Friday, September 22, 2017

FRIDAY OF THE TWENTY FOURTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME


Antiphon
Cf. Sir 36:18

Give peace, O Lord, to those who wait for you,
that your prophets be found true.
Hear the prayers of your servant,
and of your people Israel.

Collect

Look upon us, O God,
Creator and ruler of all things,
and, that we may feel the working of your mercy,
grant that we may serve you with all our heart.
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.



Friday of the Twenty-fourth Week in Ordinary Time

Reading
1 TM 6:2C-12

Beloved:

Teach and urge these things.
Whoever teaches something different
and does not agree with the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ
and the religious teaching
is conceited, understanding nothing,
and has a morbid disposition for arguments and verbal disputes.
From these come envy, rivalry, insults, evil suspicions,
and mutual friction among people with corrupted minds,
who are deprived of the truth,
supposing religion to be a means of gain.
Indeed, religion with contentment is a great gain.
For we brought nothing into the world,
just as we shall not be able to take anything out of it.
If we have food and clothing, we shall be content with that.
Those who want to be rich are falling into temptation and into a trap
and into many foolish and harmful desires,
which plunge them into ruin and destruction.
For the love of money is the root of all evils,
and some people in their desire for it have strayed from the faith
and have pierced themselves with many pains.

But you, man of God, avoid all this.
Instead, pursue righteousness, devotion,
faith, love, patience, and gentleness.
Compete well for the faith.
Lay hold of eternal life,
to which you were called when you made the noble confession
in the presence of many witnesses.


Responsorial Psalm
PS 49:6-7, 8-10, 17-18, 19-20

R. Blessed the poor in spirit;
the Kingdom of heaven is theirs!

Why should I fear in evil days
when my wicked ensnarers ring me round?
They trust in their wealth;
the abundance of their riches is their boast.

R. Blessed the poor in spirit;
the Kingdom of heaven is theirs!

Yet in no way can a man redeem himself,
or pay his own ransom to God;
Too high is the price to redeem one's life; he would never have enough
to remain alive always and not see destruction.

R. Blessed the poor in spirit;
the Kingdom of heaven is theirs!

Fear not when a man grows rich,
when the wealth of his house becomes great,
For when he dies, he shall take none of it;
his wealth shall not follow him down.

R. Blessed the poor in spirit;
the Kingdom of heaven is theirs!

Though in his lifetime he counted himself blessed,
"They will praise you for doing well for yourself,"
He shall join the circle of his forebears
who shall never more see light.

R. Blessed the poor in spirit;
the Kingdom of heaven is theirs.


Alleluia
MT 11:25

R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth;
you have revealed to little ones the mysteries of the Kingdom.

R. Alleluia, alleluia.


Gospel
LK 8:1-3

Jesus journeyed from one town and village to another,
preaching and proclaiming the good news of the Kingdom of God.
Accompanying him were the Twelve
and some women who had been cured of evil spirits and infirmities,
Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out,
Joanna, the wife of Herod's steward Chuza,
Susanna, and many others
who provided for them out of their resources.



September 22

Saint Thomas of Villanueva (1488 - 1555)

Augustinian bishop.

Born at Fuentellana, Castile, Spain, he was the son of a miller. He studied at the University of Alcala, earned a licentiate in theology, and became a professor there at the age of twenty-six. He declined the chair of philosophy at the university of Salamanca and instead entered the Order of St Augustine at Salamanca in 1516. Ordained in 1520, he served as prior of several houses in Salamanca, Burgos, and Valladolid, as provincial ofAndal usia and Castile, and then court chaplain to Holy Roman Emperor Charles V (r. 1519-1556). During his time as provincial of Castile, he dispatched the first Augustinian missionaries to the New World. They subsequently helped evangelize the area of modern Mexico. He was offered but declined the see of Granada, but accepted appointment as archbishop of Valencia in 1544. As the see had been vacant for nearly a century, Thomas devoted much effort to restoring the spiritual and material life of the archdiocese. He was also deeply committed to the needs of the poor. He held the post of grand almoner of the poor, founded colleges for the children of new converts and the poor, organized priests for service among the Moors, and was renowned for his personal saintliness and austerities. While he did not attend the sessions of the Council of Trent, 
he was an ardent promoter of the Tridentine reforms throughout Spain.



