Universalis
Saturday 1 August 2015    (other days)
Saint Alphonsus Mary de Liguori, Bishop, Doctor
 (Saturday of week 17 in Ordinary Time)

Office of Readings

If you have already recited the Invitatory Psalm today, you should use the alternative opening.


Lord, open our lips.
  And we shall praise your name.
Invitatory PsalmPsalm 66 (67)
The Lord is the source of all wisdom: come, let us adore him.
(repeat antiphon*)
O God, take pity on us and bless us,
  and let your face shine upon us,
so that your ways may be known across the world,
  and all nations learn of your salvation.
(repeat antiphon*)
Let the peoples praise you, O God,
  let all the peoples praise you.
Let the nations be glad and rejoice,
  for you judge the peoples with fairness
  and you guide the nations of the earth.
(repeat antiphon*)
Let the peoples praise you, O God,
  let all the peoples praise you.
The earth has produced its harvest:
  may God, our God, bless us.
May God bless us,
  may the whole world revere him.
(repeat antiphon*)
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 the source of all wisdom: come, let us adore him.*

* If you are reciting this on your own, you can choose to say the antiphon once only at the start of the psalm and not repeat it.


Hymn
How great the tale, that there should be,
In God’s Son’s heart, a place for me!
That on a sinner’s lips like mine
The cross of Jesus Christ should shine!
Christ Jesus, bend me to thy will,
My feet to urge, my griefs to still;
That e’en my flesh and blood may be
A temple sanctified to Thee.
No rest, no calm my soul may win,
Because my body craves to sin;
Till thou, dear Lord, thyself impart
Peace on my head, light in my heart.
May consecration come from far,
Soft shining like the evening star.
My toilsome path make plain to me,
Until I come to rest in thee.

Psalm 130 (131)
Childlike trust in God
Whoever humbles himself like a little child will be greater in the kingdom of heaven.
Lord, I do not puff myself up or stare about,
  or walk among the great or seek wonders beyond me.
Truly calm and quiet I have made my spirit:
  quiet as a weaned child in its mother’s arms –
  like an infant is my soul.
Let Israel hope in the Lord, now and for all time.
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.
Whoever humbles himself like a little child will be greater in the kingdom of heaven.

Psalm 131 (132)
God's promise to the house of David
With an honest heart I have offered up all things joyfully, O my God.
Lord, remember David
  and how he served you.
He swore to the Lord,
  vowed a vow to the Mighty One of Jacob:
“I will not go into my tent, my home,
  nor go up to my bed of rest;
I will not let my eyes sleep
  or my eyelids grow heavy
until I have found a place for the Lord,
  a dwelling-place for the Mighty One of Jacob.”
We heard that it was in Ephratha,
  we found it in the plains of Jaar.
So let us go into his dwelling-place
  and let us worship before his footstool.
Rise up, Lord, and come to your place of rest.
  Come with the Ark of your power.
Let your priests be robed in your justice,
  and let your chosen ones rejoice.
Remember what David did for you,
  and do not turn your face from your Anointed.
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.
With an honest heart I have offered up all things joyfully, O my God.

Psalm 131 (132)
The Lord swore an oath to David and he will not go back on his word; he made his kingdom firm for ever.
The Lord swore David a true oath,
  he will not go back on his word:
“The fruit of your body
  I will place on your throne.
If your children keep my covenant and the commands I teach them,
  their children’s children will occupy your throne for ever.”
For the Lord has chosen Zion,
  taken it for his dwelling-place:
“Here will I take my rest for all time:
  here will I live, such is my desire.
I will bless its crops with my blessing,
  I will fill its poor with bread.
I will clothe its priests with righteousness.
  Its chosen ones will exult with joy.
There will I plant the sign of David,
  and prepare a lamp for my anointed one.
I will wrap his enemies in confusion,
  but over his head my crown will shine.
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 swore an oath to David and he will not go back on his word; he made his kingdom firm for ever.

Come and see the works of the Lord,
who has done wonders on the earth.

