from the earth
– I shall draw all things to myself.


First Reading
Hebrews 4:14-5:10

Since in Jesus, the Son of God, we have the supreme high priest who has gone through to the highest heaven, we must never let go of the faith that we have professed. For it is not as if we had a high priest who was incapable of feeling our weaknesses with us; but we have one who has been tempted in every way that we are, though he is without sin. Let us be confident, then, 
in approaching the throne of grace, that we shall have mercy from him and find grace when we are in need of help.

Every high priest has been taken out of mankind and is appointed to act for men in their relations with God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins; and so he can sympathise with those who are ignorant or uncertain because he too lives in the limitations of weakness. That is why he has to make sin offerings for himself as well as for the people. No one takes this honour on himself, but each one is called by God, as Aaron was. Nor did Christ give himself the glory of becoming high priest, but he had it from the one who said to him: You are my son, today I have become your father, and in another text: You are a priest of the order of Melchizedek, and for ever. During his life on earth, he offered up prayer and entreaty, aloud and in silent tears, to the one who had the power to save him out of death, and he submitted so humbly that his prayer was heard. Although he was Son, 
he learnt to obey through suffering; but having been made perfect, 
he became for all who obey him the source of eternal salvation 
and was acclaimed by God with the title of high priest of the order of Melchizedek.


Responsory

Although he was the son of God,
Christ learnt to obey through suffering,
and he became for all who obey him the source of eternal salvation.

During his life on earth,
he offered up prayer aloud,
and he submitted so humbly that his prayer was heard,
and he became for all who obey him the source of eternal salvation.


Second Reading
From an Easter homily
by Saint Melito of Sardis, bishop

The Lamb that was slain has delivered us from death and given us life

There was much proclaimed by the prophets about the mystery of the Passover: 
that mystery is Christ, and to him be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

For the sake of suffering humanity he came down from heaven to earth, clothed himself in that humanity in the Virgin’s womb, and was born a man. Having then a body capable of suffering, he took the pain of fallen man upon himself; he triumphed over the diseases of soul and body that were its cause, and by his Spirit, which was incapable of dying, 
he dealt man’s destroyer, death, a fatal blow.

He was led forth like a lamb; he was slaughtered like a sheep. He ransomed us from our servitude to the world, as he had ransomed Israel from the hand of Egypt; he freed us from our slavery to the devil, as he had freed Israel from the hand of Pharaoh. He sealed our souls with his own Spirit, and the members of our body with his own blood.

He is the One who covered death with shame and cast the devil into mourning, as Moses cast Pharaoh into mourning. He is the One who smote sin and robbed iniquity of offspring, as Moses robbed the Egyptians of their offspring. He is the One who brought us out of slavery into freedom, out of darkness into light, out of death into life, out of tyranny into an eternal kingdom; 
who made us a new priesthood, a people chosen to be his own for ever. He is the Passover that is our salvation.

It is he who endured every kind of suffering in all those who foreshadowed him. In Abel he was slain, in Isaac bound, in Jacob exiled, in Joseph sold, in Moses exposed to die. He was sacrificed in the Passover lamb, 
persecuted in David, dishonoured in the prophets.

It is he who was made man of the Virgin, he who was hung on the tree; it is he who was buried in the earth, raised from the dead, and taken up to the heights of heaven. He is the mute lamb, the slain lamb, the lamb born of Mary, the fair ewe. He was seized from the flock, dragged off to be slaughtered, sacrificed in the evening, and buried at night. On the tree no bone of his was broken; in the earth his body knew no decay. He is the One who rose from the dead, and who raised man from the depths of the tomb.


Responsory

All men have sinned and are far away from God’s saving presence,
but by the free gift of God’s grace they are all redeemed through Christ Jesus,
who sets them free.
God offered him so that by his death he should become the means by which men’s sins are forgiven,
through their faith in him.

Look, there is the Lamb of God:
it is he who takes away the sin of the world.
God offered him so that by his death he should become the means by which men’s sins are forgiven,
through their faith in him.

Let us pray.

Love of you with our whole heart, Lord God, is holiness.
Increase, then, your gifts of divine grace in us,
so that, as in your Son’s death,
you made us hope for what we believe,
you may likewise, in his resurrection,
make us come to you, our final end.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God for ever and ever.
Amen.

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