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

Invitatory Psalm
Psalm 66 (67)

Indeed, how good is the Lord: 
bless his holy name.

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.

Indeed, how good is the Lord: 
bless his holy name.

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.

Indeed, how good is the Lord: 
bless his holy name.

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.

Indeed, how good is the Lord: 
bless his holy name.

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.

Indeed, how good is the Lord: 
bless his holy name.


Hymn

God has spoken by his prophets,
Spoken his unchanging word,
Each from age to age proclaiming
God the One, the righteous Lord.
Mid the world’s despair and turmoil,
one firm anchor holdeth fast:
God is King, his throne eternal,
God the first and God the last.
God has spoken by Christ Jesus,
Christ, the everlasting Son,
Brightness of the Father’s glory,
With the Father ever one;
Spoken by the Word incarnate,
God of God, ere time began,
Light of Light, to earth descending,
Man, revealing God to man.


Psalm 54 (55)
Against a faithless friend

Do not reject my plea, O God,
for wicked men assail me.

Open your ears, O God, to my prayer,
and do not hide when I call on you:
turn to me and answer me.
My thoughts are distracted and I am disturbed
by the voice of my enemy and the oppression of the wicked.
They let loose their wickedness on me,
they persecute me in their anger.
My heart is tied in a knot
and the terrors of death lie upon me;
fear and trembling cover me;
terror holds me tight.
I said, “Will no-one give me wings like a dove?
I shall fly away and rest.
I shall flee far away
and remain all alone.
I shall wait for him who will save me
from the stormy wind and the tempest.”

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.

Do not reject my plea, O God,
for wicked men assail me.


Psalm 54 (55)

The Lord will free us from the hand of our enemies
and from those who wish us harm.

Scatter them, Lord, and separate their tongues,
for I see violence and conflict in the city.
By day and by night they circle it
high on its battlements.
Within it are oppression and trouble;
scheming and fraud fill its squares.
For if my enemy had slandered me,
I think I could have borne it.
And if the one who hated me had trampled me,
perhaps I could have hidden.
But you – a man just like me,
my companion and my friend!
We had happy times together,
we walked together in the house of 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.

The Lord will free us from the hand of our enemies
and from those who wish us harm.


Psalm 54 (55)

Entrust your cares to the Lord and he will support you.

Let death break in upon them!
Let them go down alive to the underworld,
for wickedness shares their home.
As for me, I will call upon God,
and the Lord will rescue me.
Evening, morning, noon – I shall watch and groan,
and he will hear my voice.
He will redeem my soul
and give it peace from those who attack me –
for very many are my enemies.
God will hear and will bring them low,
God, the eternal.
They will never reform:
they do not fear God.
That man – he stretched out his hand against his allies:
he corrupted his own covenant.
His face was smoother than butter,
but his heart was at war;
his words were softer than oil,
but they were sharp as drawn swords.
Throw all your cares on the Lord
and he will give you sustenance.
He will not let the just be buffeted for ever.
No – but you, Lord, will lead the wicked
to the gaping mouth of destruction.
The men of blood and guile
will not live half their days.
But I, Lord, will put my trust in you.

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.

Entrust your cares to the Lord and he will support you.


My son, attend to my wisdom,
– and turn your ears to my words of prudence.


First Reading
Ezekiel 16:3,5,6-7,8-15,35,37,40-43,59-63

The Lord says this:

By origin and birth you belong to the land of Canaan. Your father was an Amorite and your mother a Hittite. You were exposed in the open fields; you were as unloved as that on the day you were born. I saw you struggling in your blood as I was passing, and I said to you as you lay in your blood: 
Live, and grow like the grass of the fields.

You developed, you grew, you reached marriageable age. Then I saw you as I was passing. Your time had come, the time for love. I spread part of my cloak over you and covered your nakedness; I bound myself by oath, I made a covenant with you – it is the Lord who speaks – and you became mine. I bathed you in water, I washed the blood off you, I anointed you with oil. I gave you embroidered dresses, fine leather shoes, a linen headband and a cloak of silk. I loaded you with jewels, gave you bracelets for your wrists and a necklace for your throat. I gave you nose-ring and earrings; I put a beautiful diadem on your head. You were loaded with gold and silver, and dressed in fine linen and embroidered silks. Your food was the finest flour, honey and oil. You grew more and more beautiful; and you rose to be queen. The fame of your beauty spread through the nations, since it was perfect, because I had clothed you with my own splendor – 
it is the Lord who speaks.

