Tuesday, October 21, 2014



Hail Mary,
poor and humble Woman,
Blessed by the Most High!
Virgin of hope,
dawn of a new era,
We join in your song of praise,
to celebrate the Lord’s mercy,
to proclaim the coming of the Kingdom and the full liberation of humanity.

Hail Mary,
lowly handmaid of the Lord,
Glorious Mother of Christ!
Faithful Virgin,
holy dwelling-place of the Word,
Teach us to persevere in listening to the Word,
and to be docile to the voice of the Spirit,
attentive to his promptings in the depths of our conscience and to his manifestations in the events of history.

Hail Mary,
Woman of sorrows,
Mother of the living!
Virgin spouse beneath the Cross,
the new Eve,
Be our guide along the paths of the world.
Teach us to experience and to spread the love of Christ,
to stand with you before the innumerable crosses on which your Son is still crucified.

Hail Mary,
woman of faith,
First of the disciples!
Virgin Mother of the Church,
help us always to account for the hope that is in us,
with trust in human goodness and the Father’s love.
Teach us to build up the world beginning from within:
in the depths of silence and prayer,
in the joy of fraternal love,
in the unique fruitfulness of the Cross.

Holy Mary,
Mother of believers,
Our Lady of Lourdes,
pray for us.


Tuesday of the Twenty-ninth Week in Ordinary Time

EPH 2:12-22

Brothers and sisters:

You were at that time without Christ,
alienated from the community of Israel
and strangers to the covenants of promise,
without hope and without God in the world.
But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off
have become near by the Blood of Christ.

For he is our peace, he made both one
and broke down the dividing wall of enmity, through his Flesh,
abolishing the law with its commandments and legal claims,
that he might create in himself one new person in place of the two,
thus establishing peace,
and might reconcile both with God,
in one Body, through the cross,
putting that enmity to death by it.
He came and preached peace to you who were far off
and peace to those who were near,
for through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father.

So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners,
but you are fellow citizens with the holy ones
and members of the household of God,
built upon the foundation of the Apostles and prophets,
with Christ Jesus himself as the capstone.
Through him the whole structure is held together
and grows into a temple sacred in the Lord;
in him you also are being built together
into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.

Responsorial Psalm
PS 85:9AB-10, 11-12, 13-14

R. The Lord speaks of peace to his people.

I will hear what God proclaims;
the LORD–for he proclaims peace.
Near indeed is his salvation to those who fear him,
glory dwelling in our land.

R. The Lord speaks of peace to his people.

Kindness and truth shall meet;
justice and peace shall kiss.
Truth shall spring out of the earth,
and justice shall look down from heaven.

R. The Lord speaks of peace to his people.

The LORD himself will give his benefits;
our land shall yield its increase.
Justice shall walk before him,
and salvation, along the way of his steps.

R. The Lord speaks of peace to his people.

LK 12:35-38

Jesus said to his disciples:

“Gird your loins and light your lamps
and be like servants who await their master’s return from a wedding,
ready to open immediately when he comes and knocks.
Blessed are those servants
whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival.
Amen, I say to you, he will gird himself,
have them recline at table, and proceed to wait on them.
And should he come in the second or third watch
and find them prepared in this way,
blessed are those servants.”

October 21

St. Hilarion (c. 291-371)

Despite his best efforts to live in prayer and solitude, today’s saint found it difficult to achieve his deepest desire. People were naturally drawn to Hilarion as a source of spiritual wisdom and peace. He had reached such fame by the time of his death that his body had to be secretly removed so that a shrine would not be built in his honor. Instead, he was buried in his home village.

St. Hilarion the Great, as he is sometimes called, was born in Palestine. After his conversion to Christianity he spent some time with St. Anthony of Egypt, another holy man drawn to solitude. Hilarion lived a life of hardship and simplicity in the desert, where he also experienced spiritual dryness that included temptations to despair. At the same time, miracles were attributed to him.

As his fame grew, a small group of disciples wanted to follow Hilarion. He began a series of journeys to find a place where he could live away from the world. He finally settled on Cyprus, where he died in 371 at about age 80.

Hilarion is celebrated as the founder of monasticism in Palestine.
Much of his fame flows from the biography of him written by St. Jerome.

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

Invitatory Psalm
Psalm 94 (95)

The Lord is a great king:
come, let us adore him.

Come, let us rejoice in the Lord,
let us acclaim God our salvation.
Let us come before him proclaiming our thanks,
let us acclaim him with songs.

The Lord is a great king:
come, let us adore him.

