Tuesday, July 14, 2015

MEMORIAL OF SAINT KATERI TEKAKWITHA


Collect

O God, 
who desired the Virgin Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha
to flower among Native Americans
in a life of innocence,
grant, through her intercession,
that when all are gathered into your Church
from every nation, tribe and tongue,
they may magnify you
in a single canticle of praise.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.

Amen.



Memorial of Saint Kateri Tekakwitha, Virgin

Reading
EX 2:1-15A

A certain man of the house of Levi married a Levite woman,
who conceived and bore a son.
Seeing that he was a goodly child, she hid him for three months.
When she could hide him no longer, she took a papyrus basket,
daubed it with bitumen and pitch,
and putting the child in it,
placed it among the reeds on the river bank.
His sister stationed herself at a distance
to find out what would happen to him.

Pharaoh’s daughter came down to the river to bathe,
while her maids walked along the river bank.
Noticing the basket among the reeds, she sent her handmaid to fetch it.
On opening it, she looked, and lo, there was a baby boy, crying!
She was moved with pity for him and said,
“It is one of the Hebrews’ children.”
Then his sister asked Pharaoh’s daughter,
“Shall I go and call one of the Hebrew women
to nurse the child for you?”
“Yes, do so,” she answered.
So the maiden went and called the child’s own mother.
Pharaoh’s daughter said to her,
“Take this child and nurse it for me, and I will repay you.”
The woman therefore took the child and nursed it.
When the child grew, she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter,
who adopted him as her son and called him Moses;
for she said, “I drew him out of the water.”

On one occasion, after Moses had grown up,
when he visited his kinsmen and witnessed their forced labor,
he saw an Egyptian striking a Hebrew, one of his own kinsmen.
Looking about and seeing no one,
he slew the Egyptian and hid him in the sand.
The next day he went out again, and now two Hebrews were fighting!
So he asked the culprit,
“Why are you striking your fellow Hebrew?”
But the culprit replied,
“Who has appointed you ruler and judge over us?
Are you thinking of killing me as you killed the Egyptian?”
Then Moses became afraid and thought,
“The affair must certainly be known.”

Pharaoh, too, heard of the affair and sought to put Moses to death.
But Moses fled from him and stayed in the land of Midian.


Responsorial Psalm
PS 69:3, 14, 30-31, 33-34

R. Turn to the Lord in your need, and you will live.

I am sunk in the abysmal swamp
where there is no foothold;
I have reached the watery depths;
the flood overwhelms me.

R. Turn to the Lord in your need, and you will live.

But I pray to you, O LORD,
for the time of your favor, O God!
In your great kindness answer me
with your constant help.

R. Turn to the Lord in your need, and you will live.

But I am afflicted and in pain;
let your saving help, O God, protect me;
I will praise the name of God in song,
and I will glorify him with thanksgiving.

R. Turn to the Lord in your need, and you will live.

“See, you lowly ones, and be glad;
you who seek God, may your hearts revive!
For the LORD hears the poor,
and his own who are in bonds he spurns not.”

R. Turn to the Lord in your need, and you will live.


Alleluia
PS 95:8

R. Alleluia, alleluia.

If today you hear his voice,
harden not your hearts.

R. Alleluia, alleluia.


Gospel
MT 11:20-24

Jesus began to reproach the towns
where most of his mighty deeds had been done,
since they had not repented.

“Woe to you, Chorazin!
Woe to you, Bethsaida!
For if the mighty deeds done in your midst
had been done in Tyre and Sidon,
they would long ago have repented in sackcloth and ashes.
But I tell you, it will be more tolerable
for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you.
And as for you, Capernaum:

Will you be exalted to heaven?
You will go down to the netherworld.

For if the mighty deeds done in your midst had been done in Sodom,
it would have remained until this day.
But I tell you, it will be more tolerable
for the land of Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.”