You have become infatuated with your own beauty; you have used your fame to make yourself a prostitute; you have offered your services to all comers. Well then, whore, hear the word of the Lord. For all this, I am going to band together all the lovers who have pleasured you, both those you liked and those you disliked. They will then whip up the crowd against you; you will be stoned and run through with a sword; they will set your houses on fire and execute justice on you with crowds of women looking on; I will put an end to your whoring: no more paid lovers for you. I will exhaust my fury against you. My jealousy will then leave you; I shall be appeased and my anger will stop. Since you have never remembered your youth, since in all this you have done nothing but provoke me, I in my turn intend to bring your conduct down on your own head–it is the Lord who speaks. Have you not been disgusting with all your filthy practices?

For the Lord says this: I will treat you as you deserve, you who have despised your oath even to the extent of breaking a covenant, but I will remember the covenant that I made with you when you were a girl, and I will conclude a covenant with you that shall last for ever. And you for your part will remember your past behaviour and be covered with shame when I take your elder and younger sisters and make them your daughters, although this was not included in this covenant. I am going to renew my covenant with you; 
and you will learn that I am the Lord, and so remember and be covered with shame, 
and in your confusion be reduced to silence, when I have pardoned you for all that you have done–
it is the Lord who speaks.


Responsory

I called you like a wife forsaken.
In overflowing wrath for a moment I hid my face from you;
now, with everlasting love,
I will have compassion on you,
says the Lord, your Redeemer.

I will remember my covenant with you in the days of your youth,
and I will establish with you an everlasting covenant:
now, with everlasting love,
I will have compassion on you,
says the Lord, your Redeemer.


Second Reading
St Augustine's sermon On Pastors

Prepare your soul for temptation

You have already been told about the wicked things shepherds desire. Let us now consider what they neglect. You have failed to strengthen what was weak, to heal what was sick, and to bind up what was injured (that is, what was broken). You did not call back the straying sheep, nor seek out the lost. 
What was strong you have destroyed. Yes, you have cut it down and killed it. 
The sheep is weak, that is to say, its heart is weak, and so, incautious and unprepared, 
it may give in to temptations.

The negligent shepherd fails to say to the believer: My son, come to the service of God. Stand fast in fear and in righteousness, and prepare your soul for temptation. A shepherd who does say this strengthens the one who is weak and makes him strong. Such a believer will then not hope for the prosperity of this world. For if he has been taught to hope for worldly gain, he will be corrupted by prosperity. 
When adversity comes, he will be wounded or perhaps destroyed.

The builder who builds in such manner is not building the believer on a rock but upon sand. But the rock was Christ. Christians must imitate Christ’s sufferings, not set their hearts on pleasures. He who is weak will be strengthened when told: “Yes, expect the temptations of this world, but the Lord will deliver you from them all if your heart has not abandoned him. For it was to strengthen your heart that he came to suffer and die, came to be spit upon and crowned with thorns, came to be accused of shameful things, yes, came to be fastened to the wood of the cross. All these things he did for you, and you did nothing.  
He did them not for himself, but for you.”

But what sort of shepherds are they who for fear of giving offence not only fail to prepare the sheep for the temptations that threaten, but even promise them worldly happiness? God himself made no such promise to this world. On the contrary, God foretold hardship upon hardship in this world until the end of time. And you want the Christian to be exempt from these troubles? Precisely because he is a Christian, 
he is destined to suffer more in this world.

For the Apostle says: All who desire to live a holy life in Christ will suffer persecution. But you, shepherd, seek what is yours and not what is Christ’s, you disregard what the Apostle says: All who want to live a holy life in Christ will suffer persecution. You say instead: “If you live a holy life in Christ, all good things will be yours in abundance. If you do not have children, you will embrace and nourish all men, and none of them shall die.” Is this the way you build up the believer? Take note of what you are doing and where you are placing him. You have built him on sand. The rains will come, the river will overflow and rush in, 
the winds will blow, and the elements will dash against that house of yours. 
It will fall, and its ruin will be great.