For the Lord is a great God,
a king above all gods.
For he holds the depths of the earth in his hands,
and the peaks of the mountains are his.
For the sea is his: he made it;
and his hands formed the dry land.

The Lord is a great king:
come, let us adore him.

Come, let us worship and bow down,
bend the knee before the Lord who made us;
for he himself is our God and we are his flock,
the sheep that follow his hand.

The Lord is a great king:
come, let us adore him.

If only, today, you would listen to his voice:
“Do not harden your hearts
as you did at Meribah,
on the day of Massah in the desert,
when your fathers tested me –
they put me to the test,
although they had seen my works.”

The Lord is a great king:
come, let us adore him.

“For forty years they wearied me,
that generation.
I said: their hearts are wandering,
they do not know my paths.
I swore in my anger:
they will never enter my place of rest.”

The Lord is a great king:
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.

The Lord is a great king:
come, let us adore him.


Worship, glory, praise and honor
To our God, high-throned above:
We, with many generations
Join to praise thy name of love.
In the scriptures, by the Spirit,
May we see the Saviour’s face,
Hear his word and heed his calling,
Know his will and grow in grace.

Psalm 9B (10)

The Lord will protect the rights of the oppressed.

With what purpose, Lord, do you stay away,
hide yourself in time of need and trouble?
The wicked in their pride persecute the weak,
trap them in the plots they have devised.
The sinner glories in his desires,
the miser congratulates himself.
The sinner in his arrogance rejects the Lord:
“there is no God, no retribution.”
This is what he thinks
– and all goes well for him.
Your judgements are far beyond his comprehension:
he despises all who stand against him.
The sinner says to himself: “I will stand firm;
nothing can touch me, from generation to generation.”
His mouth is full of malice and deceit,
under his tongue hide trouble and distress.
He lies in ambush by the villages,
he kills the innocent in some secret place.
He watches the weak,
he hides like a lion in its lair, and makes plans.
He plans to rob the weak,
lure him to his trap and rob him.
He rushes in, makes a dive,
and the poor victim is caught.
For he has said to himself, “God has forgotten.
He is not watching, he will never see.”

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.

The Lord will protect the rights of the oppressed.

Psalm 9B (10)

Lord, you have seen our trouble and our sorrow.

Rise up, Lord, raise your hand!
Do not forget the weak.
Why does the wicked man spurn God?
Because he says to himself, “you will not take revenge.”
But you do see: you see the trouble and the pain,
and then you take things into your own hands.
The weak fall to your care,
and you are the help of the orphan.
Break the arms of the sinner and evil-doer:
seek out wickedness until there is no more to be found.
The Lord is King for ever and for ever.
The Gentiles have perished from his land.
You have heard the prayer of the weak, Lord,
and you will strengthen their hearts.
You will lend your ear to the pleas of the orphans and the helpless,
so mere mortals can frighten them no longer.

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, you have seen our trouble and our sorrow.

Psalm 11 (12)
A prayer against the proud

The words of the Lord are words without alloy,
silver from the furnace, seven times refined.

Save me, Lord, for the good men are all gone:
there is no-one to be trusted among the sons of men.
Neighbour speaks falsehood to neighbour:
with lying lips and crooked hearts they speak.
Let the Lord condemn all lying lips,
all boastful tongues.
They say “Our tongues will make us great,
our lips are ours, we have no master.”
“On account of the sufferings of the poor,
the groans of the weak, I will rise up,” says the Lord.
“I will bring to safety the one whom men despise.”
The words of the Lord are pure words,
silver tried by fire, freed from dross,
silver seven times refined.
You, Lord, will help us
and guard us from now to all eternity –
while the wicked walk round outside,
where the vilest are most honoured of the children of men.

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.

The words of the Lord are words without alloy,
silver from the furnace, seven times refined.

The Lord will guide the humble on the right path.
– He will teach his ways to the meek.

First Reading
Esther 4:1-17

When Mordecai learned what had happened, he tore his garments and put on sackcloth and ashes. Then he went right through the city, wailing loud and bitterly, until he arrived in front of the Chancellery, which no one clothed in sackcloth was allowed to enter. And in every province, no sooner had the royal edict been read than among the Jews there was great mourning, 
fasting, weeping and wailing, and many lay on sackcloth and ashes.

When Queen Esther’s maids and eunuchs came and told her, she was overcome with grief. She sent clothes for Mordecai to put on instead of his sackcloth, but he refused them. Then Esther summoned Hathach, a eunuch whom the king had appointed to wait on her, and ordered him to go to Mordecai and enquire what was the matter and why he was acting in this way.

