Universalis
Saturday 23 June 2018    (other days)
Saturday memorial of the Blessed Virgin Mary 
 or Saturday of week 11 in Ordinary Time 

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
Hail, of paradise the portal!
  Tree of Life regained, immortal;
Whence, through thee, all sweetness floweth,
  And salvation’s fruit still groweth.
Thou our hearts aright inclinest,
  On our life’s way brightly shinest;
Us from God’s just anger savest,
  Who to man our Saviour gavest.
Hail! Blest shrine of God the Father,
  Thither sinners haste to gather;
Pardon for their guilt obtaining,
  Freedom from the foe’s enchaining;
Strength from thee the weak shall borrow,
  Comfort, thou, of all who sorrow;
From the final wrath tremendous,
  Mother of our Christ, defend us.
Star of ocean! Mother fairest!
  Who the name of Mary bearest;
In thy bright illumination
  Pales each star and constellation.
Hail, O Father! Hail, sweet Mother!
  Hail, O Son of God, our Brother!
Let the hosts of heaven adore thee,
  Every spirit bow before thee.

Psalm 106 (107)
Thanksgiving after rescue
Let them thank the Lord for his love, for the wonders he does for men.
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good,
  for his kindness is for ever.
Let them say this, the people the Lord has redeemed,
  those whom he rescued from their enemies
  whom he gathered together from all lands,
  from east and west, from the north and the south.
They wandered through desert and wilderness,
  they could find no way to a city they could dwell in.
Their souls were weary within them,
  weary from hunger and thirst.
They cried to the Lord in their trouble
  and he rescued them from their distress.
He set them on the right path
  towards a city they could dwell in.
Let them give thanks to the Lord for his kindness,
  for the wonders he works for men:
the Lord, who feeds hungry creatures
  and gives water to the thirsty to drink.
They sat in the darkness and shadow of death,
  imprisoned in chains and in misery,
because they had rebelled against the words of God
  and spurned the counsels of the Most High.
He wore out their hearts with labour:
  they were weak, there was no-one to help.
They cried to the Lord in their trouble
  and he rescued them from their distress.
He led them out of the darkness and shadow of death,
  he shattered their chains.
Let them give thanks to the Lord for his kindness,
  for the wonders he works for men:
the Lord, who shatters doors of bronze,
  who breaks bars of iron.
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.
Let them thank the Lord for his love, for the wonders he does for men.

Psalm 106 (107)
They have seen the Lord’s deeds and the wonders he does.
The people were sick because they transgressed,
  afflicted because of their sins.
All food was distasteful to them,
  they were on the verge of death.
They cried to the Lord in their trouble
  and he rescued them from their distress.
He sent forth his word and healed them,
  delivered them from their ruin.
Let them give thanks to the Lord for his kindness,
  for the wonders he works for men:
Let them offer a sacrifice of praise
  and proclaim his works with rejoicing.
Those who go down to the sea in ships,
  those who trade across the great waters –
they have seen the works of the Lord,
  the wonders he performs in the deep.
He spoke, and a storm arose,
  and the waves of the sea rose up.
They rose up as far as the heavens
  and descended down to the depths:
the sailors’ hearts melted from fear,
  they staggered and reeled like drunkards,
  terror drove them out of their minds.
But they cried to the Lord in their trouble
  and he rescued them from their distress.
He turned the storm into a breeze
  and silenced the waves.
They rejoiced at the ending of the storm
  and he led them to the port that they wanted.
Let them give thanks to the Lord for his kindness,
  for the wonders he works for men:
let them exalt him in the assembly of the people,
  give him praise in the council of the elders.
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.
They have seen the Lord’s deeds and the wonders he does.

Psalm 106 (107)
The upright see and rejoice; they consider the love of the Lord.
The Lord has turned rivers into wilderness,
  he has made well-watered lands into desert,
  fruitful ground into salty waste
  because of the evil of those who dwelt there.
But he has made wilderness into ponds,
  deserts into the sources of rivers,
he has called together the hungry
  and they have founded a city to dwell in.
They have sowed the fields, planted the vines;
  they grow and harvest their produce.
He has blessed them and they have multiplied;
  he does not let their cattle decrease.
But those others became few and oppressed
  through trouble, evil, and sorrow.
He poured his contempt on their princes
  and set them to wander the trackless waste.
But the poor he has saved from their poverty
  and their families grow numerous as sheep.
The upright shall see, and be glad,
  and all wickedness shall block up its mouth.
Whoever is wise will remember these things
  and understand the mercies of the Lord.
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 upright see and rejoice; they consider the love of the Lord.

Lord, your faithfulness reaches up to the clouds.
Your judgements reach down to the depths.

