Advent

WEEK III - FRIDAY

Office of Readings



Invitatory
The Invitatory opens the first Office of the day. If Morning Prayer is the first Office of the day, begin below.

Lord, open my lips.
 - And my mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Psalm 95 is the traditional Invitatory Psalm. Psalm 24, 67, or 100 may be substituted.

Antiphon: Come let us worship the Lord, the King who is to come.





Office of Readings

God, come to my assistance.
 - Lord, make haste to help me.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 -  as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever.
Amen. (Alleluia.)


HYMN

On Jordan's Bank the Baptist's Cry

Or:

-
In ancient times God spoke to man
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.
Text: Stanbrook Abbey; Melody: Herr Jesu Christ


PSALMODY

Antiphon 1: I am worn out with crying, with longing for my God.


                    I
Save me, O God,
for the waters have risen to my neck.

I have sunk into the mud of the deep
and there is no foothold.
I have entered the waters of the deep
and the waves overwhelm me.

I am wearied with all my crying,
my throat is parched.
My eyes are wasted away
from looking for my God.

More numerous than the hairs on my head
are those who hate me without cause.
Those who attack me with lies
are too much for my strength.

How can I restore
what I have never stolen?
O God, you know my sinful folly;
my sins you can see.

Let not those who hope in you be put to shame
through me, Lord of hosts:
let not those who seek you be dismayed
through me, God of Israel.

It is for you that I suffer taunts,
that shame covers my face,
that I have become a stranger to my brothers,
an alien to my own mother's sons.
I burn with zeal for your house
and taunts against you fall on me.

When I afflict my soul with fasting
they make it a taunt against me.
When I put on sackcloth and mourning
then they make me a byword,
the gossip of men at the gates,
the subject of drunkard's songs.  Glory...

Antiphon 1 I am worn out with crying, with longing for my God.


Antiphon 2 I needed food and they gave me gall; I was parched with thirst and they gave me vinegar.


                   II
This is my prayer to you,
my pray for your favor.
In your great love, answer me, O God,
with your help that never fails;
rescue me from sinking in the mud,
save me from my foes.

Save me from the waters of the deep
lest the waves overwhelm me.
Do not let the deep engulf me
nor death close its mouth on me.

Lord, answer, for your love is kind;
in your compassion, turn towards me.
Do not hide your face from your servant;
answer me quickly for I am in distress.
Come close to my soul and redeem me;
ransom me pressed by my foes.

You know how they taunt and deride me;
my oppressors are all before you.
Taunts have broken my heart;
I have reached the end of my strength.
I looked in vain for compassion, for consolers;
not one could I find.

For food they gave me poison;
in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.  Glory...

Antiphon 2 I needed food and they gave me gall; I was parched with thirst and they gave me vinegar.


Antiphon 3 Seek the Lord and you will live.

                   III
As for me in my poverty and pain,
let your help, O God, lift me up.

I will praise God's name with a song;
I will glorify him with thanksgiving.
A gift pleasing God more than oxen,
more than beasts prepared for sacrifice.

The poor when they see it will be glad
and God-seeking hearts will revive;
for the Lord listens to the needy
and does not spurn his servants in their chains.
Let the heavens and the earth give him praise,
the sea and all its living creatures.

For God will bring help to Zion
and rebuild the cities of Judah
and men shall dwell there in possession.
The sons of his servants shall inherit it;
those who love his name shall dwell there.  Glory...

Psalm Prayer: God our Father, to show the way of salvation, you chose that the standard of the cross should go before us, and you fulfilled the ancient prophecies in Christ's Passover from death to life. Do not let us rouse your burning indignation by sin, but rather, through the contemplation of his wounds, make us burn with zeal for the honor of your Church and with grateful love for you.


Antiphon 3 Seek the Lord and you will live.

Let your compassion come upon me, Lord..
- Your salvation, true to your promise.


FIRST READING

From the book of the prophet Isaiah           33:7-24

The future salvation

See, the men of Ariel cry out in the streets,
  the messengers of Shalem weep bitterly.
The highways are desolate,
  travelers have quit the paths,
Covenants are broken, their terms are spurned;
  yet no man gives it a thought.
The country languishes in mourning,
  Lebanon withers with shame;
Sharon is like the steppe,
  Bashan and Carmel are stripped bare.

Now will I rise up, says the Lord,
  now will I be exalted, now be lifted up.
You conceive dry grass, bring forth stubble;
  my spirit shall consume you like fire.
The peoples shall be as in a limekiln,
  like brushwood cut down for burning in the fire.
Hear, you who are far off, what I have done;
  you who are near, acknowledge my might.

On Zion sinners are in dread,
  trembling grips the impious:
"Who of us can live with the consuming fire?
  who of us can live with the everlasting flames?"

He who practices virtue and speaks honestly,
  who spurns what is gained by oppression,
Brushing his hands free of contact with a bribe,
  stopping his ears lest he hear of bloodshed,
  closing his eyes lest he look on evil--
He shall dwell on the heights,
  his stronghold shall be the rocky fastness,
  his food and drink in steady supply.
 