First Reading
2 Corinthians 12:14-13:13 ©
I am all prepared now to come to you for the third time, and I am not going to be a burden on you: it is you I want, not your possessions. Children are not expected to save up for their parents, but parents for children. I am perfectly willing to spend what I have, and to be expended, in the interests of your souls. Because I love you more, must I be loved the less?
  All very well, you say: I personally put no pressure on you, but like the cunning fellow that I am, I took you in by a trick. So we exploited you, did we, through one of the men that I have sent to you? Well, Titus went at my urging, and I sent the brother that came with him. Can Titus have exploited you? You know that he and I have always been guided by the same spirit and trodden in the same tracks.
  All this time you have been thinking that our defence is addressed to you, but it is before God that we, in Christ, are speaking; and it is all, my dear brothers, for your benefit. What I am afraid of is that when I come I may find you different from what I want you to be, and you may find that I am not as you would like me to be; and then there will be wrangling, jealousy, and tempers roused, intrigues and backbiting and gossip, obstinacies and disorder. I am afraid that on my next visit, my God may make me ashamed on your account and I shall be grieving over all those who sinned before and have still not repented of the impurities, fornication and debauchery they committed.
  This will be the third time I have come to you. The evidence of three, or at least two, witnesses is necessary to sustain the charge. I gave warning when I was with you the second time and I give warning now, too, before I come, to those who sinned before and to any others, that when I come again, I shall have no mercy. You want proof, you say, that it is Christ speaking in me: you have known him not as a weakling, but as a power among you? Yes, but he was crucified through weakness, and still he lives now through the power of God. So then, we are weak, as he was, but we shall live with him, through the power of God, for your benefit.
  Examine yourselves to make sure you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you acknowledge that Jesus Christ is really in you? If not, you have failed the test, but we, as I hope you will come to see, have not failed it. We pray to God that you will do nothing wrong: not that we want to appear as the ones who have been successful – we would rather that you did well even though we failed. We have no power to resist the truth; only to further it. We are only too glad to be weak provided you are strong. What we ask in our prayers is for you to be made perfect. That is why I am writing this from a distance, so that when I am with you I shall not need to be strict, with the authority which the Lord gave me for building up and not for destroying.
  In the meantime, brothers, we wish you happiness; try to grow perfect; help one another. Be united; live in peace, and the God of love and peace will be with you.
  Greet one another with the holy kiss. All the saints send you greetings.
  The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
Responsory
Farewell, my brothers. Strive for perfection and live in peace, and the God of love and peace will be with you.
May God’s peace, which is far beyond human understanding, keep your hearts and minds safe, in union with Christ Jesus. And the God of love and peace will be with you.

Second Reading
From a sermon by Saint Alphonsus Liguori, bishop
On the love of Christ
All holiness and perfection of soul lies in our love for Jesus Christ our God, who is our Redeemer and our supreme good. It is part of the love of God to acquire and to nurture all the virtues which make a man perfect.
  Has not God in fact won for himself a claim on all our love? From all eternity he has loved us. And it is in this vein that he speaks to us: “O man, consider carefully that I first loved you. You had not yet appeared in the light of day, nor did the world yet exist, but already I loved you. From all eternity I have loved you.”
  Since God knew that man is enticed by favours, he wished to bind him to his love by means of his gifts: “I want to catch men with the snares, those chains of love in which they allow themselves to be entrapped, so that they will love me.” And all the gifts which he bestowed on man were given to this end. He gave him a soul, made in his likeness, and endowed with memory, intellect and will; he gave him a body equipped with the senses; it was for him that he created heaven and earth and such an abundance of things. He made all these things out of love for man, so that all creation might serve man, and man in turn might love God out of gratitude for so many gifts.
  But he did not wish to give us only beautiful creatures; the truth is that to win for himself our love, he went so far as to bestow upon us the fullness of himself. The eternal Father went so far as to give us his only Son. When he saw that we were all dead through sin and deprived of his grace, what did he do? Compelled, as the Apostle says, by the superabundance of his love for us, he sent his beloved Son to make reparation for us and to call us back to a sinless life.
  By giving us his Son, whom he did not spare precisely so that he might spare us, he bestowed on us at once every good: grace, love and heaven; for all these goods are certainly inferior to the Son: He who did not spare his own Son, but handed him over for all of us: how could he fail to give us along with his Son all good things?
Responsory
The Lord grants the desires of those who fear him, he hears their cry and he saves them. The Lord protects all who love him.
A child of God does not commit sin, because the divine seed remains in him. The Lord protects all who love him.

Let us pray.
Lord God,
  you never cease to give new saints to your Church
  as a pattern for holy living.
Help us to imitate Saint Alphonsus in his zeal for souls,
  that we may share his reward in heaven.
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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