First Reading
Judges 16:4-6,16-31 ©
Delilah’s faithlessness and Samson’s death
After this, Samson fell in love with a woman in the Vale of Sorek; she was called Delilah. The chiefs of the Philistines visited her and said to her, ‘Cajole him and find out where his great strength comes from, and how we can master him and bind him and reduce him to helplessness. In return we will each give you eleven hundred silver shekels.’
  Delilah said to Samson, ‘Please tell me where your great strength comes from, and what would be needed to bind you and tame you.’
  And day after day she persisted with her questions, and allowed him no rest, till he grew tired to death of it. At last he told her his whole secret; he said to her, ‘A razor has never touched my head, because I have been God’s nazirite from my mother’s womb. If my head were shorn, then my power would leave me and I should lose my strength and become like any other man.’ Then Delilah realised he had told his whole secret to her; she had the chiefs of the Philistines summoned and given this message, ‘Come just once more: he has told his whole secret to me.’ And the chiefs of the Philistines came to her with the money in their hands. She lulled Samson to sleep in her lap, and summoned a man who sheared the seven locks off his head. Then he began to lose his strength, and his power left him. She cried, ‘The Philistines are on you, Samson!’ He awoke from sleep, thinking, ‘I shall break free as I did before and shake myself clear.’ But he did not know that the Lord had turned away from him. The Philistines seized him, put out his eyes and took him down to Gaza. They fettered him with a double chain of bronze, and he spent his time turning the mill in the prison.
  But the hair that had been shorn off began to grow again.
  The chiefs of the Philistines assembled to offer a great sacrifice to Dagon their god and to rejoice. They said:
‘Into our hands our god has delivered
Samson our enemy.’
And as soon as the people saw their god, they acclaimed him, shouting his praises:
‘Into our hands our god has delivered
Samson our enemy,
the man who laid our country waste
and killed so many of us.’
And as their hearts were full of joy, they shouted, ‘Send Samson out to amuse us.’ So Samson was brought out of prison, and he performed feats for them; then he was put to stand between the pillars. But Samson said to the boy who was leading him by the hand, ‘Lead me where I can touch the pillars supporting the building, so that I can lean against them.’ Now the building was crowded with men and women. All the chiefs of the Philistines were there, while about three thousand men and women were watching Samson’s feats from the roof. Samson called on the Lord and cried out, ‘Lord, I beg you, remember me; give me strength again this once, and let me be revenged on the Philistines at one blow for my two eyes.’ And Samson put his arms round the two middle pillars supporting the building, and threw all his weight against them, his right arm against one and his left arm against the other; and he cried out, ‘May I die with the Philistines!’ He thrust now with all his might, and the building fell on the chiefs and on all the people there. Those he killed at his death outnumbered those he had killed in his life. His brothers and his father’s whole family came down and carried him away. They took him up and buried him between Zorah and Eshtaol in the tomb of Manoah his father. He had been judge in Israel for twenty years.
Responsory
Ps 43:1-2; Jg 16:28
℟. Defend me, O God, and plead my cause against a godless nation,* for you are my rock, my stronghold.
℣. Remember me, and strengthen me just once again,* for you are my rock, my stronghold.

Second Reading
A sermon by St Sophronius
Through Mary, the Father's blessing has shone forth on mankind
Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you. What joy could surpass this, O Virgin Mother? What grace can excel that which God has granted to you alone? What could be imagined more dazzling or more delightful? Before the miracle we witness in you, all else pales; all else is inferior when compared with the grace you have been given. All else, even what is most desirable, must take second place and enjoy a lesser importance.
  The Lord is with you. Who would dare challenge you? You are God’s mother; who would not immediately defer to you and be glad to accord you a greater primacy and honour? For this reason, when I look upon the privilege you have above all creatures, I extol you with the highest praise: Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you. On your account joy has not only graced men, but is also granted to the powers of heaven.
  Truly, you are blessed among women. For you have changed Eve’s curse into a blessing; and Adam, who hitherto lay under a curse, has been blessed because of you.
  Truly, you are blessed among women. Through you the Father’s blessing has shone forth on mankind, setting them free of their ancient curse.
  Truly, you are blessed among women, because through you your forebears have found salvation. For you were to give birth to the Saviour who was to win them salvation.
  Truly, you are blessed among women, for without seed you have borne, as your fruit, him who bestows blessings on the whole world and redeems it from that curse that made it sprout thorns.
  Truly, you are blessed among women, because, though a woman by nature, you will become, in reality, God’s mother. If he whom you are to bear is truly God made flesh, then rightly do we call you God’s mother. For you have truly given birth to God.
  Enclosed within your womb is God himself. He makes his abode in you and comes forth from you like a bridegroom, winning joy for all and bestowing God’s light on all.
  You, O Virgin, are like a clear and shining sky, in which God has set his tent. From you he comes forth like a bridegroom leaving his chamber. Like a giant running his course, he will run the course of his life which will bring salvation for all who will ever live, and extending from the highest heavens to the end of them, it will fill all things with divine warmth and with life-giving brightness.
Responsory
℟. You are truly blessed among women, for you have changed Eve’s condemnation into a blessing;* through you the Father’s favour was bestowed on all mankind.
℣. Through you your ancestors find salvation;* through you the Father’s favour was bestowed on all mankind.

Let us pray.
Grant us, Lord, we pray,
  the joy of continued health of mind and body:
and through the intercession of Blessed Mary ever-virgin,
  free us of this present sadness
  and fill us with eternal joy.
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.
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 apps, programs and downloads do contain the Grail translation of the psalms.

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