Ordinary Time

WEEK 15 - WEDNESDAY

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 before the Lord, our maker.





Office of Readings
Psalter, Wednesday Week III

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

God, whose almighty word
Chaos and darkness heard
And took their flight:
Hear us, we humbly pray,
And where the Gospel day
Sheds not its glorious ray,
Let there be light!

Lord, who once came to bring,
On your redeeming wing,
Healing and sight,
Health to the sick in mind,
Sight to the inly blind:
Oh, now to humankind
Let there be light!

Spirit of truth and love,
Life giving, holy dove,
Speed forth your flight;
Move on the water’s face,
Bearing the lamp of grace,
And in earth’s darkest place
Let there be light!

Holy and blessed three,
Glorious Trinity,
Wisdom, love, might!
Boundless as ocean’s tide,
Rolling in fullest pride,
Through the earth, far and wide,
Let there be light!
Text: John Marriot; Melody: Italian hymn 664.6664


PSALMODY

Antiphon 1: Whereever you are, Lord, there is mercy, there is truth.

Psalm 89:2-38
God's favors to the house of David
According to his promise, the Lord has raised up Jesus, a Savior, from the family of David (Acts 13:22,23)

    I
I will sing for ever of your love, O Lord;
through all ages my mouth will proclaim your truth.
Of this I am sure, that your love lasts for ever,
that your truth is firmly established as the heavens.

"With my chosen one I have made a covenant;
I have sworn to David my servant:
I will establish your dynasty for ever
and set up your throne through all ages."

The heavens proclaim your wonders, O Lord;
the assembly of your holy ones proclaims your truth.
For who in the skies can compare with the Lord
or who is like the Lord among the sons of God?

A God to be feared in the council of the holy ones,
great and dreadful to all around him.
O Lord God of hosts, who is your equal?
You are mighty, O Lord, and truth is your garment.

It is you who rule the sea in its pride;
it is you who still the surging of its waves.
It is you who trod Rahab underfoot like a corpse,
scattering your foes with your mighty arm.

The heavens are yours, the world is yours.
It is you who founded the earth and all it holds;
it is you who created the North and the South.
Tabor and Hermon shout for joy at your name.

Yours is a mighty arm, O Lord;
your hand is strong, your right hand ready.
Justice and right are the pillars of your throne,
love and truth walk in your presence.

Happy the people who acclaim such a king,
who walk, O Lord, in the light of your face,
who find their joy every day in your name,
who make your justice the source of their bliss.

For you, O Lord, are the glory of their strength;
by your favor it is that our might is exalted;
for our ruler is in the keeping of the Lord;
our king in the keeping of the Holy One of Israel.  Glory...

Antiphon 1 Whereever you are, Lord, there is mercy, there is truth..


Antiphon 2 When the Son of God came into this world, he was born of David's line.

                      II
Of old you spoke in a vision.
To your friends the prophets you said:
I have set the crown on a warrior,
I have exalted one chosen from the people.

I have found David my servant
and with my holy oil anointed him.
My hand shall always be with him
and my arm shall make him strong.

The enemy shall never outwit him
nor the evil man oppress him.
I will beat down his foes before him
and smite those who hate him.

My truth and my love shall be with him;
by my name his might shall be exalted.
I will stretch out his hand to the Sea
and his right hand as far as the River.

He will say to me "You are my father,
my God, the rock who saves me."
And I will make him my first-born,
the highest of the kings of the earth.

I will keep my love for him always;
with him my covenant shall last.
I will establish his dynasty for ever,
make his throne endure as the heavens.   Glory...

Antiphon 2 When the Son of God came into this world, he was born of David's line.


Antiphon 3 Once for all I swore to my servant David, his dynasty shall never end.

                    III
If his sons forsake my law
and refuse to walk as I decree
and if ever they violate my statutes,
refusing to keep my commands;

then I will punish their offences with the rod,
then I will scourge them on account of their guilt
but I will never take back my love;
my truth will never fail.

