Reading for the Memorial of
Sts. Cornelius and Cyprian
Pope and Martyrs
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From the Common of Martyrs: For Several Martyrs, or from the Common of Pastors: For a Bishop.


COLLECT
Deus, qui populo tuo beatos Cornelium et Cyprianum sedulos pastores et invictos martyres praestitisti, concede ut, eorum intercessione, fide et constantia roboremur, et pro Ecclesiae unitate operam tribuamus impense.
O God, who gave Saints Cornelius and Cyprian to your people
as diligent shepherds and valiant Martyrs,
grant that through their intercession
we may be strengthened in faith and constancy
and spend ourselves without reserve
for the unity of the Church.
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.


FIRST READING          2 Corinthians 4:7-15
Brothers and sisters:
We hold this treasure in earthen vessels,
that the surpassing power may be of God and not from us.
We are afflicted in every way, but not constrained;
perplexed, but not driven to despair;
persecuted, but not abandoned;
struck down, but not destroyed;
always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus,
so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our body.
For we who live are constantly being given up to death
for the sake of Jesus,
so that the life of Jesus may be manifested in our mortal flesh.

So death is at work in us, but life in you.
Since, then, we have the same spirit of faith,
according to what is written, I believed, therefore I spoke,
we too believe and therefore speak,
knowing that the one who raised the Lord Jesus
will raise us also with Jesus
and place us with you in his presence.
Everything indeed is for you,
so that the grace bestowed in abundance on more and more people
may cause the thanksgiving to overflow for the glory of God.


RESPONSORIAL PSALM          126:1bc-2ab, 2cd-3, 4-5, 6
Qui seminant in lacrimis, in exsultatione metent.

R. Those who sow in tears shall reap rejoicing.
When the LORD brought back the captives of Zion,
we were like men dreaming.
Then our mouth was filled with laughter,
and our tongue with rejoicing.
R. Those who sow in tears shall reap rejoicing.
Then they said among the nations,
“The LORD has done great things for them.”
The LORD has done great things for us;
we are glad indeed.
R. Those who sow in tears shall reap rejoicing.
Restore our fortunes, O LORD,
like the torrents in the southern desert.
Those that sow in tears
shall reap rejoicing.
R. Those who sow in tears shall reap rejoicing.
Although they go forth weeping,
carrying the seed to be sown,
They shall come back rejoicing,
carrying their sheaves.
R. Those who sow in tears shall reap rejoicing.


ALLELUIA          2 Cor 1:3b-4
Blessed be the Father of compassion and God of all encouragement,
who encourages us in our every affliction.


GOSPEL          Luke 22:24-30
Lifting up his eyes to heaven, Jesus prayed, saying:
“Holy Father, keep them in your name
that you have given me,
so that they may be one just as we are one.
When I was with them I protected them in your name that you gave me,
and I guarded them, and none of them was lost
except the son of destruction,
in order that the Scripture might be fulfilled.
But now I am coming to you.
I speak this in the world
so that they may share my joy completely.
I gave them your word, and the world hated them,
because they do not belong to the world
any more than I belong to the world.
I do not ask that you take them out of the world
but that you keep them from the Evil One.
They do not belong to the world
any more than I belong to the world.
Consecrate them in the truth.
Your word is truth.
As you sent me into the world,
so I sent them into the world.
And I consecrate myself for them,
so that they also may be consecrated in truth.”


PRAYER OVER THE OFFERINGS
Suscipe, quaesumus, Domine, munera populi tui pro martyrum tuorum passionibus dicata sanctorum, et quae beatis Cornelio et Cypriano in persecutione fortitudinem ministrarunt, nobis quoque praebeant inter adversa constantiam.
Receive, we pray, O Lord, the offerings of your people
in honor of the passion of your holy Martyrs
Saints Cornelius and Cyprian,
and may the gifts that gave them courage under persecution
make us, too, steadfast in all trials.
Through Christ our Lord.


PRAYER AFTER COMMUNION
Per haec mysteria quae sumpsimus, Domine, supplices exoramus, ut, beatorum martyrum Cornelii et Cypriani exemplo, spiritus tui fortitudine confirmati, evangelicae veritati possimus testimonium perhibere.
Through these mysteries which we have received,
we humbly beseech you, O Lord,
that by the example of the Martyrs
Saints Cornelius and Cyprian
we may be strengthened with the fortitude of your Spirit
to bear witness to the truth of the Gospel.
Through Christ our Lord.



The Liturgy of the Hours
Cornelius and Cyprian


From the Common of Several Martyrs, except the following:

Morning Prayer
BENEDICTUS (Canticle of Zechariah)
Antiphon: How precious is the death of those who purchased eternal life by shedding their blood.


COLLECT
O God, who gave Saints Cornelius and Cyprian to your people
as diligent shepherds and valiant Martyrs,
grant that through their intercession
we may be strengthened in faith and constancy
and spend ourselves without reserve
for the unity of the Church.
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.


Evening Prayer
MAGNIFICAT (Canticle of Mary)
Antiphon: O blessed Church, the blood of martyrs has made you glorious.


COLLECT
O God, who gave Saints Cornelius and Cyprian to your people
as diligent shepherds and valiant Martyrs,
grant that through their intercession
we may be strengthened in faith and constancy
and spend ourselves without reserve
for the unity of the Church.
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.


