Universalis
Thursday 25 August 2016    (other days)
Saint Louis 
 or Thursday of week 21 in Ordinary Time 
 or Saint Joseph of Calasanz, Priest 

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
Eternal Father, through your Word
You gave new life to Adam’s race,
And call us now to live in light,
New creatures by your saving grace.
To you who stooped to all who sin
We render homage and give praise:
To Father, Son and Spirit blest
Whose loving gift is endless days.
Stanbrook Abbey Hymnal

Psalm 17 (18)
Thanksgiving
The word of the Lord is a shield for all who make him their refuge.
The Lord’s ways are pure;
  the words of the Lord are refined in the furnace;
  the Lord protects all who hope in him.
For what God is there, but our Lord?
  What help, but in the Lord our God?
God, who has wrapped me in his strength
  and set me on the perfect path,
who has made my feet like those of the deer,
  who has set me firm upon the heights,
who trains my hands for battle,
  teaches my arms to bend a bow of bronze.
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 word of the Lord is a shield for all who make him their refuge.

Psalm 17 (18)
Lord, your right hand upheld me.
You have given me the shield of your salvation;
  your right hand holds me up;
  by answering me, you give me greatness.
You have stretched the length of my stride,
  my feet do not weaken.
I pursue my enemies and surround them;
  I do not turn back until they are no more.
I smash them to pieces, they cannot stand,
  they fall beneath my feet.
You have wrapped me round with strength for war,
  and made my attackers fall under me.
You turned my enemies’ backs on me,
  you destroyed those who hated me.
They cried out, but there was no-one to save them;
  they cried to the Lord, but he did not hear.
I have ground them up until they are dust in the wind,
  trodden them down like the mud of the street.
You have delivered me from the murmurings of the people
  and placed me at the head of the nations.
A people I do not even know serves me –
  at a mere rumour of my orders, they obey.
The children of strangers beg for my favour;
  they hide away and tremble where they hide.
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, your right hand upheld me.

Psalm 17 (18)
Long life to the Lord! Praised be the God who saves me.
The Lord lives, my blessed Helper.
  Let the God of my salvation be exalted.
God, you give me my revenge,
  you subject peoples to my rule,
  you free me from my enraged enemies.
You raise me up from those who attack me,
  you snatch me from the grasp of the violent.
And so I will proclaim you among the nations, Lord,
  and sing to your name.
Time and again you save your king,
  you show your loving kindness to your anointed,
  to David and his descendants for ever.
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.
Long life to the Lord! Praised be the God who saves me.

Uncover my eyes, Lord,
and I will consider the wonders of your Law.

First Reading
Jeremiah 3:1-5,19-4:4 ©
If a man divorces his wife
and she leaves him
to marry someone else,
may she still go back to him?
Has not that piece of land
been totally polluted?
And you, who have prostituted yourself with so many lovers,
you would come back to me? – it is the Lord who speaks.
Lift your eyes to the bare heights and look!
Is there a single place where you have not offered your body?
You waited by the roadside for clients
like an Arab in the desert.
You have polluted the country
with your prostitution and your vices:
this is why the showers have been withheld,
the late rains have not come.
And you maintained a prostitute’s bold front,
never thinking to blush.
Even then did you not cry to me, “My father!
You, the friend of my youth!
Will he keep his resentment for ever,
will he maintain his wrath to the end?”
That was what you said, and still you went on sinning,
you were so obstinate.
And I was thinking:
How I wanted to rank you with my sons,
and give you a country of delights,
the fairest heritage of all the nations!
I had thought you would call me: My father,
and would never cease to follow me.
But like a woman betraying her lover,
the House of Israel has betrayed me –
it is the Lord who speaks.
A noise is heard on the bare heights:
the weeping and entreaty of the sons of Israel,
because they have gone so wildly astray,
and forgotten the Lord their God.
‘Come back, disloyal sons,
I want to heal your disloyalty.’
‘We are here, we are coming to you,
for you are the Lord our God.
The heights are a delusion after all,
so is the tumult of the mountains.
‘The Lord our God is, after all,
the saving of Israel.
The Thing of Shame has devoured what our ancestors worked for
since our youth
(their flocks and herds, their sons and daughters).
Let us lie down in our shame, let our dishonour be our covering,
for we have sinned against the Lord our God
(we and our ancestors since our youth until today;
and we have not listened to the voice of the Lord our God).’
‘If you wish to come back, Israel – it is the Lord who speaks –
it is to me you must return.
Do away with your abominations
and you will have no need to avoid me.
If you swear, “As the Lord lives!”
truthfully, justly, honestly,
the nations will bless themselves by you,
and glory in you.
For thus speaks the Lord
to the men of Judah and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem:
Clean your ground thoroughly,
sow nothing among thorns.
Circumcise yourselves for the Lord; off with the foreskin of your hearts
(men of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem),
lest my wrath should leap out like a fire,
and burn with no one to quench it,
in return for the wickedness of your deeds.’
Responsory
℟. If our crimes are witness against us, then, Lord, for your name’s sake, act!* Yes, our apostasies have been many, we have sinned against you.
℣. If you, O Lord, should mark our guilt, Lord, who would survive?* Yes, our apostasies have been many, we have sinned against you.

Second Reading
St Louis' spiritual testament to his son
A just king raises up the earth
My dear son, in the first place I teach you that you must love the Lord, your God, with all your heart and all your strength; unless you do so you cannot be saved. You must guard yourself from everything that you know is displeasing to God, that is to say, from all mortal sin. You must be ready to undergo every kind of martyrdom rather than commit one mortal sin.
  If God sends you tribulation, you ought to endure it, giving thanks, realising that it is for your good, and that, perhaps, you have deserved it. If however the Lord confers some benefit on you, you must humbly thank him, and be on your guard not to become the worse for it, either through vainglory or in any other way. You must not offend God with the very gifts he has given you.
  Assist at the Divine Office of the Church with joyful devotion; while you are present in church do not let your gaze wander, do not chat about trifles, but pray to the Lord attentively, either with your lips, or meditating in your heart.
  Be compassionate towards the poor, the destitute and the afflicted; and, as far as lies in your power, help and console them. Give thanks to God for all the gifts he has bestowed upon you, so that you will become worthy of still greater gifts. Towards your subjects, act with such justice that you may steer a middle course, swerving neither to the right nor to the left, but lean more to the side of the poor man than of the rich until such time as you are certain about the truth. Do your utmost to ensure peace and justice for all your subjects but especially for clergy and religious.
  Devotedly obey our mother, the Roman Church, and revere the Supreme Pontiff as your spiritual father. Endeavour to banish all sin, especially blasphemy and heresy, from your kingdom.
  Finally, my dear son, I impart to you every blessing that a loving father can bestow on his son; may the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and all the saints, guard you from all evil. May the Lord grant you the grace to do his will so that he may be served and honoured by you, and that, together, after this life we may come to see him, love him and praise him for ever. Amen.
Responsory
℟. He did what is pleasing to the Lord; no king could be compared with him.* He was devoted to the Lord, never turning from him.
℣. He kept the commandments, and so the Lord was with him.* He was devoted to the Lord, never turning from him.

Let us pray.
Almighty, ever-living God,
  you took Saint Louis from his cares as a ruler in this world
  and brought him to the glory of heaven.
Help us, by his intercession,
  to seek your eternal kingdom
  through the tasks we perform on earth.
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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