I will never violate my covenant
nor go back on the word I have spoken.
Once for all, I have sworn by my holiness.
"I will never lie to David.

His dynasty shall last for ever.
In my sight his throne is like the sun;
like the moon, it shall endure for ever,
a faithful witness in the skies."  Glory...

Psalm Prayer: God, you anointed your servant Jesus with holy oil and raised him higher than all kings on earth. In this you fulfilled the promise made to Davids descendants and established a lasting covenant through your first-born Son. Do not forget your holy covenant, so that we who are signed with the blood of your Son through the new sacraments of faith may sing of your mercies for ever.

Antiphon 3 Once for all I swore to my servant David, his dynasty shall never end.


When we listen to your word, our minds are filled with light.
- It is the lowly heart that understands.





FIRST READING

From the first book of Kings           21:1-21,27-29

Elijah, defender of justice for the poor

As Naboth the Jezreelite had a vineyard in Jezreel next to the palace of Ahab, king of Samaria, Ahab said to Naboth, "Give me your vineyard to be my vegetable garden, since it is close by, next to my house. I will give you a better vineyard in exchange, or, if you prefer, I will give you its value in money." "The Lord forbid," Naboth answered him, "that I should give you my ancestral heritage." Ahab went home disturbed and angry at the answer Naboth the Jezreelite had made to him: "I will not give you my ancestral heritage." Lying down on his bed, he turned away from food and would not eat.

His wife Jezebel came to him and said to him, "Why are you so angry that you will not eat?" He answered her, "Because I spoke to Naboth the Jezreelite and said to him, 'Sell me your vineyard, or, if you prefer, I will give you a vineyard in exchange.' But he refused to let me have his vineyard." "A fine ruler over Israel you are indeed!" his wife Jezebel said to him. "Get up. Eat and be cheerful. I will obtain the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite for you."

So she wrote letters in Ahab's name and, having sealed them with his seal, sent them to the elders and to the nobles who lived in the same city with Naboth. This is what she wrote in the letters: "Proclaim a fast and set Naboth at the head of the people. Next, get two scoundrels to face him and accuse him of having cursed God and king. Then take him out and stone him to death." His fellow citizens--the elders and the nobles who dwelt in his city--did as Jezebel had ordered them in writing, through the letters she had sent them. They proclaimed a fast and placed Naboth at the head of the people. Two scoundrels came in and confronted him with the accusation, "Naboth has cursed God and king." And they led him out of the city and stoned him to death. Then they sent the information to Jezebel that Naboth had been stoned to death.

When Jezebel learned that Naboth had been stoned to death, she said to Ahab, "Go on, take possession of the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite which he refused to sell you, because Naboth is not alive, but dead." On hearing that Naboth was dead, Ahab started off on his way down to the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, to take possession of it.

But the Lord said to Elijah the Tishbite: "Start down to meet Ahab, king of Israel, who rules in Samaria. He will be in the vineyard of Naboth, of which he has come to take possession. This is what you shall tell him, 'The Lord says: After murdering, do you also take possession? For this, the Lord says: In the place where the dogs licked up the blood of Naboth, the dogs shall lick up your blood, too.'" "Have you found me out, my enemy?" Ahab said to Elijah. "Yes," he answered. "Because you have given yourself up to doing evil in the Lord'S sight, I am bringing evil upon you: I will destroy you and will cut off every male in Ahab's line, whether slave or freeman, in Israel.

When Ahab heard these words, he tore his garments and put on sackcloth over his bare flesh. He fasted, slept in the sackcloth, and went about subdued. Then the Lord said to Elijah the Tishbite, "Have you seen that Ahab has humbled himself before me? Since he has humbled himself before me, I will not bring the evil in his time. I will bring the evil upon his house during the reign of his son."


RESPONSORY          James 4:8,9,10:5:6
Cleanse your hands, you sinners,
and purify your hearts, you who are fickle;
 - mourn and weep,
humble yourselves before the Lord.

