Ordinary Time

WEEK 28 - 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: Cry out with joy to the Lord, all the earth; serve the Lord with gladness.





Office of Readings
Psalter, Wednesday Week IV

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

Lord Jesus Christ, be present now,
And let your Holy Spirit bow
All hearts in love and truth today
To hear your word and keep your way.

Give us the grace to grasp your word,
That we may do what we have heard.
Instruct us through the Scriptures, Lord,
As we draw near, O God adored.

May your glad tidings always bring
Good news to men that they may sing
Of how you came to save all men.
Instruct us till you come again.

To God the Father and the Son
And Holy Spirit, three in one;
To you, O blessed Trinity
Be praise throughout eternity.

Text: Catherine Winkworth; Melody: Herr Jesu Christ; Midi: Cyberhymnal


PSALMODY

Antiphon 1: Bless the Lord, O my soul; never forget all he has done for you.

Psalm 103
Praise for God's tender compassion
In the tender compassion of our God, the dawn from on high shall break upon us. (See Luke 1:78)

                       I
My soul, give thanks to the Lord
all my being, bless his holy name.
My soul, give thanks to the Lord
and never forget all his blessings.

It is he who forgives all your guilt,
who heals every one of your ills,
who redeems your life from the grave,
who crowns you with love and compassion,
who fills your life with good things,
renewing your youth like an eagle's.

The Lord does deeds of justice,
gives judgment for all who are oppressed.
He made known his ways to Moses
and his deeds to Israel's sons.  Glory...

Antiphon 1 Bless the Lord, O my soul; never forget all he has done for you.


Antiphon 2 As a father is gentle with his children, so is the Lord with those who revere him.


                       II
The Lord is compassion and love,
slow to anger and rich in mercy.
His wrath will come to an end;
he will not be angry for ever.
He does not treat us according to our sins
nor repay us according to our faults.

For as the heavens are high above the earth
so strong is his love for those who fear him.
As far as the east is from the west
so far does he remove our sins.

As a father has compassion on his sons,
the Lord has pity on those who fear him;
for he knows of what we are made,
he remembers that we are dust.

As for man, his days are like grass;
he flowers like the flower of the field;
the wind blows and he is gone
and his place never sees him again.  Glory...


Antiphon 2 As a father is gentle with his children, so is the Lord with those who revere him.


Antiphon 3 Bless the Lord, all you his works.

                           III
But the love of the Lord is everlasting
upon those who hold him in fear;
his justice reaches out to children's children
when they keep his covenant in truth,
when they keep his will in their mind.

The Lord has set his sway in heaven
and his kingdom is ruling over all.
Give thanks to the Lord, all his angels,
mighty in power, fulfilling his word,
who heed the voice of his word.

Give thanks to the Lord, all his hosts,
his servants who do his will.
Give thanks to the Lord, all his works,
in every place where he rules.
My soul, give thanks to the Lord!  Glory...

Psalm Prayer: You have compassion for the sinner, Lord, as a Father has compassion for his children. Heal the weakness of your people and save us from lasting death that we may praise and glorify you forever.

Antiphon 3 Bless the Lord, all you his works.


Lord, make me understand the way of your precepts,
- And I will marvel at your wisdom.


FIRST READING

From the book of the prophet Zechariah       3:1-4:14

Promises proclaimed to Zerubbabel the prince and Joshua the priest

The Lord showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, while Satan stood at his right hand to accuse him.

And the angel of the Lord said to Satan, "May the Lord rebuke you, Satan; may the Lord who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is not this man a brand snatched from the fire?"

Now Joshua was standing before the angel, clad in filthy garments. He spoke and said to those who were standing before him, "Take off his filthy garments, and clothe him in festal garments." He also said, "Put a clean miter on his head." And they put a clean miter on his head and clothed him with the garments. Then the angel of the Lord, standing, said, "See, I have taken away your guilt."

The angel of the Lord then gave Joshua this assurance: "Thus says the Lord of hosts: If you walk in my ways and heed my charge, you shall judge my house and keep my courts, and I will give you access among these standing here. Listen, O Joshua, high priest! You and your associates who sit before you are men of good omen. Yes, I will bring my servant the Shoot. Look at the stone that I have placed before Joshua, one stone with seven facets. I will engrave its inscription, says the Lord of hosts, and I will take away the guilt of the land in one day. On that day, says the Lord of hosts, you will invite one another under your vines and fig trees."
 
