Readings
for the Memorial of

St. Damasus I
Pope
December 11



MASS


From the Common of Pastors: For a Pope


COLLECT
Praesta, quaesumus, Domine, ut martyrum tuorum iugiter merita celebremus, quorum exstitit beatus Damasus papa cultor et amator.
Grant, we pray, O Lord,
that we may constantly exalt the merits of your Martyrs,
whom Pope Saint Damasus so venerated and loved.
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          Acts 20:17-18a,28-32,36
From Miletus Paul had the presbyters
of the Church at Ephesus summoned.
When they came to him, he addressed them,
"Keep watch over yourselves and over the whole flock
of which the Holy Spirit has appointed you overseers,
in which you tend the Church of God
that he acquired with his own Blood.
I know that after my departure savage wolves will come among you,
and they will not spare the flock.
And from your own group,
men will come forward perverting the truth
to draw the disciples away after them.
So be vigilant and remember that for three years, night and day,
I unceasingly admonished each of you with tears.
And now I commend you to God
and to that gracious word of his that can build you up
and give you the inheritance among all who are consecrated."

When he had finished speaking
he knelt down and prayed with them all.


RESPONSORIAL PSALM          Psalm 110:1, 2, 3, 4
Tu es sacerdos in aeternum secundum ordinem Melchisedech.

R. (4b) You are a priest for ever, in the line of Melchizedek.
The LORD said to my Lord:
"Sit at my right hand till I make your enemies your footstool."
R. You are a priest for ever, in the line of Melchizedek.
The scepter of your power the LORD will stretch forth from Zion:
"Rule in the midst of your enemies."
R. You are a priest for ever, in the line of Melchizedek.
"Yours is princely power in the day of your birth,
in holy splendor; before the daystar, like the dew,
I have begotten you."
R. You are a priest for ever, in the line of Melchizedek.
The LORD has sworn, and he will not repent:
"You are a priest forever,
according to the order of Melchizedek."
R. You are a priest for ever, in the line of Melchizedek.


ALLELUIA           John 15:15b
Vos dixi amicos, dicit Dominus, quia omnia quae audivi a Patre meo, nota feci vobis.
I call you my friends, says the Lord,
for I have made known to you all that the Father has told me.


GOSPEL          John 15:9-17
Jesus said to his disciples:
"As the Father loves me, so I also love you.
Remain in my love.
If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love,
just as I have kept my Father's commandments
and remain in his love.

"I have told you this so that my joy might be in you
and your joy might be complete.
This is my commandment: love one another as I love you.
No one has greater love than this,
to lay down one's life for one's friends.
You are my friends if you do what I command you.
I no longer call you slaves,
because a slave does not know what his master is doing.
I have called you friends,
because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father.
It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you
and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain,
so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you.
This I command you: love one another."


The Liturgy of the Hours
Damasus I


From the Common of Pastors; except the following

Office of Readings

The treatise of St Augustine against Faustus

We celebrate the martyrs with love and fellowship
We, the Christian community, assemble to celebrate the memory of the martyrs with ritual solemnity because we want to be inspired to follow their example, share in their merits, and be helped by their prayers. Yet we erect no altars to any of the martyrs, even in the martyrs’ burial chapels themselves.

No bishop, when celebrating at an altar where these holy bodies rest, has ever said, “Peter, we make this offering to you,” or “Paul, to you,” or “Cyprian, to you.” No, what is offered is offered always to God, who crowned the martyrs. We offer in the chapels where the bodies of those he crowned rest, so the memories that cling to those places will stir our emotions and encourage us to greater love both for the martyrs whom we can imitate and for God whose grace enables us to do so.

So we venerate the martyrs with the same veneration of love and fellowship that we give to the holy men of God still with us. We sense that the hearts of these latter are just as ready to suffer death for the sake of the Gospel, and yet we feel more devotion toward those who have already emerged victorious from the struggle. We honour those who are fighting on the battlefield of this life here below, but we honour more confidently those who have already achieved the victor’s crown and live in heaven.

But the veneration strictly called “worship,” or latria, that is, the special homage belonging only to the divinity, is something we give and teach others to give to God alone. The offering of a sacrifice belongs to worship in this sense (that is why those who sacrifice to idols are called idol-worshippers), and we neither make nor tell others to make any such offering to any martyr, any holy soul, or any angel. If anyone among us falls into this error, he is corrected with words of sound doctrine and must then either mend his ways or else be shunned.

The saints themselves forbid anyone to offer them the worship they know is reserved for God, as is clear from the case of Paul and Barnabas. When the Lycaonians were so amazed by their miracles that they wanted to sacrifice to them as gods, the apostles tore their garments, declared that they were not gods, urged the people to believe them, and forbade them to worship them.

Yet the truths we teach are one thing, the abuses thrust upon us are another. There are commandments that we are bound to give; there are breaches of them that we are commanded to correct, but until we correct them we must of necessity put up with them.


RESPONSORY          Psalm 116:15; 34:21; see Judith 10:3
Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his faithful ones;
- their very bones are dear to him,
not one of them shall be broken.

The Lord clothes them with gladness.
- Their very bones are dear to him,
not one of them shall be broken.


COLLECT
Grant, we pray, O Lord,
that we may constantly exalt the merits of your Martyrs,
whom Pope Saint Damasus so venerated and loved.
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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