You condemned the just man and put him to death
and he offered you no resistance.
 - mourn and weep,
humble yourselves before the Lord.


SECOND READING

From the treatise On the Mysteries by Saint Ambrose, bishop
(Nn. 19-21,24,26-38: SC 25 bis, 164-170)

Water does not sanctify without the Holy Spirit

You were told before not to believe only what you saw. This was to prevent you from saying: Is this the great mystery that eye has not seen nor ear heard nor man's heart conceived? I see the water I used to see every day; does this water in which I have often bathed without being sanctified really have the power to sanctify me? Learn from this that water does not sanctify without the Holy Spirit.

You have read that the three witnesses of baptism - the water, the blood and the Spirit - are one. This means that if you take away one of these the sacrament of baptism is not conferred. What is water without the cross of Christ? Only an ordinary element without sacramental effect. Again, without water there is no sacrament of rebirth. Unless a man is born again of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. The catechumen believes in the cross of the Lord with which he too is signed, but unless he is baptized in the name of the Father, and of the son and of the Holy Spirit, he cannot receive the forgiveness of sins or the gift of spiritual grace.

The Syrian Naaman bathed seven times under the old law, but you were baptized in the name of the Trinity. You proclaimed your faith in the father - recall what you did - and the Son and the Spirit. Mark the sequence of events. In proclaiming this faith you died to the world, you rose again to God, and, as though buried to sin, you were reborn to eternal life. Believe, then, that the water is not without effect.

The paralytic at the pool was waiting for someone. Who was this if not the Lord Jesus, born of a virgin? At his coming it is not a question of a shadow healing an individual, but Truth himself healing the universe. He is the one whose coming was expected, the one of whom God the father spoke when he said to John the Baptist: He on whom you see the Spirit coming down from heaven and resting, this is the one who baptizes in the Holy Spirit. He is the one witnessed to by John: I saw the Spirit coming down from heaven as a dove and resting on him. Why did the Spirit come down as a dove if not to let you see and understand that the dove sent out by holy Noah from the ark was a figure of this dove? In this way you were to recognize a type of this sacrament.

Is there any room left for doubt? The Father speaks clearly in the Gospel: This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; the Son too, above whom the Holy Spirit showed himself in the form of a dove; and also the Holy Spirit, who came down as a dove. David too speaks clearly: The voice of the Lord is above the waters; the God of glory has thundered; the Lord is above the many waters. Again, Scripture bears witness for you that fire came down from heaven in answer to Gideon's prayers, and that when Elijah prayed, God sent fire which consumed the sacrifice.

Do not consider the merits of individuals but the office of the priests. If you do look at merits, consider the merits of Peter and also of Paul in the same way as you consider the merits of Elijah; they have handed on to us this sacrament which they received from the Lord Jesus. Visible fire was sent upon them to give them faith; in us who believe an invisible fire is at work. That visible fire was a sign, our invisible fire is for our instruction. Believe then that the Lord Jesus is present when he is invoked by the prayers of the priests. He said: Where two or three are gathered, there I am also. How much more does he give his loving presence where the Church is, where the sacraments are!

You went down into the water. Remember what you said: I believe in the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Not: I believe in a greater, a lesser and a least. You are committed by this spoken understanding of yours to believe the same of the Son as of the Father, and the same of the Holy Spirit as of the Son, with this one exception: you proclaim that you must believe in the cross of the Lord Jesus alone.


RESPONSORY          Matthew 3:11; Isaiah 1:16,17,18
The one who comes after me is greater than I.
I am not worthy to carry off his sandals.
 - He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.

Cease to do evil and learn to do good, says the Lord.
 = He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.


COLLECT
O God, who show the light of your truth
to those who go astray,
so that they may return to the right path,
give all who for the faith they profess
are accounted Christians
the grace to reject whatever is contrary to the name of Christ
and to strive after all that does it honor.
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.


Let us praise the Lord.
- And give him thanks.



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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