Universalis
Tuesday 21 November 2017    (other days)
The Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary 
 (Tuesday after the Twenty-third Sunday after Trinity)

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
Worship, glory, praise and honour
To our God, high-throned above:
We, with many generations
Join to praise thy name of love.
In the scriptures, by the Spirit,
May we see the Saviour’s face,
Hear his word and heed his calling,
Know his will and grow in grace.

Psalm 9B (10)
Thanksgiving
The Lord will protect the rights of the oppressed.
With what purpose, Lord, do you stay away,
  hide yourself in time of need and trouble?
The wicked in their pride persecute the weak,
  trap them in the plots they have devised.
The sinner glories in his desires,
  the miser congratulates himself.
The sinner in his arrogance rejects the Lord:
  “there is no God, no retribution.”
This is what he thinks
 – and all goes well for him.
Your judgements are far beyond his comprehension:
  he despises all who stand against him.
The sinner says to himself: “I will stand firm;
  nothing can touch me, from generation to generation.”
His mouth is full of malice and deceit,
  under his tongue hide trouble and distress.
He lies in ambush by the villages,
  he kills the innocent in some secret place.
He watches the weak,
  he hides like a lion in its lair, and makes plans.
He plans to rob the weak,
  lure him to his trap and rob him.
He rushes in, makes a dive,
  and the poor victim is caught.
For he has said to himself, “God has forgotten.
  He is not watching, he will never see.”
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 will protect the rights of the oppressed.

Psalm 9B (10)
Lord, you have seen our trouble and our sorrow.
Rise up, Lord, raise your hand!
  Do not forget the weak.
Why does the wicked man spurn God?
  Because he says to himself, “you will not take revenge.”
But you do see: you see the trouble and the pain,
  and then you take things into your own hands.
The weak fall to your care,
  and you are the help of the orphan.
Break the arms of the sinner and evil-doer:
  seek out wickedness until there is no more to be found.
The Lord is King for ever and for ever.
  The Gentiles have perished from his land.
You have heard the prayer of the weak, Lord,
  and you will strengthen their hearts.
You will lend your ear to the pleas of the orphans and the helpless,
  so mere mortals can frighten them no longer.
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, you have seen our trouble and our sorrow.

Psalm 11 (12)
A prayer against the proud
The words of the Lord are words without alloy, silver from the furnace, seven times refined.
Save me, Lord, for the good men are all gone:
  there is no-one to be trusted among the sons of men.
Neighbour speaks falsehood to neighbour:
  with lying lips and crooked hearts they speak.
Let the Lord condemn all lying lips,
  all boastful tongues.
They say “Our tongues will make us great,
  our lips are ours, we have no master.”
“On account of the sufferings of the poor,
  the groans of the weak, I will rise up,” says the Lord.
  “I will bring to safety the one whom men despise.”
The words of the Lord are pure words,
  silver tried by fire, freed from dross,
  silver seven times refined.
You, Lord, will help us
  and guard us from now to all eternity –
while the wicked walk round outside,
  where the vilest are most honoured of the children of men.
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 words of the Lord are words without alloy, silver from the furnace, seven times refined.

The Lord will guide the humble on the right path.
He will teach his ways to the meek.