July 14

St. Kateri Tekakwitha (1656-1680)

The blood of martyrs is the seed of saints. Nine years after the Jesuits Isaac Jogues and John de Br├ębeuf (October 19) were tomahawked by Iroquois warriors, a baby girl was born near the place of their martyrdom, Auriesville, New York.

Her mother was a Christian Algonquin, taken captive by the Iroquois and given as wife to the chief of the Mohawk clan, the boldest and fiercest of the Five Nations. When she was four, Kateri lost her parents and little brother in a smallpox epidemic that left her disfigured and half blind. She was adopted by an uncle, who succeeded her father as chief. He hated the coming of the Blackrobes (Jesuit missionaries), but could do nothing to them because a peace treaty with the French required their presence in villages with Christian captives. She was moved by the words of three Blackrobes who lodged with her uncle, but fear of him kept her from seeking instruction. She refused to marry a Mohawk brave and at 19 finally got the courage to take the step of converting. She was baptized with the name Kateri (Catherine) on Easter Sunday.

Now she would be treated as a slave. Because she would not work on Sunday, she received no food that day. Her life in grace grew rapidly. She told a missionary that she often meditated on the great dignity of being baptized. 
She was powerfully moved by God’s love for human beings and saw the dignity of each of her people.

She was always in danger, for her conversion and holy life created great opposition. On the advice of a priest, 
she stole away one night and began a 200-mile walking journey to a Christian Indian village at Sault St. Louis, near Montreal.

For three years she grew in holiness under the direction of a priest and an older Iroquois woman, giving herself totally to God in long hours of prayer, in charity and in strenuous penance. At 23 she took a vow of virginity, an unprecedented act for an Indian woman, whose future depended on being married. She found a place in the woods where she could pray an hour a day—
and was accused of meeting a man there!

Her dedication to virginity was instinctive: She did not know about religious life for women until she visited Montreal. Inspired by this, she and two friends wanted to start a community, but the local priest dissuaded her. She humbly accepted an “ordinary” life. She practiced extremely severe fasting as penance for the conversion of her nation. She died the afternoon before Holy Thursday. Witnesses said that her emaciated face changed color and became like that of a healthy child. The lines of suffering, 
even the pockmarks, disappeared and the touch of a smile came upon her lips. 

She was beatified in 1980 and canonized in 2012.



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

Invitatory Psalm
Psalm 99 (100)


The Lord is a great king: 

come, let us adore him.


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


The Lord is a great king: 

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.


The Lord is a great king: 

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.


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.
Amen.


The Lord is a great king: 

come, let us adore him.



Hymn

Worship, glory, praise and honour
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 67 (68)
The Lord's triumphal journey

Let God arise,
let those who hate him flee before him.

God arises and his enemies are scattered:
those who hate him flee from his sight.
You blow them away like wisps of smoke;
as wax melts in front of a fire,
so the wicked melt away before God.
The righteous are glad and exult in God’s sight;
they rejoice in their gladness.
Sing to the Lord and celebrate his name!
Make a road for him who rides upon the clouds –
“The Lord” is his name.
Rejoice in his sight,
the father of orphans, defender of widows,
God in his holy dwelling-place,
God, who gives the lonely a house to dwell in,
God, who leads captives out into prosperity;
but the rebellious shall live in a desert land.
God, when you set out in the sight of your people,
when you crossed the wilderness – the earth shook.
The heavens sent down dew at your coming –
the God of Sinai, the God of Israel.
At your bidding the rains came, O God,
your inheritance was worn out but you refreshed it.
All your creatures took up residence there,
in your goodness you made a place for the needy.

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.

Let God arise,
let those who hate him flee before him.


Psalm 67 (68)

This God of ours is a God who saves.
The Lord holds the keys of death.