Hathach went out to Mordecai, who was still in the city square in front of the Chancellery, and Mordecai told him what had happened to him personally, and also about the sum of money which Haman had offered to pay into the royal treasury as compensation for the destruction of the Jews. He also gave him a copy of the edict of extermination published in Susa for him to show Esther for her information, with the message that she was to go to the king and implore his favour and plead with him for her people. ‘Remember your humbler circumstances,’ he said ‘when you were fed by my hand. Since Haman, the second person in the realm, has petitioned the king for our deaths, invoke the Lord, speak to the king for us and save us from death!’

Hathach came back and told Esther what Mordecai had said; and she replied with the following message for Mordecai, ‘All the king’s servants and the people of his provinces know that for a man or woman who approaches the king in the inner court without being summoned there is one penalty: death, unless, by pointing his golden sceptre towards him, the king grants him his life. 
And I have not been summoned to the king for the last thirty days.’

These words of Esther were reported to Mordecai, who sent back the following reply, ‘Do not suppose that, because you are in the king’s palace, you are going to be the one Jew to escape. No; if you persist in remaining silent at such a time, relief and deliverance will come to the Jews from another place, but both you and the House of your father will perish. Who knows? 
Perhaps you have come to the throne for just such a time as this.’

Whereupon Esther sent this reply to Mordecai, ‘Go and assemble all the Jews now in Susa and fast for me. Do not eat or drink day or night for three days. For my part, I and my maids will keep the same fast, after which I shall go to the king in spite of the law; and if I perish, I perish.’ Mordecai went away and carried out Esther’s instructions.


Never have I relied on anyone but you alone,
O God of Israel.
Even though you be angry,
yet will you be merciful and forgive the offences of those who suffer misfortune.

Lord God of heaven and earth,
relieve our distress.
Even though you be angry,
yet will you be merciful and forgive the offences of those who suffer misfortune.

Second Reading
A letter to Proba
by St Augustine

On the Lord's Prayer

We need to use words so that we may remind ourselves to consider carefully what we are asking, 
not so that we may think we can instruct the Lord or prevail on him.

Thus, when we say: Hallowed be your name, we are reminding ourselves to desire that his name, which in fact is always holy, should also be considered holy among men. I mean that it should not be held in contempt. But this is a help for men, not for God.

And as for our saying: Your kingdom come, it will surely come whether we will it or not. 
But we are stirring up our desires for the kingdom so that it can come to us and we can deserve to reign there.

When we say: Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven, 
we are asking him to make us obedient so that his will may be done in us as it is done in heaven by his angels.

When we say: Give us this day our daily bread, in saying this day we mean “in this world.” Here we ask for a sufficiency by specifying the most important part of it; that is, we use the word “bread” to stand for everything. Or else we are asking for the sacrament of the faithful, which is necessary in this world, 
not to gain temporal happiness but to gain the happiness that is everlasting.

When we say: Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us, 
we are reminding ourselves of what we must ask and what we must do in order to be worthy in turn to receive.

When we say: Lead us not into temptation, we are reminding ourselves to ask that his help may not depart from us; 
otherwise we could be seduced and consent to some temptation, or despair and yield to it.

When we say: Deliver us from evil, we are reminding ourselves to reflect on the fact that we do not yet enjoy the state of blessedness in which we shall suffer no evil. This is the final petition contained in the Lord’s Prayer, and it has a wide application. In this petition the Christian can utter his cries of sorrow, in it he can shed his tears, and through it he can begin, 
continue and conclude his prayer, whatever the distress in which he finds himself. 
Yes, it was very appropriate that all these truths should be entrusted to us to remember in these very words.

Whatever be the other words we may prefer to say (words which the one praying chooses so that his disposition may become clearer to himself or which he simply adopts so that his disposition may be intensified), we say nothing that is not contained in the Lord’s Prayer, provided of course we are praying in a correct and proper way. But if anyone says something which is incompatible with this prayer of the Gospel, he is praying in the flesh, even if he is not praying sinfully. And yet I do not know how this could be termed anything but sinful, since those who are born again through the Spirit ought to pray only in the Spirit.


May the Lord hear your prayers and be reconciled to you.
May the Lord our God not abandon you in time of evil.

May he give you all a heart to worship him and do his will.
May the Lord our God not abandon you in time of evil.

Let us pray.

Almighty, ever-living God,
make us ever obey you willingly and promptly.
Teach us how to serve you
with sincere and upright hearts
in every sphere of life.
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.