Universalis
Monday 8 February 2016    (other days)
Saint Jerome Emilian 
 or Monday of week 5 in Ordinary Time 
 or Saint Josephine Bakhita, Virgin 

Office of Readings

If this is the first Hour that you are reciting today, you should precede it with the Invitatory Psalm.


INTRODUCTION
O God, come to our aid.
  O Lord, make haste to help us.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
  as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
  world without end.
Amen. Alleluia.

Hymn
O God of truth, prepare our minds
To hear and heed your holy word;
Fill every heart that longs for you
With your mysterious presence, Lord.
Almighty Father, with your Son
And blessed Spirit, hear our prayer:
Teach us to love eternal truth
And seek its freedom everywhere.
Stanbrook Abbey Hymnal

Psalm 6
A prayer for relief from affliction
Lord, save me in your merciful love.
Lord, do not condemn me in your fury:
  do not destroy me in your anger.
Take pity on me, Lord, for I am sick;
  heal me, Lord, for my bones are in disarray.
My spirit is deeply disturbed,
  and you, Lord – how long?
Turn to me, Lord, rescue my spirit:
  in your pity, save me.
If I die, how can I praise you?
  Can anyone in the underworld proclaim your name?
I struggle and groan,
  soak my bed with weeping night after night;
my eyes are troubled with sadness:
  I grow older as my enemies watch.
Leave me, all who do evil,
  for the Lord has heard my voice as I wept.
The Lord listened to my prayer,
  granted me what I asked.
Let my enemies be ashamed and confounded:
  let shame and confusion overtake them soon.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
  as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
  world without end.
Amen.
Lord, save me in your merciful love.

Psalm 9A (9)
Thanksgiving for victory
The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed in times of distress.
I will thank you, Lord, with all my heart;
  I will tell of your wonders.
I will rejoice in you and triumph,
  make music to your name, O Most High.
Because my enemies are in full retreat;
  they stumble and perish at your presence.
For you have given judgement in my favour,
  upheld my case,
  taken your seat on the throne of judgement.
You have rebuked the nations,
  condemned the wicked,
  wiped out their name for ever and for ever.
My enemies are no more;
  their land is a desert for ever.
You have demolished their cities,
  their very memory is wiped away.
But the Lord will reign for ever:
  he has made his throne his judgement-seat.
He himself will judge the whole world in justice,
  judge the peoples impartially.
The Lord will be a refuge for the oppressed,
  a refuge in good times and in bad.
Let them put their hope in you, those who know your name;
  for you, Lord, have never abandoned those who seek you.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
  as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
  world without end.
Amen.
The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed in times of distress.

Psalm 9A (9)
I will recount all your praise at the gates of the city of Sion.
Sing to the Lord who dwells in Zion,
  proclaim to the nations his loving care.
For he has remembered the poor and avenged them with blood:
  he has not forgotten the cry of the weak.
Take pity on me, Lord:
  see how my enemies torment me.
You raise me up from the gates of death,
  and I will proclaim your praise at the gates of the daughter of Zion;
  I will rejoice in your salvation.
The nations have fallen into the pit that they made,
  into the very trap that they set: their feet are caught fast.
The Lord’s justice shines forth:
  the sinner is trapped by his very own action.
Sinners will go down to the underworld,
  and all nations that forget God.
For the weak will not always be forgotten:
  the hope of the weak will never perish.
Rise up, Lord, let men not be complacent:
  let the nations come before you to be judged.
Put fear into them, Lord:
  let them know that they are only men.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit,
  as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be,
  world without end.
Amen.
I will recount all your praise at the gates of the city of Sion.

Give me understanding, and I will follow your law.
I will keep it wholeheartedly.