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The Office of Readings


Either of the following readings may be read:

From a letter by St. Cyprian, bishop and martyr
(Epist. 60,1-2, 5: CSEL 3, 691-692.694-695)

A faith that is ready and unshaken

    Cyprian sends greetings to his brother Cornelius. My very dear brother, we have heard of the glorious witness given by your courageous faith. On learning of the honor you had won by your witness, we were filled with such joy that we felt ourselves sharers and companions in your praiseworthy achievements. After all, we have the same Church, the same mind, the same unbroken harmony. Why then should a priest not take pride in the praise given to a fellow priest as though it were given to him? What brotherhood fails to rejoice in the happiness of its brothers wherever they are?

     Words cannot express how great was the exultation and delight here when we heard of your good fortune and brave deeds: how you stood out as a leader of your brothers in their declaration of their faith. You led the way to glory, but you gained many companions in that glory; being foremost in your readiness to bear witness on behalf of all, you prevailed on your people to become a single witness. We cannot decide which we ought to praise, your own ready and unshaken faith or the love of your brothers who would not leave you. While the courage of the bishop who thus led the way has been demonstrated, at the same time the unity of the brotherhood who followed has been manifested. Since you have one heart and one voice, it is the Roman Church as a whole that has thus borne witness.

     Dearest brother, bright and shining is the faith which the blessed Apostle praised in your community. He foresaw in the spirit the praise your courage deserves and the strength that could not be broken; he was heralding the future when he testified to your achievements; his praise of the fathers was a challenge to the sons. You unity, your strength have become shining examples of these virtues to the rest of the brethren.

     Divine providence has now prepared us. God's merciful design has warned us that the day of our own struggle, our own contest, is at hand. By that shared love which binds us closely together, we are doing all we can to exhort our congregation, to give ourselves unceasingly to fasting, vigils and prayers in common. These are the heavenly weapons which give us the strength to stand firm and endure; they are the spiritual defenses, the God-given armaments that protect us.

     Let us then remember one another, united in mind and heart. Let us pray without ceasing, you for us, we for you; by the love we share we shall thus relieve the strain of these great trials.





From the proconsular Acts of the martyrdom of Saint Cyprian, bishop
(Acta, 3-6: CSEL 3, 112-114)

In such a just cause there is no need for deliberation

     On the morning of the fourteenth of September a great crowd gathered at the Villa Sexti, in accordance with the order of the governor Galerius Maximus. That same day the governor commanded Bishop Cyprian to be brought before him for trial in the court of Sauciolum. After Cyprian was brought in, the governor asked him: "Are you Thascius Cyprian?" And the bishop replied: "Yes, I am." The governor Galerius Maximus said: "Have you posed as the pontiff of a sacrilegious group?" The bishop answered: "I have," Then the governor said: "Our most venerable emperors have commanded you to perform the religious rites." Bishop Cyprian replied: "I will not do so." Galerius Maximus said: "Consider your position." Cyprian replied: "Follow your orders. In such a just cause there is no need for deliberation."

     Then Galerius Maximus, after consulting with his council, reluctantly issued the following judgment: "You have long lived with your sacrilegious convictions, and you have gathered about yourself many others in a vicious conspiracy. You have set yourself up as an enemy of the gods of Rome and our religious practices. The pious and venerable emperors, the Augusti, Valerian and Gallienus, and Valerian the most noble of Caesars, have been unable to draw you back to the observance of their holy ceremonies. You have been discovered as the author and leader of these heinous crimes, and will consequently be held forth as an example for all those who have follow you in your crime. By your blood the law shall be confirmed." Next he read the sentence from a tablet: "It is decided that Thascius Cyprian should die by the sword." Cyprian responded: "Thanks be to God!"

     After the sentence was passed, a crowd of his fellow Christians said: "We should also be killed with him!" There arose an uproar among the Christians, and a great mob followed after him. Cyprian was then brought out to the grounds of the Villa Sexti, where, taking off his outer cloak and kneeling on the ground, he fell before the Lord in prayer. He removed his dalmatic and gave it to the deacons, and then stood erect while waiting for the executioner. When the executioner arrived, Cyprian told his friends to give the man twenty-five gold pieces. Cloths and napkins were being spread out in front of him by the brethren. Then the blessed Cyprian covered his eyes with his own hands, but when he was unable to tie the ends of the linen himself, the priest Julian and the sub-deacon Julian fastened them for him.

     In this way the blessed Cyprian suffered, and his body was laid out at a nearby place to satisfy the curiosity of the pagans. During the night Cyprian's body was triumphantly borne away in a procession of Christians who, praying and bearing tapers and torches, carried the body to the cemetery of the governor Macrobius Candidianus which lies on the Mappalian Way near the fish ponds. Not many days later the governor Galerius Maximus died.

     The most blessed martyr Cyprian suffered on the fourteenth of September under the emperors Valerian and Gallienus, in the reign of our true Lord Jesus Christ, to whom belong honor and glory for ever. Amen.


RESPONSORY

We are warriors now, fighting on the battlefield of faith, and God sees all we do;
the angels watch and so does Christ.
 - What honor and glory and joy, to do battle in the presence of God
and to have Christ approve our victory.

Let us arm ourselves in full strength
and prepare ourselves for the ultimate struggle
with blameless hearts, true faith and unyielding courage.
 - What honor and glory and joy, to do battle in the presence of God
and to have Christ approve our victory.


COLLECT
O God, who gave Saints Cornelius and Cyprian to your people
as diligent shepherds and valiant Martyrs,
grant that through their intercession
we may be strengthened in faith and constancy
and spend ourselves without reserve
for the unity of the Church.
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.


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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