Lift him up from the sand and put him on the rock. Let him be in Christ, if you wish him to be a Christian. Let him turn his thoughts to sufferings, however unworthy they may be in comparison to Christ’s. Let him centre his attention on Christ, who was without sin, and yet made restitution for what he had not done. Let him consider Scripture, which says to him: 
He chastises every son whom he acknowledges. 
Let him prepare to be chastised, or else not seek to be acknowledged as a son.


Responsory

God has approved us as fit to be entrusted with the gospel,
and on those terms we speak.
We do not curry favor with men:
we seek only the favor of God.

The appeal we make never springs from error or base motive:
there is no attempt to deceive.
We do not curry favor with men:
we seek only the favor of God.

Let us pray.

Look upon us, Lord, creator and ruler of the whole world:
give us grace to serve you with all our heart
that we may come to know the power of your forgiveness and love.
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.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

FEAST OF SAINT MATTHEW


Antiphon
Cf. Mt 28: 19-20

Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them
and teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you,
says the Lord.

Collect

O God, who with untold mercy
were pleased to choose as an Apostle
Saint Matthew, the tax collector,
grant that, sustained by his example and intercession,
we may merit to hold firm in following you.
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.



Feast of Saint Matthew
Apostle and evangelist

Reading
EPH 4:1-7, 11-13

Brothers and sisters:

I, a prisoner for the Lord,
urge you to live in a manner worthy of the call you have received,
with all humility and gentleness, with patience,
bearing with one another through love,
striving to preserve the unity of the Spirit
through the bond of peace:
one Body and one Spirit,
as you were also called to the one hope of your call;
one Lord, one faith, one baptism;
one God and Father of all,
who is over all and through all and in all.

But grace was given to each of us
according to the measure of Christ's gift.

And he gave some as Apostles, others as prophets,
others as evangelists, others as pastors and teachers,
to equip the holy ones for the work of ministry,
for building up the Body of Christ,
until we all attain to the unity of faith
and knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood,
to the extent of the full stature of Christ.


Responsorial Psalm
PS 19:2-3, 4-5

R. Their message goes out through all the earth.

The heavens declare the glory of God;
and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.
Day pours out the word to day,
and night to night imparts knowledge.

R. Their message goes out through all the earth.

Not a word nor a discourse
whose voice is not heard;
Through all the earth their voice resounds,
and to the ends of the world, their message.

R. Their message goes out through all the earth.


Alleluia
Te Deum

R. Alleluia, alleluia.

We praise you, O God,
we acclaim you as Lord;
the glorious company of Apostles praise you.

R. Alleluia, alleluia.


Gospel
MT 9:9-13

As Jesus passed by,
he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the customs post.

He said to him,

"Follow me."

And he got up and followed him.
While he was at table in his house,
many tax collectors and sinners came
and sat with Jesus and his disciples.
The Pharisees saw this and said to his disciples,
"Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?"

He heard this and said,

"Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do.
Go and learn the meaning of the words,
I desire mercy, not sacrifice.
I did not come to call the righteous but sinners."



September 21

Saint Matthew

Little is known about St. Matthew, except that he was the son of Alpheus, and he was likely born in Galilee. He worked as a tax collector, which was a hated profession during the time of Christ. According to the Gospel, Matthew was working at a collection booth in Capernaum when Christ came to him and asked, "Follow me." With this simple call, Matthew became a disciple of Christ.

From Matthew we know of the many doings of Christ and the message Christ spread of salvation for all people who come to God through Him. The Gospel account of Matthew tells the same story as that found in the other three Gospels, so scholars are certain of its authenticity. His book is the first of the four Gospels in the New Testament. Many years following the death of Christ, around 41 and 50 AD, Matthew wrote his gospel account. He wrote the book in Aramaic in the hope that his account would convince his fellow people that Jesus was the Messiah and that His kingdom had been fulfilled in a spiritual way. It was an important message at a time when almost everyone was expecting the return of a militant messiah brandishing a sword.

It is thought he departed for other lands to escape persecution sometime after 42 AD. According to various legends he fled to Parthia and Persia, or Ethiopia. Nothing is recorded of Matthew's passing. 
We do not know how he died, if his death was natural or if he was martyred.



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

Invitatory Psalm
Psalm 66 (67)

The Lord is the King of apostles: 
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.

The Lord is the King of apostles: 
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.

The Lord is the King of apostles: 
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.

The Lord is the King of apostles: 
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 the King of apostles: 
come, let us adore him.