First Reading
Galatians 1:13-2:10 ©
You must have heard of my career as a practising Jew, how merciless I was in persecuting the Church of God, how much damage I did to it, how I stood out among other Jews of my generation, and how enthusiastic I was for the traditions of my ancestors.
  Then God, who had specially chosen me while I was still in my mother’s womb, called me through his grace and chose to reveal his Son in me, so that I might preach the Good News about him to the pagans. I did not stop to discuss this with any human being, nor did I go up to Jerusalem to see those who were already apostles before me, but I went off to Arabia at once and later went straight back from there to Damascus. Even when after three years I went up to Jerusalem to visit Cephas and stayed with him for fifteen days, I did not see any of the other apostles; I only saw James, the brother of the Lord, and I swear before God that what I have just written is the literal truth. After that I went to Syria and Cilicia, and was still not known by sight to the churches of Christ in Judaea, who had heard nothing except that their one-time persecutor was now preaching the faith he had previously tried to destroy; and they gave glory to God for me.
  It was not till fourteen years had passed that I went up to Jerusalem again. I went with Barnabas and took Titus with me. I went there as the result of a revelation, and privately I laid before the leading men the Good News as I proclaim it among the pagans; I did so for fear the course I was adopting or had already adopted would not be allowed. And what happened? Even though Titus who had come with me is a Greek, he was not obliged to be circumcised. The question came up only because some who do not really belong to the brotherhood have furtively crept in to spy on the liberty we enjoy in Christ Jesus, and want to reduce us all to slavery. I was so determined to safeguard for you the true meaning of the Good News, that I refused even out of deference to yield to such people for one moment. As a result, these people who are acknowledged leaders – not that their importance matters to me, since God has no favourites – these leaders, as I say, had nothing to add to the Good News as I preach it. On the contrary, they recognised that I had been commissioned to preach the Good News to the uncircumcised just as Peter had been commissioned to preach it to the circumcised. The same person whose action had made Peter the apostle of the circumcised had given me a similar mission to the pagans. So, James, Cephas and John, these leaders, these pillars, shook hands with Barnabas and me as a sign of partnership: we were to go to the pagans and they to the circumcised. The only thing they insisted on was that we should remember to help the poor, as indeed I was anxious to do.
Responsory
By God’s grace I am what I am, and the grace he has shown me has not abandoned me nor has it been without fruit.
He whose power enabled Peter to become the apostle of the circumcised enabled me to become the apostle of the Gentiles, and the grace he has shown me has not abandoned me nor has it been without fruit.

Second Reading
From a letter to his brothers by Saint Jerome Emiliani
Place your trust in God alone
Sons of the Society of the Servants of the Poor, and dearly beloved brothers in Christ: Greetings from your poor father. I urge you to persevere in your love for Christ and your faithful observance of the law of Christ. In word and work I set an example for you when I was with you. And so the Lord is glorified in you through me.
  Our goal is God, the source of all good. As we say in our prayer, we are to place our trust in God and in no one else. In his kindness, our Lord wished to strengthen your faith, for without it, as the evangelist points out, Christ could not have performed many of his miracles. He also wished to listen to your prayer, and so he ordained that you experience poverty, distress, abandonment, weariness and universal scorn. It was also his desire to deprive you of my physical presence, even though I am with you in spirit as your poor, dear, beloved father.
  God alone knows the reasons for all this, yet we can recognise three causes. In the first place, our blessed Lord is telling you that he desires to include you among his beloved sons, provided that you remain steadfast in his ways, for this is the way he treats his friends and makes them holy.
  The second reason is that he is asking you to grow continually in your confidence in him alone and not in others. For God, as I said before, does not work in those who refuse to place all their confidence and hope in him alone. But he does impart the fullness of his love upon those who possess a deep faith and hope; for them he does great things. So if you have been endowed with faith and hope, he will do great things for you; he will raise up the lowly. In depriving you of myself and everyone else you have loved, he will offer you an opportunity to choose one of these alternatives: either you will forsake your faith and return to the ways of the world, or you will remain steadfast in your faith and pass the test.
  Now there is a third reason. God wishes to test you like gold in the furnace. The dross is consumed by the fire, but the pure gold remains and its value increases. It is in this manner that God acts with his good servant, who puts his hope in him and remains unshaken in times of distress. God raises him up and, in return for the things he has left out of love for God, he repays him a hundredfold in this life and with eternal life hereafter.
  This is the way God has dealt with all the saints. So it was with his people Israel after their period of trial in Egypt. He not only led them out of Egypt with many miracles and fed them with manna in the desert, he also gave them the promised land. If then you remain constant in faith in the face of trial, the Lord will give you peace and rest for a time in this world, and for ever in the next.
Responsory
Be one in thought and feeling: love the brothers, be compassionate and self-effacing: this is what you have been called to do, so that you may inherit a blessing.
Love each other as much as brothers should, and have a profound respect for each other. Work for the Lord with untiring effort and with great earnestness of spirit: this is what you have been called to do, so that you may inherit a blessing.

Let us pray.
Father of mercy, you chose Saint Jerome Emilian
  to be a father to orphans in their need.
Grant that through his prayer we may keep faithfully the spirit of sonship
  by which we are not only called, but really are your children.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
  who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
  one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

Let us praise the Lord.
– Thanks be to God.

The psalms and canticles here are our own translation. The Grail translation of the psalms, which is used liturgically in most of the English-speaking world, cannot be displayed on the Web for copyright reasons. The Universalis downloads do contain the Grail translation of the psalms.

You can also view this page in Latin and English.

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