Office of Readings
The Feast of St. Benedict
July 11
______
This Daily Office for the Feast of St. Benedict is largely the work of Tom Kostrzewa, using the Catholic Liturgy of the Hours.

Lord open our lips.
And our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

Holy God, Holy and Mighty, Holy Immortal One.
Have mercy on us (3x)

HYMN

O raise your voices, wake the world.
And let your song of praise be heard.
For both in town and desert waste
God's glory finds a dwelling place.

This servant heard within his heart
A call to leave his fam'ly hearth.
He heard, he answered, left his home
And gave away the goods he owned.

He gave his life to hear God's word
And then proclaim it to the world.
He listened, fasted, suffered, prayed
And stood in darkness undismayed.

He knew his weakness and his sin
And God's great mercy from within.
In knowing this and his own shame
He learnt to reach and heal great pain.

O praise the Father, wake the world!
And let the Son's own praise be heard!
And praise in town or desert waste
The Spirit glorified in grace. Amen.
Text: Ralph Wright, OSB, c. GIA Publications; Taken from "A Hymnal for the Hours"; Tune: Gratitude, Paul Bost, 1837


Invitatory (either here or at Morning Prayer)

Antiphon: Let us sing praise to the Lord, who has clothed our father Benedict in glory.


    95    Venite, exultemus
1
Come, let us sing to the LORD; *
     let us shout for joy to the Rock of our salvation.
2
Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving *
     and raise a loud shout to him with Psalm.
3
For the LORD is a great God, *
     and a great King above all gods.
4
In his hand are the caverns of the earth, *
     and the heights of the hills are his also.
5
The sea is his, for he made it, *
     and his hands have molded the dry land.
6
Come, let us bow down, and bend the knee, *
     and kneel before the LORD our Maker.
7
For he is our God,
     Tand we are the people of his pasture and the sheep of his hand. *
8
Today, if you would hear his voice *
     Harden not your hearts.
Antiphon: Let us sing praise to the Lord, who has clothed our father Benedict in glory.

The Psalter

Ant. 1: Because of his holy Rule and way of life, / the Lord has made him a leader and teacher of monks and nuns.


    21:1-7,14    Domine, in virtute tua
1
The king rejoices in your strength, O LORD; *
     how greatly he exults in your victory!
2
You have given him his heart's desire; *
     you have not denied him the request of his lips.
3
For you meet him with blessings of prosperity, *
     and set a crown of fine gold upon his head.
4
He asked you for life, and you gave it to him: *
     length of days, for ever and ever.
5
His honor is great, because of your victory; *
     splendor and majesty have you bestowed upon him.
6
For you will give him everlasting felicity *
     and will make him glad with the joy of your presence.
7
For the king puts his trust in the LORD; *
     because of the loving-kindness of the Most High, he will not fall.
14
Be exalted, O LORD, in your might; *
     we will sing and praise your power.

Ant. 1: Because of his holy Rule and way of life, / the Lord has made him a leader and teacher of monks and nuns.

Ant. 2: St. Benedict founded a school of the Lord's service, / so that we could follow the Lord's teachings.


    92    Bonum est confiteri
1
It is a good thing to give thanks to the LORD, *
     and to sing praises to your Name, O Most High;
2
To tell of your loving-kindness early in the morning *
     and of your faithfulness in the night season;
3
On the psaltery, and on the lyre, *
     and to the melody of the harp.
4
For you have made me glad by your acts, O LORD; *
     and I shout for joy because of the works of your hands.
5
LORD, how great are your works! *
     your thoughts are very deep.
6
The dullard does not know,
nor does the fool understand, *
     that though the wicked grow like weeds,
     and all the workers of iniquity flourish,
7
They flourish only to be destroyed for ever; *
     but you, O LORD, are exalted for evermore.
Ant. 2: St. Benedict founded a school of the Lord's service, / so that we could follow the Lord's teachings.

Ant. 3: One night while he was in prayer, / St. Benedict saw all of creation in one ray of the sun.

8
For lo, your enemies, O LORD,
lo, your enemies shall perish, *
     and all the workers of iniquity shall be scattered.
9
But my horn you have exalted like the horns of wild bulls; *
     I am anointed with fresh oil.
10
My eyes also gloat over my enemies, *
     and my ears rejoice to hear the doom of the wicked who rise up
                                against me.
11
The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree, *
     and shall spread abroad like a cedar of Lebanon.
12
Those who are planted in the house of the LORD *
     shall flourish in the courts of our God;
13
They shall still bear fruit in old age; *
     they shall be green and succulent;
14
That they may show how upright the LORD is, *
     my Rock, in whom there is no fault.

