Universalis
Wednesday 30 July 2014    (other days)
Wednesday of week 17 in Ordinary Time
 or Saint Peter Chrysologus, Bishop, Doctor

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
Bright as fire in darkness,
Sharper than a sword,
Lives throughout the ages
God’s eternal word.
Father, Son and Spirit,
Trinity of might,
Compassed in your glory,
Give the world your light.
Stanbrook Abbey Hymnal

Psalm 17 (18)
Thanksgiving for salvation and victory
I love you, Lord, my strength.
I will love you, Lord, my strength:
  Lord, you are my foundation and my refuge,
  you set me free.
My God is my help: I will put my hope in him,
  my protector, my sign of salvation,
  the one who raises me up.
I will call on the Lord – praise be to his name –
  and I will be saved from my enemies.
The waves of death flooded round me,
  the torrents of Belial tossed me about,
the cords of the underworld wound round me,
  death’s traps opened before me.
In my distress I called on the Lord,
  I cried out to my God:
from his temple he heard my voice,
  my cry to him came to his ears.
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 love you, Lord, my strength.

Psalm 17 (18)
The Lord saved me because he loved me.
The earth moved and shook,
  at the coming of his anger the roots of the mountains rocked
  and were shaken.
Smoke rose from his nostrils,
  consuming fire came from his mouth,
  from it came forth flaming coals.
He bowed down the heavens and descended,
  storm clouds were at his feet.
He rode on the cherubim and flew,
  he travelled on the wings of the wind.
He made dark clouds his covering;
  his dwelling-place, dark waters and clouds of the air.
The cloud-masses were split by his lightnings,
  hail fell, hail and coals of fire.
The Lord thundered from the heavens,
  the Most High let his voice be heard,
  with hail and coals of fire.
He shot his arrows and scattered them,
  hurled thunderbolts and threw them into confusion.
The depths of the oceans were laid bare,
  the foundations of the globe were revealed,
at the sound of your anger, O Lord,
  at the onset of the gale of your wrath.
He reached from on high and took me up,
  he lifted me from the many waters.
He snatched me from my powerful enemies,
  from those who hate me, for they were too strong for me.
They attacked me in my time of trouble,
  but the Lord was my support.
He led me to the open spaces,
  he was my deliverance, for he held me in favour.
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 saved me because he loved me.

Psalm 17 (18)
You, O Lord, are my lamp, my God who lightens my darkness.
The Lord rewards me according to my uprightness,
  he repays me according to the purity of my hands,
for I have kept to the paths of the Lord
  and have not departed wickedly from my God.
For I keep all his decrees in my sight,
  and I will not reject his judgements;
I am stainless before him,
  I have kept myself away from evil.
And so the Lord has rewarded me according to my uprightness,
  according to the purity of my hands in his sight.
You will be holy with the holy,
  kind with the kind,
with the chosen you will be chosen,
  but with the crooked you will show your cunning.
For you will bring salvation to a lowly people
  but make the proud ashamed.
For you light my lamp, O Lord;
  my God brings light to my darkness.
For with you I will attack the enemy’s squadrons;
  with my God I will leap over their wall.
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.
You, O Lord, are my lamp, my God who lightens my darkness.

All were astonished by the gracious words
that came from his lips.

