Universalis
Monday 11 December 2017    (other days)
Saint Damasus I, Pope 
 or Monday of the 2nd week of Advent 

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
The Advent of our God
  With eager prayers we greet
And singing haste up on the road
  His glorious gift to meet.
The everlasting Son
  Scorns not a Virgin’s womb;
That we from bondage may be won
  He bears a bondsman’s doom.
Daughter of Zion, rise
  To meet thy lowly King;
Let not thy stubborn heart despise
  The peace he deigns to bring.
In clouds of awful light,
  As Judge he comes again,
His scattered people to unite,
  With them in heaven to reign.
Let evil flee away
  Ere that dread hour shall dawn.
Let this old Adam day by day
  God’s image still put on.
Praise to the Incarnate Son,
  Who comes to set us free,
With God the Father, ever One,
  To all eternity.

Psalm 30 (31)
Trustful prayer in time of adversity
Hear me, Lord, and come to rescue me.
In you, Lord, I put my trust: may I never be put to shame.
  In your justice, set me free,
Turn your ear to me,
  make haste to rescue me.
Be my rampart, my fortification;
  keep me safe.
For you are my strength and my refuge:
  you will lead me out to the pastures,
  for your own name’s sake.
You will lead me out of the trap that they laid for me –
  for you are my strength.
Into your hands I commend my spirit:
  you have redeemed me, Lord God of truth.
You hate those who run after vain nothings;
  but I put my trust in the Lord.
I will rejoice and be glad in your kindness,
  for you have looked on me, lowly as I am.
You saw when my soul was in need:
  you did not leave me locked in the grip of the enemy,
  but set my feet on free and open ground.
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.
Hear me, Lord, and come to rescue me.

Psalm 30 (31)
Lord, let your face shine on your servant.
Take pity on me, Lord, for I am troubled:
  my eyes grow weak with sorrow,
  the very centre of my being is disturbed.
For my life is worn out with distress,
  my years with groaning;
my strength becomes weakness,
  my bones melt away.
I am a scandal and a disgrace,
  so many are my enemies;
to my friends and neighbours,
  I am a thing to fear.
When they see me in the street,
  they run from me.
I have vanished from their minds as though I were dead,
  or like a pot that is broken.
I know this – for I have heard the scolding of the crowd.
  There is terror all around,
for when they come together against me
  it is my life they are resolved to take.
But I put my trust in you, Lord;
  I say: “You are my God,
  my fate is in your hands.”
Tear me from the grip of my enemies,
  from those who hound me;
let your face shine upon your servant,
  in your kindness, save me.
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, let your face shine on your servant.

Psalm 30 (31)
Blessed be the Lord, who has shown me the wonders of his love.
How very many are the pleasures, Lord,
  that you have stored up for those who fear you.
You have made these things ready for those who trust in you,
  to give them in the sight of all men.
Far away from the plottings of men
  you hide them in your secret place.
You keep them safe in your dwelling-place
  far from lying tongues.
Blessed be the Lord,
  for he has shown me his wonderful kindness
  within the fortified city.
In my terror, I said
  “I am cut off from your sight”;
but you heard the voice of my prayer
  when I called to you.
Love the Lord, all his chosen ones.
The Lord keeps his faithful ones safe,
  heaps rich revenge on the arrogant.
Be brave, let your hearts be strong,
  all who trust in 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.
Blessed be the Lord, who has shown me the wonders of his love.

Show us your saving mercy, Lord,
and give us your saving help.

First ReadingIsaiah 24:1-18 ©
The Lord’s manifestation on his day
See how the Lord lays the earth waste,
makes it a desert, buckles its surface,
scatters its inhabitants,
priest and people alike, master and slave,
mistress and maid, seller and buyer,
lender and borrower, creditor and debtor.
Ravaged, ravaged the earth,
despoiled, despoiled,
as the Lord has said.
The earth is mourning, withering,
the world is pining, withering,
the heavens are pining away with the earth.
The earth is defiled
under its inhabitants’ feet,
for they have transgressed the law, violated the precept,
broken the everlasting covenant.
So a curse consumes the earth
and its inhabitants suffer the penalty,
that is why the inhabitants of the earth are burnt up
and few men are left.
The wine is mourning, the vine is pining away,
all glad hearts are sighing.
The merry tambourines are silent,
the sound of revelling is over,
the merry lyre is silent.
They no longer sing over their wine,
the drunkard finds strong drink revolting.
The city of emptiness is in ruins,
the entrance to every house is shut.
There is lamentation in the streets: no wine,
joy quite gone,
gladness banished from the country.
Nothing but rubble in the city,
the gate smashed to pieces;
and so it will be on earth,
among the peoples,
as at the beating of the olive trees,
as at the gleaning of the grapes
when the grape harvest is over.
They lift up their voices, singing for joy;
they acclaim the majesty of the Lord from the sea.
Therefore in the islands they give glory to the Lord,
in the islands of the sea, to the name of the Lord, the God of Israel.
From remotest earth we hear songs, ‘Honour to the upright one.’
But ‘Enough, enough!’ I say.
‘Woe to the traitors who betray,
to the traitors who treacherously betray!’
Terror, the pit, the snare
for you, inhabitants of the earth:
the man who runs away at the cry of terror
shall fall into the pit,
and the man who climbs out of the pit
shall be caught in the snare.
Responsory
Is 24:14-15; Ps 96:1
℟. They lift up their voices, they sing for joy;* in the east give glory to the Lord.
℣. O sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth;* in the east give glory to the Lord.

Second Reading
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
℟. Precious in the sight of God is the death of his saints.* He takes care of them, he will not let a bone of theirs be broken.
℣. The Lord clothed them with the garments of rejoicing.* He takes care of them, he will not let a bone of theirs be broken.

Let us pray.
Give us grace, Lord,
  always to celebrate the holiness of your martyrs,
  for whom Pope Saint Damasus
  showed such great love and veneration.
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.

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