The Lord gives out the word,
and a great army of maidens brings the news:
“The kings of the armies are fleeing, they are fleeing,
and the fair one at home is dividing the spoils.
While you sleep among the sheepfolds,
the wings of the dove shine with silver,
her feathers glow with green gold.
Through her the Almighty scatters the kings,
and the mountain of Zalmon is white with snow.
The mountain of Bashan is God’s mountain;
the mountain of God is a high-peaked mountain.
Why do you envy it, you high-peaked mountains,
envy the mountain that God has chosen?
The Lord will dwell there for ever.
The chariots of God are ten thousand thousand:
the Lord has come from Sinai to his holy sanctuary.
You have scaled the heights, you have taken captives,
you have received men as gifts
so that even the rebels live with the Lord God.
Blessings on the Lord, day after day!
God will carry us, God our savior.
Our God is a God of salvation,
our Lord is a Lord who rescues from death.
Truly God will break the heads of his enemies,
take the scalps of those who tread the path of crime.
The Lord has spoken:
“I shall bring them back from Bashan,
I shall bring them back from the depths of the sea,
so that your feet may be dipped in blood
and the tongues of your dogs receive food from your enemies.”

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.

This God of ours is a God who saves.
The Lord holds the keys of death.


Psalm 67 (68)

Kingdoms of the earth, sing to God, praise the Lord.

They have seen your processions, O God,
the processions of God, my king, to his sanctuary.
First came the singers, last the musicians,
between them the maidens playing their drums.
“Bless God in the assemblies:
bless the Lord, you who spring from Israel!”
There was young Benjamin, leading them,
the princes of Judah in their rich robes,
the princes of Zebulun, the princes of Naphtali.
O God, command in your strength;
make firm what you have achieved in us.
From your temple in Jerusalem,
kings shall bring you tribute.
Rebuke the wild beast of the reeds,
the herd of bulls, the lords of peoples.
Let them lie prostrate before you with tribute of silver.
Scatter the peoples that delight in war.
Nobles will come from Egypt,
Ethiopia will stretch out its hands to God.
Kingdoms of the earth, sing to God;
celebrate the Lord.
Sing to God who rides on the highest heavens,
at the origin of all things.
Listen! – he speaks, a voice of power.
Acknowledge the strength of the Lord:
his majesty is over Israel,
his strength is in the clouds.
God inspires awe in his holy place;
he, the God of Israel, gives power to his people;
he gives them strength.
Blessed be God!

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.

Kingdoms of the earth, sing to God, praise the Lord.


I will hear whatever the Lord God has to say:
– words of peace for his people.


First Reading
1 Kings 19:1-9,11-21

When Ahab told Jezebel all that Elijah had done, and how he had put all the prophets to the sword, Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah to say, ‘May the gods do this to me and more, if by this time tomorrow I have not made your life like the life of one of them!’ He was afraid and fled for his life. He came to Beersheba, a town of Judah, where he left his servant. He himself went on into the wilderness, a day’s journey, and sitting under a furze bush wished he were dead. ‘O Lord,’ he said ‘I have had enough. Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors.’ Then he lay down and went to sleep. But an angel touched him and said, ‘Get up and eat.’ He looked round, and there at his head was a scone baked on hot stones, and a jar of water. He ate and drank and then lay down again. But the angel of the Lord came back a second time and touched him and said, 
‘Get up and eat, or the journey will be too long for you.’ So he got up and ate and drank, 
and strengthened by that food he walked for forty days and forty nights until he reached Horeb, the mountain of God.

There he went into the cave and spent the night in it. Then he was told, ‘Go out and stand on the mountain before the Lord.’ Then the Lord himself went by. There came a mighty wind, so strong it tore the mountains and shattered the rocks before the Lord. But the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind came an earthquake. But the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire. But the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire there came the sound of a gentle breeze. And when Elijah heard this, he covered his face with his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. Then a voice came to him, which said, ‘What are you doing here, Elijah?’ He replied, ‘I am filled with jealous zeal for the Lord of Hosts, because the sons of Israel have deserted you, broken down your altars and put your prophets to the sword. I am the only one left and they want to kill me.’