Your eyes will see a king in his splendor,
  they will look upon a vast land.
Your mind will dwell on the terror:
  "Where is he who counted, where is he who weighed?
  Where is he who counted the towers?"
To the people of alien tongue you will look no more,
  the people of obscure speech,
  stammering in a language not understood.

Look to Zion, the city of our festivals;
  let your eyes see Jerusalem
  as a quiet abode, a tent not to be struck,
Whose pegs will never be pulled up,
  nor any of its ropes severed.
Indeed the Lord will be there with us, majestic;
  yes, the Lord our judge, the Lord our lawgiver,
  the Lord our king, he it is who will save us.

In a place of rivers and wide streams
  on which no boat is rowed,
  where no majestic ship passes,
The rigging hangs slack;
  it cannot hold the mast in place,
  nor keep the sail spread out.
Then the blind will divide great spoils
  and the lame will carry off the loot.
No one who dwells there will say, "I am sick";
  the people who live there will be forgiven their guilt.


RESPONSORY           Isaiah 33:22; Psalm 97:1
The Lord is our judge,
the Lord is our lawgiver,
the Lord is our king.
- He himself will come to save us.

The Lord has taken command, let the earth rejoice;
let the many islands be glad.
- He himself will come to save us.


SECOND READING

From a discourse on the Psalms by Saint Augustine, Bishop
(In ps. 37, 13-14: CCL 38 391-392)

The desire of your heart constitutes your prayer

In the anguish of my heart I groaned aloud. There is a hidden anguish which is inaudible to men. Yet when a man's heart is so taken up with some particular concern that the hurt inside finds vocal expression, one looks for the reason. And one will say to oneself: perhaps this is what causes his anguish, or perhaps such and such had happened to him. But who can be certain of the cause except God, who hears and sees his anguish? Therefore the psalmist says: In the anguish of my heart I groaned aloud. For if men hear at all, they usually hear only bodily groaning and know nothing of the anguish of the heart from which it issues.

Who then knows the cause of man's groaning? All my desire is before you. No, it is not open before other men, for they cannot understand the heart; but before you is all my desire. If your desire lies open to him who is your Father and who sees in secret, he will answer you.

For the desire of your heart is itself your prayer. And if the desire is constant, so is your prayer. The Apostle Paul had a purpose in saying: Pray without ceasing. Are we then ceaselessly to bend our knees, to lie prostrate, or to lift up our hands? Is this what is meant in saying: Pray without ceasing? Even if we admit that we pray in this fashion, I do not believe that we can do so all the time.

Yet there is another, interior kind of prayer without ceasing, namely, the desire of the heart. Whatever else you may be doing, if you but fix your desire on God's Sabbath rest, your prayer will be ceaseless. therefore, if you wish to pray without  ceasing, do not cease to desire.

The constancy of your desire will itself be the ceaseless voice of your prayer. And that voice of your prayer will be silent only when your love ceases. For who are silent? Those of whom it is said: Because evil has abounded, the love of many will grow cold.

The chilling of love means that the heart is silent; while burning love is the outcry of the heart. If your love is without ceasing, you are crying out always; if you always cry out, you are always desiring; and if you desire, you are calling to mind your eternal rest in the Lord.

     And all my desire is before you. What if the desire of our heart is before him, but not our groaning? But how is that possible, since the groaning is the voice of our desire? And therefore it is said: My groaning is not concealed from you. It may be concealed from men, but it is not concealed from you. Sometimes God's servant seems to be saying in his humility: My anguish is not concealed from you. At other times he seems to be laughing. Does that mean that the desire of his heart has died within him? If the desire is there, then the groaning is there as well. Even if men fail to hear it. it never ceases to sound in the hearing of God.


RESPONSORY          
We are Christ's pilgrim people,
journeying until we reach our homeland,
singing on the way as we eagerly expect the fulfillment of our hope.
- For if one hopes, even though his tongue is still, he is singing always in his heart.

But the man who has no hope,
no matter what clamors and shouts he makes to be heard by men,
is speechless in the presence of God.
- For if one hopes, even though his tongue is still, he is singing always in his heart.


COLLECT
May your grace, almighty God,
always go before us and follow after,
so that we, who await with heartfelt desire
the coming of your Only Begotten Son,
may receive your help both now and in the life to come.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.


May the Lord bless us, protect us from all evil and bring us to everlasting life. Amen.


The English translation of Psalm Responses, Alleluia Verses, Gospel Verses from Lectionary for Mass 1969, 1981, 1997, International Commission on English in the Liturgy Corporation (ICEL); the English translation of Antiphons, Invitatories, Responsories, Intercessions, Psalm 95, the Canticle of the Lamb, Psalm Prayers, Non-Biblical Readings from The Liturgy of the Hours 1973, 1974, 1975, ICEL; excerpts from the English translation of The Roman Missal 2010, ICEL. All rights reserved. Used with permission.



 
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