First Reading
Zechariah 9:1-10:2 ©
Zion’s salvation is promised
The Lord has passed
through the land of Hadrach
and Damascus is his dwelling-place;
for the cities of Aram belong to the Lord
no less than all the tribes of Israel;
Hamath too, which borders on it,
(Tyre) and Sidon also, despite her acumen.
Tyre has built herself a rampart,
has heaped up silver like dust
and gold like the dirt of the streets.
And now the Lord is going to take possession of her;
he will topple her power into the sea;
she herself will be consumed by fire.
Seeing this, Ashkelon will be terrified,
and Gaza be seized with trembling,
so will Ekron, at the ruin of her prospects;
the king will vanish from Gaza
and Ashkelon remain unpeopled,
but the bastard will live in Ashdod!
I mean to destroy the arrogance of the Philistine;
I intend to take his blood out of his mouth
and his abomination from between his teeth.
He too will become a remnant for our God
and be like a family in Judah.
Ekron shall be like the Jebusite.
Near my house I will take my stand
like a watchman on guard against prowlers;
the tyrant shall pass their way no more,
because I have now taken notice of its distress.
Rejoice heart and soul, daughter of Zion!
Shout with gladness, daughter of Jerusalem!
See now, your king comes to you;
he is victorious, he is triumphant,
humble and riding on a donkey,
on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
He will banish chariots from Ephraim
and horses from Jerusalem;
the bow of war will be banished.
He will proclaim peace for the nations.
His empire shall stretch from sea to sea,
from the River to the ends of the earth.
As for you, because of the blood of your covenant
I am sending back your prisoners from the pit
(in which there is no water).
To you, daughter of Zion,
the hopeful captives will return.
In compensation for your days of banishment
I will give you back double.
For I bend my bow; it is Judah;
I make Ephraim its arrow.
I am going to brandish your children, Zion,
(against your children, Javan);
I mean to make you like the sword of a hero.
The Lord will appear above them
and his arrow will flash out like lightning.
The Lord will sound the trumpet
and advance in the storms of the south.
The Lord (of Hosts) will protect them!
They will trample sling stones underfoot,
they will drink blood like wine,
they will be soaked in it like the horns of an altar.
The Lord their God will give them victory
when that day comes;
he will pasture his people like a flock
(like the flashing jewels of a diadem)
on his land.
What joy and what beauty shall be theirs!
Corn will make the young men flourish,
and sweet wine the maidens.
Ask the Lord for rain
at the time of the spring rains.
For it is the Lord who sends the lightning
and gives the showers of rain;
he gives bread to man,
and grass to the cattle.
Because the teraphim utter futile words
and the diviners have lying visions
and publish empty dreams
and voice misleading nonsense,
naturally the people stray like sheep;
they wander because they have no shepherd.
Responsory
Zc 9:9; Jn 12:14
℟. Rejoice, heart and soul, daughter of Zion! Shout with gladness, daughter of Jerusalem!* See how your king comes to you: he is victorious, he is triumphant, humble, and riding on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
℣. Jesus found a young donkey and mounted it, as the scripture says:* See how your king comes to you: he is victorious, he is triumphant, humble, and riding on a colt, the foal of a donkey.

Second Reading
From a sermon by Saint Augustine
By faith she believed; by faith, conceived
Stretching out his hand over his disciples, the Lord Christ declared: Here are my mother and my brothers; anyone who does the will of my Father who sent me is my brother and sister and my mother. I would urge you to ponder these words. Did the Virgin Mary, who believed by faith and conceived by faith, who was the chosen one from whom our Saviour was born among men, who was created by Christ before Christ was created in her – did she not do the will of the Father? Indeed the blessed Mary certainly did the Father’s will, and so it was for her a greater thing to have been Christ’s disciple than to have been his mother, and she was more blessed in her discipleship than in her motherhood. Hers was the happiness of first bearing in her womb him whom she would obey as her master.
  Now listen and see if the words of Scripture do not agree with what I have said. The Lord was passing by and crowds were following him. His miracles gave proof of divine power, and a woman cried out: Happy is the womb that bore you, blessed is that womb! But the Lord, not wishing people to seek happiness in a purely physical relationship, replied: More blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it. Mary heard God’s word and kept it, and so she is blessed. She kept God’s truth in her mind, a nobler thing than carrying his body in her womb. The truth and the body were both Christ: he was kept in Mary’s mind insofar as he is truth, he was carried in her womb insofar as he is man; but what is kept in the mind is of a higher order than what is carried in the womb.
  The Virgin Mary is both holy and blessed, and yet the Church is greater than she. Mary is a part of the Church, a member of the Church, a holy, an eminent – the most eminent – member, but still only a member of the entire body. The body undoubtedly is greater than she, one of its members. This body has the Lord for its head, and head and body together make up the whole Christ. In other words, our head is divine – our head is God.
  Now, beloved, give me your whole attention, for you also are members of Christ; you also are the body of Christ. Consider how you yourselves can be among those of whom the Lord said: Here are my mother and my brothers. Do you wonder how you can be the mother of Christ? He himself said: Whoever hears and fulfils the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and my sister and my mother. As for our being the brothers and sisters of Christ, we can understand this because although there is only one inheritance and Christ is the only Son, his mercy would not allow him to remain alone. It was his wish that we too should be heirs of the Father, and co-heirs with himself.
  Now having said that all of you are brothers of Christ, shall I not dare to call you his mother? Much less would I dare to deny his own words. Tell me how Mary became the mother of Christ, if it was not by giving birth to the members of Christ? You, to whom I am speaking, are the members of Christ. Of whom were you born? “Of Mother Church,” I hear the reply of your hearts. You became sons of this mother at your baptism, you came to birth then as members of Christ. Now you in your turn must draw to the font of baptism as many as you possibly can. You became sons when you were born there yourselves, and now by bringing others to birth in the same way, you have it in your power to become the mothers of Christ.
Responsory
℟. I exult for joy in the Lord, my soul rejoices in my God,* for he has clothed me in the garments of salvation like a bride adorned in her jewels.
℣. My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord and my spirit exults in God my saviour,* for he has clothed me in the garments of salvation like a bride adorned in her jewels.

Let us pray.
Lord,
  as we honour the memory of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
  and seek her help,
grant that we, like her,
  may share in the fullness of your grace.
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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