Hymn

Bright as fire in darkness,
Sharper than a sword,
Lives throughout the ages
God’s eternal word.
Father, Son and Spirit,
Trinity of might,
Compassed in your glory,
Give the world your light.

Stanbrook Abbey Hymnal


Psalm 18 (19)
Praise of God the creator

Their voice has gone out through all the earth,
their message to the ends of the world.

The skies tell the story of the glory of God,
the firmament proclaims the work of his hands;
day pours out the news to day,
night passes to night the knowledge.
Not a speech, not a word,
not a voice goes unheard.
Their sound is spread throughout the earth,
their message to all the corners of the world.
At the ends of the earth he has set up
a dwelling place for the sun.
Like a bridegroom leaving his chamber,
it rejoices like an athlete at the race to be run.
It appears at the edge of the sky,
runs its course to the sky’s furthest edge.
Nothing can hide from its heat.

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.

Their voice has gone out through all the earth,
their message to the ends of the world.


Psalm 63 (64)
A prayer against enemies

They told what God has done;
they understood God’s deeds.

Listen, O God, to my voice;
keep me safe from fear of the enemy.
Protect me from the alliances of the wicked,
from the crowd of those who do evil.
They have sharpened their tongues like swords,
aimed poisonous words like arrows,
to shoot at the innocent in secret.
They will attack without warning, without fear,
for they are firm in their evil purpose.
They have set out to hide their snares
– for they say, “Who will see us?”
They have thought out plans to commit wicked deeds,
and they carry out what they have planned.
Truly the heart and soul of a man
are bottomless depths.
And God has shot them with his arrow:
in a moment, they are wounded –
their own tongues have brought them low.
All who see them will shake their heads;
all will behold them with fear
and proclaim the workings of God
and understand what he has done.
The just will rejoice and hope in the Lord:
the upright in heart will give him glory.

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.

They told what God has done;
they understood God’s deeds.


Psalm 96 (97)
The glory of God in his judgements

They proclaimed the justice of God;
all peoples saw his glory.

The Lord reigns! Let the earth rejoice,
let the many islands be glad.
Clouds and dark mist surround him,
his throne is founded on law and justice.
Fire precedes him,
burning up his enemies all around.
His lightnings light up the globe;
the earth sees and trembles.
The mountains flow like wax at the sight of the Lord,
at the sight of the Lord the earth dissolves.
The heavens proclaim his justice
and all peoples see his glory.
Let them be dismayed, who worship carved things,
who take pride in the images they make.
All his angels, worship him.
Zion heard and was glad,
the daughters of Judah rejoiced
because of your judgements, O Lord.
For you are the Lord, the Most High over all the earth,
far above all other gods.
You who love the Lord, hate evil!
The Lord protects the lives of his consecrated ones:
he will free them from the hands of sinners.
A light has arisen for the just,
and gladness for the upright in heart.
Rejoice, you just, in the Lord
and proclaim his holiness.

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.

They proclaimed the justice of God;
all peoples saw his glory.


They told of the Lord’s glory and might
– and the wonders that he had performed.


First Reading
Ephesians 4:1-16

I, the prisoner in the Lord, implore you to lead a life worthy of your vocation. Bear with one another charitably, in complete selflessness, gentleness and patience. Do all you can to preserve the unity of the Spirit by the peace that binds you together. There is one Body, one Spirit, just as you were all called into one and the same hope when you were called. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 
and one God who is Father of all, over all, through all and within all.

Each one of us, however, has been given his own share of grace, given as Christ allotted it. 
It was said that he would:

When he ascended to the height, he captured prisoners,
he gave gifts to men.

When it says, ‘he ascended’, what can it mean if not that he descended right down to the lower regions of the earth? The one who rose higher than all the heavens to fill all things is none other than the one who descended. And to some, his gift was that they should be apostles; to some, prophets; to some, evangelists; to some, pastors and teachers; so that the saints together make a unity in the work of service, building up the body of Christ. In this way we are all to come to unity in our faith and in our knowledge of the Son of God, until we become the perfect Man, fully mature with the fullness of Christ himself.

Then we shall not be children any longer, or tossed one way and another and carried along by every wind of doctrine, at the mercy of all the tricks men play and their cleverness in practising deceit. If we live by the truth and in love, we shall grow in all ways into Christ, who is the head by whom the whole body is fitted and joined together, every joint adding its own strength, for each separate part to work according to its function. 
So the body grows until it has built itself up, in love.