Then I said to the angel who spoke with me, "What are these things, my lord?" And the angel who spoke with me replied, "Do you not know what these things are?" "No, my lord," I answered.

Then he said to me, "This is the Lord's message to Zerubbabel: Not by an army, nor by might, but by my spirit, says the Lord of hosts. What are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you are but a plain. He shall bring out the capstone amid exclamations of 'Hail, Hail' to it."

This word of the Lord then came to me: The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundations of this house, and his hands shall finish it; then you shall know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you. For even they who were scornful on that day of small beginnings shall rejoice to see the select stone in the hands of Zerubbabel. These seven facets are the eyes of the Lord that range over the whole earth.

Then the angel who spoke with me returned and awakened me, like a man awakened from his sleep. "What do you see?" he asked me. "I see a lampstand all of gold, with a bowl at the top," I replied; "on it are seven lamps with their tubes, and beside it are two olive trees, one on the right and the other on the left." I then asked him, "What are these two olive trees at each side of the lampstand?"

And again I asked, "What are the two olive tufts which freely pour out fresh oil through the two golden channels?" "Do you not know what these are?" he said to me. "No, my lord," I answered him. He said, "These are the two anointed who stand by the Lord of the whole earth."


RESPONSORY          Revelation 11:4, see 3
There are the two olive trees and two lampstands
- that stand in the presence of the Lord of the earth.

The Lord shall select his two witnesses to prophesy.
- That stand in the presence of the Lord of the earth.


SECOND READING

From an inquiry addressed to Thalassius by Saint Maximus the Confessor, abbot
(Quaest. 63: PG 90, 667-670)

The light that illumines all men

The lamp set upon the lamp stand is Jesus Christ, the true light from the Father, the light that enlightens every man who comes into the world. In taking our own flesh he has become, and is rightly called, a lamp, for he is the connatural wisdom and word of the Father. He is proclaimed in the Church of God in accordance with orthodox faith, and he is lifted up and resplendent among the nations through the lives of those who live virtuously in observance of the commandments. So he gives light to all in the house (that is, in this world), just as he himself, God the Word, says: No one lights a lamp and puts it under a bushel, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. Clearly he is calling himself the lamp, he who was by nature God, and became flesh according to God's saving purpose.

I think the great David understood this when he spoke of the Lord as a lamp, saying:  For God delivers us from the darkness of ignorance and sin, and hence he is greeted as a lamp in Scripture.

Lamp-like indeed, he alone dispelled the gloom of ignorance and the darkness of evil and became the way of salvation for all men. Through virtue and knowledge, he leads to the Father those who are resolved to walk by him, who is the way of righteousness, in obedience to the divine commandments. He has designated holy Church the lamp stand, over which the word of God sheds light through preaching, and illumines with the rays of truth whoever is in this house which is the world, and fills the minds of all men with divine knowledge.

This word is most unwilling to be kept under a bushel; it wills to be set in a high place, upon the sublime beauty of the Church. For while the word was hidden under the bushel, that is, under the letter of the law, it deprived all men of eternal light. For then it could not give spiritual contemplation to men striving to strip themselves of a sensuality that is illusory, capable only of deceit, and able to perceive only decadent bodies like their own. But the word wills to be set upon a lamp stand, the Church, where rational worship is offered in the spirit, that it may enlighten all men. For the letter, when it is not spiritually understood, bears a carnal sense only, which restricts its expression and does not allow the real force of what is written to reach the hearer's mind.

Let us, then, not light the lamp by contemplation and action, only to put it under a bushel - that lamp, I mean, which is the enlightening word of knowledge - lest we be condemned for restricting by the letter the incomprehensible power of wisdom. Rather let us place it upon the lamp stand of holy Church, on the heights of true contemplation, where it may kindle for all men the light of divine teaching.


RESPONSORY          John 13:35, 36:9:39
Walk while you still have the light,
or the darkness will cover you.
- While you have the light,
believe in the light
so that you may become sons of light.

I came into the world
the make the blind see.
- While you have the light,
believe in the light
so that you may become sons of light.


COLLECT
May your grace, O Lord, we pray,
at all times go before us and follow after
and make us always determined
to carry out good works.
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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