 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.


Ant. 3: One night while he was in prayer, / St. Benedict saw all of creation in one ray of the sun.




First Reading

Sirach 45:1-6

Moses, whose memory is blessed,
    was beloved by God and people.
He made him equal in glory to the holy ones,
   and made him great, to the terror of his enemies.
By his words he performed swift miracles;
   the Lord glorified him in the presence of kings.
He gave him commandments for his people,
   and revealed to him his glory.
For his faithfulness and meekness he consecrated him,
   choosing him out of all humankind.
He allowed him to hear his voice,
   and led him into the dark cloud,
and gave him the commandments face to face,
   the law of life and knowledge,
so that he might teach Jacob the covenant,
   and Israel his decrees.

Responsory

What can be sweeter to us than the voice of the Lord inviting us?
- Behold, in his loving mercy the Lord shows us the way of life.
Let us therefore gird our loins with faith and the performance of good works,
so that we may merit to see him who has called us into his kingdom.
- Behold, in his loving mercy the Lord shows us the way of life.

2nd Reading -
From a homily by Blessed Guerric of Igny (One of the choices
found in A Word In Season)

Through his faith and gentleness the Lord sanctified him. These words were written of Moses, but they may today be applied not unfittingly, I think, to blessed Benedict. For since he was filled with the Spirit of all the saints, it is reasonable to believe that he had not a little of Moses' spirit. If the Lord took some of the spirit of Moses and put it upon the whole group of elders who assisted him and were chosen to share his ministry, how much more must he have put that spirit on a man who more truly and more spiritually carried out every ministry in its fullness? Moses led those who came forth from Egypt; Benedict was leader of those who forsook the world. Moses was a legislator: so was Benedict. Moses was minister only of the letter that kills; Benedict was minister of the spirit that gives life. Moses wrote much that is difficult to understand and inapplicable today or impossible to put into practice; Benedict is the author of a very sound rule of life that is clearly written and remarkable for its discretion. Finally, the leader of the children of Israel did not bring into the promised rest those he had led out of Egypt. Our leader, as the standard bearer of an army of monks, has gone before us by the straight way, the way stretching east, into the kingdom of heaven. It is therefore not unreasonable to think that he equaled in merit one whom he actually surpassed in ministry. Nor does it seem unfitting to apply to him what scripture says of Moses: Though his faith and gentleness the Lord sanctified him, especially since Benedict, who lived what he taught, teaches us those two virtues in particular.

Brethren, (Or brothers and sisters) it is the command of our gentle and peace-making Master that we should be at peace with one another. Yet before that he says: Have salt in yourselves. He knows well that peaceful gentleness nourishes vices unless the severity of zeal has first sprinkled them with the sharp taste of salt, just as mild weather causes meat to grow wormy unless the heat of salt has dried it out. Therefore be at peace with one another, but let it be a peace that is seasoned with the salt of wisdom; try to acquire gentleness, but let it be a gentleness filled with the warmth of faith.

Responsory

At midnight, when the man of God was keeping watch and praying,
- he saw the whole world gathered as though into one sunbeam.
To one who sees the Creator all creatures are as nothing.
- He saw the whole world gathered as though into one sunbeam.

Te Deum Laudamus

You are God: we praise you;
You are the Lord; we acclaim you;
You are the eternal Father:
All creation worships you.
To you all angels, all the powers of heaven,
Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise:
Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might,
heaven and earth are full of your glory.
The glorious company of apostles praise you.
The noble fellowship of prophets praise you.
The white-robed army of martyrs praise you.
Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you;
Father, of majesty unbounded,
your true and only Son, worthy of all worship,
and the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide.

You, Christ, are the king of glory,
the eternal Son of the Father.
When you became man to set us free
you did not shun the Virgin's womb.
You overcame the sting of death
and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers.
You are seated at God's right hand in glory.
We believe that you will come and be our judge.
Come then, Lord, and help your people,
bought with the price of your own blood,
and bring us with your saints
to glory everlasting.
 

Concluding Prayer (Taken from "Proclaiming All Your Wonders")

We thank you God of love, for our Father, St. Benedict.
He sought you and kept vigil in your presence.
You have called us to walk in his footsteps.
May our hearts be in harmony with the praise of our lips,
through Jesus Christ, our Lord. 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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