‘Go,’ the Lord said ‘go back by the same way to the wilderness of Damascus. You are to go and anoint Hazael as king of Aram. You are to anoint Jehu son of Nimshi as king of Israel, and to anoint Elisha son of Shaphat, of Abel Meholah, as prophet to succeed you. Anyone who escapes the sword of Hazael will be put to death by Jehu; and anyone who escapes the sword of Jehu will be put to death by Elisha. But I shall spare seven thousand in Israel: all the knees that have not bent before Baal, 
all the mouths that have not kissed him.’

Leaving there, he came on Elisha son of Shaphat as he was ploughing behind twelve yoke of oxen, he himself being with the twelfth. Elijah passed near to him and threw his cloak over him. Elisha left his oxen and ran after Elijah. ‘Let me kiss my father and mother, then I will follow you’ he said. Elijah answered, ‘Go, go back; for have I done anything to you?’ Elisha turned away, took the pair of oxen and slaughtered them. He used the plough for cooking the oxen, then gave to his men, who ate. 
He then rose, and followed Elijah and became his servant.


Responsory

The Lord said to Moses:
While my glory passes by,
I will put you in a crevice of the rock and cover you with my hand until I have passed by;
for no mortal man may see God and live.

No-one has ever seen God,
but God’s only Son,
who is nearest to the Father’s heart,
has made him known;
for no mortal man may see God and live.


Second Reading
From the treatise "On the Mysteries"
by St Ambrose, bishop

The many prefigurations of baptism in Scripture

Listen to the Apostle’s teaching: For all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and were all baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea. Moreover, Moses himself sings in triumph You sent your Spirit and the sea covered them. As you see, holy baptism was prefigured even then at the crossing of the sea, where the Egyptians perished but the Hebrews escaped. What else, after all, are we daily taught about baptism? That with the immersion in water, 
guilt is swallowed up and error done away with, but that virtue and innocence remain unharmed?

You hear that our fathers were under the cloud, a kindly cloud which cooled the heat of carnal passions. That kindly cloud overshadows those whom the Holy Spirit visits. Finally it came upon the Virgin Mary, and the Power of the Most High overshadowed her, when she conceived Redemption for the race of men. The miracle worked by Moses was a prefiguration of this miracle. But then – if the Spirit was in the figure, how can he not be present in the reality? As Scripture says, 
The law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.

Marah was a spring of unendurably bitter water: Moses threw wood into it and it became sweet. For you see: water without the preaching of the Cross of the Lord is of no use for future salvation, but, after it has been consecrated by the mystery of the wood of the saving Cross, it is made suitable for the use of the spiritual cleansing and of the cup of salvation. So as Moses (that is, the prophet) threw wood into that fountain, so the priest utters over this font the proclamation of the Lord’s cross, 
and the water is made sweet for the purpose of grace.

You must not trust, then, wholly to your bodily eyes. What is not seen is in reality seen more clearly; for what we see with our eyes is temporal whereas what is eternal (and invisible to the eye) is discerned by the mind and spirit.

There is a final lesson to be learned from the book of the Kings which we have just been reading. Naaman was a Syrian, and suffered from leprosy, and there was no-one who could cleanse him. Then a maiden from among the captives said that there was a prophet in Israel, who could cleanse him from the defilement of the leprosy. And it is said that, having taken silver and gold, Naaman went to the king of Israel. And the king, when he heard why Naaman had come, tore his garments, saying that this was an attempt to put him in the wrong, since healing leprosy was not in the power of kings. Elisha, however, sent word to the king that he should send the Syrian to him, so that he might know there was a God in Israel. And when he had come, 
he told him to dip himself seven times in the river Jordan.

Naaman doubted until the time when he was cleansed; but you are cleansed by now, and so you should not have doubts.


Responsory

The Lord led out his own people like sheep.
He led them in safety and they were not afraid,
and the sea closed over their enemies.

They all received baptism into the fellowship of Moses in cloud and sea,
and the sea closed over their enemies.

Let us pray.

God and Father,
to those who go astray
you reveal the light of your truth
and enable them to return to the right path.
Grant that all who have received the grace of baptism
may strive to be worthy of their Christian calling
and reject everything opposed to it.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

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