First Reading
2 Corinthians 10:1-11:6 ©
This is a personal matter; this is Paul himself appealing to you by the gentleness and patience of Christ – I, the man who is so humble when he is facing you, but bullies you when he is at a distance. I only ask that I do not have to bully you when I come, with all the confident assurance I mean to show when I come face to face with people I could name who think we go by ordinary human motives. We live in the flesh, of course, but the muscles that we fight with are not flesh. Our war is not fought with weapons of flesh, yet they are strong enough, in God’s cause, to demolish fortresses. We demolish sophistries, and the arrogance that tries to resist the knowledge of God; every thought is our prisoner, captured to be brought into obedience to Christ. Once you have given your complete obedience, we are prepared to punish any disobedience.
  Face plain facts. Anybody who is convinced that he belongs to Christ must go on to reflect that we all belong to Christ no less than he does. Maybe I do boast rather too much about our authority, but the Lord gave it to me for building you up and not for pulling you down, and I shall not be ashamed of it. I do not want you to think of me as someone who only frightens you by letter. Someone said, ‘He writes powerful and strongly-worded letters but when he is with you you see only half a man and no preacher at all.’ The man who said that can remember this: whatever we are like in the words of our letters when we are absent, that is what we shall be like in our actions when we are present.
  We are not being so bold as to rank ourselves, or invite comparison, with certain people who write their own references. Measuring themselves against themselves, and comparing themselves to themselves, they are simply foolish. We, on the other hand, are not going to boast without a standard to measure against: taking for our measure the yardstick which God gave us to measure with, which is long enough to reach to you. We are not stretching further than we ought; otherwise we should not have reached you, as we did come all the way to you with the gospel of Christ. So we are not boasting without any measure, about work that was done by other people; in fact, we trust that, as your faith grows, we shall get taller and taller, when judged by our own standard. I mean, we shall be carrying the gospel to places far beyond you, without encroaching on anyone else’s field, not boasting of the work already done. If anyone wants to boast, let him boast of the Lord. It is not the man who commends himself that can be accepted, but the man who is commended by the Lord.
  I only wish you were able to tolerate a little foolishness from me. But of course: you are tolerant towards me. You see, the jealousy that I feel for you is God’s own jealousy: I arranged for you to marry Christ so that I might give you away as a chaste virgin to this one husband. But the serpent, with his cunning, seduced Eve, and I am afraid that in the same way your ideas may get corrupted and turned away from simple devotion to Christ. Because any new-comer has only to proclaim a new Jesus, different from the one that we preached, or you have only to receive a new spirit, different from the one you have already received, or a new gospel, different from the one you have already accepted – and you welcome it with open arms. As far as I can tell, these arch-apostles have nothing more than I have. I may not be a polished speechmaker, but as for knowledge, that is a different matter; surely we have made this plain, speaking on every subject in front of all of you.
Responsory
Although we live in the world, we do not fight from worldly motives. The weapons of our warfare are not merely human weapons.
We take up the shield of faith and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. The weapons of our warfare are not merely human weapons.

Second Reading
From the Instructions to Catechumens by St Cyril of Jerusalem
The Church, the assembly of God's people
The Catholic, or universal, Church gets her name from the fact that she is scattered through the whole world from the one end of the earth to the other, and also because she teaches universally and without omission all the doctrines which are to be made known to mankind, whether concerned with visible or invisible things, with heavenly or earthly things. Then again because she teaches one way of worship to all men, nobles or commoners, learned or simple; finally because she universally cures and heals every sort of sin which is committed by soul and body. Moreover there is in her every kind of virtue in words and deeds and spiritual gifts of every sort.
  The Church, that is, the assembly, is designated by this apt term, because it assembles all and brings them together, as the Lord says in Leviticus: Assemble all the congregation at the door of the tent of meeting. Moreover it is worth noting that this word ‘assemble’ is first used in scripture in the place where the Lord appointed Aaron to the high priesthood. And in Deuteronomy God says to Moses: Assemble the people that they may hear my words, that they may learn to fear me. He mentions the Church or assembly again when he speaks of the tables of the law. In them were written all the words which the Lord spoke with you on the mountain, out of the midst of the fire, on the day of the Church or assembly – or to put it more clearly, On the day on which you were called by the Lord and assembled together. The psalmist also says: I will give you thanks, O Lord, in the great Church, in the gathering of the throng I will praise you.
  Earlier the psalmist had sung: Bless the Lord in the Church, bless God, you who are Israel’s sons. The second Church the Saviour built from the Gentiles, our holy Church of the Christians, of which he said to Peter: On this rock I will build my Church, and the powers of death shall not prevail against it.
  After the particular Church of Judea was repudiated, many Churches of Christ are now multiplied throughout the whole world, of which it is written in the psalms: Sing to the Lord a new song, let his praise be in the Church of the saints. Echoing this the prophet said to the Jews: I have no pleasure in you, says the Lord of Hosts and immediately adds, For from the rising of the sun to its setting my name is great among the nations. About the same holy Catholic Church Paul writes to Timothy: That you may know how one ought to live in the household of God, which is the Church of the living God, the pillar and bulwark of the truth.
Responsory
You are a chosen race, a dedicated nation, a people chosen by God for his own to proclaim the triumphs of him who called you out of darkness into his marvellous light.
Once you were not his people, but now you are the people of God, a people chosen by God for his own to proclaim the triumphs of him who called you out of darkness into his marvellous light.

Let us pray.
Lord God, protector of those who hope in you,
  without whom nothing is strong, nothing holy,
  support us always with your love.
Guide us so to use the good things of this world,
  that even now we may hold fast to what endures for ever.
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.

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