Responsory

℟. No prophecy ever came from man’s initiative.
* When men spoke for God it was the Holy Spirit that moved them.

℣. The Lord alone bestows wisdom and teaches knowledge.
* When men spoke for God it was the Holy Spirit that moved them.


Second Reading
A sermon
by St Bede the Venerable

Jesus saw him through the eyes of mercy and chose him

Jesus saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax office, and he said to him: Follow me. Jesus saw Matthew, not merely in the usual sense, but more significantly with his merciful understanding of men.

He saw the tax collector and, because he saw him through the eyes of mercy and chose him, he said to him: Follow me. This following meant imitating the pattern of his life – not just walking after him. St John tells us: Whoever says he abides in Christ ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.

And he rose and followed him. There is no reason for surprise that the tax collector abandoned earthly wealth as soon as the Lord commanded him. Nor should one be amazed that neglecting his wealth, he joined a band of men whose leader had, on Matthew’s assessment, no riches at all. Our Lord summoned Matthew by speaking to him in words. By an invisible, interior impulse flooding his mind with the light of grace, he instructed him to walk in his footsteps. In this way Matthew could understand that Christ, who was summoning him away from earthly possessions, had incorruptible treasures of heaven in his gift.

As he sat at table in the house, behold many tax collectors and sinners came and sat down with Jesus and his disciples. This conversion of one tax collector gave many men, those from his own profession and other sinners, an example of repentance and pardon. Notice also the happy and true anticipation of his future status as apostle and teacher of the nations. No sooner was he converted than Matthew drew after him a whole crowd of sinners along the same road to salvation. He took up his appointed duties while still taking his first steps in the faith, and from that hour he fulfilled his obligation and thus grew in merit. To see a deeper understanding of the great celebration Matthew held at his house, we must realise that he not only gave a banquet for the Lord at his earthly residence, but far more pleasing was the banquet set in his own heart which he provided through faith and love. Our Savior attests to this: Behold I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.

On hearing Christ’s voice, we open the door to receive him, as it were, when we freely assent to his promptings and when we give ourselves over to doing what must be done. Christ, since he dwells in the hearts of his chosen ones through the grace of his love, enters so that he might eat with us and we with him. He ever refreshes us by the light of his presence insofar as we progress in our devotion to and longing for the things of heaven. He himself is delighted by such a pleasing banquet.


Responsory

℟. Matthew was an accomplished scribe,
well versed in the law of God.
* With all his heart he studied the law of the Lord,
with whose help he lived as he taught.

℣. The gospel of the glory of God is Matthew’s.
* With all his heart he studied the law of the Lord,
with whose help he lived as he taught.


Hymn
Te Deum

God, we praise you; Lord, we proclaim you!
You, the Father, the eternal –
all the earth venerates you.
All the angels, all the heavens, every power –
The cherubim, the seraphim –
unceasingly, they cry:

“Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of Hosts:
heaven and earth are full of the majesty of your glory!”
The glorious choir of Apostles –
The noble ranks of prophets –
The shining army of martyrs –
all praise you.

Throughout the world your holy Church proclaims you.
– Father of immeasurable majesty,
– True Son, only-begotten, worthy of worship,
– Holy Spirit, our Advocate.

You, Christ:
– You are the king of glory.
– You are the Father’s eternal Son.
– You, to free mankind, did not disdain a Virgin’s womb.
– You defeated the sharp spear of Death,
and opened the kingdom of heaven to those who believe in you.
– You sit at God’s right hand, in the glory of the Father.
– You will come, so we believe, as our Judge.

And so we ask of you: give help to your servants,
whom you set free at the price of your precious blood.
Number them among your chosen ones in eternal glory.

Bring your people to safety, Lord,
and bless those who are your inheritance.
Rule them and lift them high for ever.
Day by day we bless you, Lord: we praise you forever and forever.
Of your goodness, Lord, keep us without sin for today.
Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy on us.
Let your pity, Lord, be upon us, as much as we trust in you.
In you, Lord, I trust: let me never be put to shame.

Let us pray.

Lord,
you showed your great mercy to Matthew the tax-gatherer
by calling him to become your apostle.
Supported by his prayer and example,
may we always answer your call
and live in close union with you.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever.
Amen.

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