Thursday 3 September 2015    (other days)
Saint Gregory the Great, Pope, Doctor
 (Thursday of week 22 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.

Deus, in adiutórium meum inténde.
  Dómine, ad adiuvándum me festína.
Glória Patri et Fílio*
  et Spirítui Sancto.
Sicut erat in princípio et nunc et semper*
  et in sǽcula sæculórum.
Amen. Allelúia.
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.

I. Quando Officium lectionis dicitur noctu vel summo mane:
Ales diéi núntius
lucem propínquam prǽcinit;
nos excitátor méntium
iam Christus ad vitam vocat.
«Auférte –clamat– léctulos
ægros, sopóros, désides;
castíque, recti ac sóbrii
vigiláte; iam sum próximus».
Ut, cum corúscis flátibus
auróra cælum spárserit,
omnes labóre exércitos
confírmet ad spem lúminis,
Iesum ciámus vócibus
flentes, precántes, sóbrii;
inténta supplicátio
dormíre cor mundum vetat.
Tu, Christe, somnum dísice,
tu rumpe noctis víncula,
tu solve peccátum vetus
novúmque lumen íngere.
Sit, Christe, rex piíssime,
tibi Patríque glória
cum Spíritu Paráclito,
in sempitérna sǽcula. Amen.
II. Quando Officium lectionis dicitur diurno tempore:
Amóris sensus érige
ad te, largítor véniæ,
ut fias clemens córdibus
purgátis inde sórdibus.
Extérni huc advénimus
et éxsules ingémimus;
tu portus es et pátria,
ad vitæ duc nos átria.
Felix quæ sitit cáritas
te fontem vitæ, o Véritas;
beáti valde óculi
te speculántis pópuli.
Grandis est tibi glória
tuæ laudis memória,
quam sine fine célebrant
qui cor ab imis élevant.
Præsta, Pater piíssime,
Patríque compar Unice,
cum Spíritu Paráclito
regnans per omne sǽculum. Amen.
Where true love is dwelling, God is dwelling there:
Love’s own loving Presence love does ever share.
Love of Christ has made us out of many one;
In our midst is dwelling God’s eternal Son.
Give him joyful welcome, love him and revere:
Cherish one another with a love sincere.

Ps 43:2-9
Populi calamitates
In his omnibus superamus propter eum, qui dilexit nos” (Rom 8, 37).
Salvásti nos, Dómine, et in nómine tuo confitébimur in sǽculum.
2Deus, áuribus nostris audívimus;†
  patres nostri annuntiavérunt nobis*
  opus, quod operátus es in diébus eórum, in diébus antíquis.
3Tu manu tua gentes depulísti et plantásti illos*
  afflixísti pópulos et dilatásti eos.
4Nec enim in gládio suo possedérunt terram,*
  et bráchium eórum non salvávit eos;
sed déxtera tua et bráchium tuum et illuminátio vultus tui,*
  quóniam complacuísti in eis.
5Tu es rex meus et Deus meus,*
  qui mandas salútes Iacob.
6In te inimícos nostros proiécimus,*
  et in nómine tuo conculcávimus insurgéntes in nos.
7Non enim in arcu meo sperábo,*
  et gládius meus non salvábit me.
8Tu autem salvásti nos de affligéntibus nos*
  et odiéntes nos confudísti.
9In Deo gloriábimur tota die*
  et in nómine tuo confitébimur in sǽculum.
Glória Patri et Fílio*
  et Spirítui Sancto.
Sicut erat in princípio et nunc et semper*
  et in sǽcula sæculórum.
Salvásti nos, Dómine, et in nómine tuo confitébimur in sǽculum.
Psalm 43 (44)
In time of defeat
It was you who saved us, Lord: we will praise your name without ceasing.
Our own ears have heard, O God,
  and our fathers have proclaimed it to us,
  what you did in their days, the days of old:
how with your own hand you swept aside the nations
  and put us in their place,
  struck them down to make room for us.
It was not by their own swords that our fathers took over the land,
  it was not their own strength that gave them victory;
but your hand and your strength,
  the light of your face,
  for you were pleased in them.
You are my God and my king,
  who take care for the safety of Jacob.
Through you we cast down your enemies;
  in your name we crushed those who rose against us.
I will not put my hopes in my bow,
  my sword will not bring me to safety;
for it was you who saved us from our afflictions,
  you who set confusion among those who hated us.
We will glory in the Lord all the day,
  and proclaim your name for all ages.
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.
It was you who saved us, Lord: we will praise your name without ceasing.

Ps 43:10-17
Parce, Dómine, et ne des hereditátem tuam in oppróbrium.
10Nunc autem reppulísti et confudísti nos*
  et non egrediéris, Deus, cum virtútibus nostris.
11Convertísti nos retrórsum coram inimícis nostris,*
  et, qui odérunt nos, diripuérunt sibi.
12Dedísti nos tamquam oves ad vescéndum*
  et in géntibus dispersísti nos.
13Vendidísti pópulum tuum sine lucro,*
  nec dítior factus es in commutatióne eórum.
14Posuísti nos oppróbrium vicínis nostris,*
  subsannatiónem et derísum his, qui sunt in circúitu nostro.
15Posuísti nos similitúdinem in géntibus,*
  commotiónem cápitis in pópulis.
16Tota die verecúndia mea contra me est,*
  et confúsio faciéi meæ coopéruit me
17a voce exprobrántis et obloquéntis,*
  a fácie inimíci et ultóris.
Glória Patri et Fílio*
  et Spirítui Sancto.
Sicut erat in princípio et nunc et semper*
  et in sǽcula sæculórum.
Parce, Dómine, et ne des hereditátem tuam in oppróbrium.
Psalm 43 (44)
Spare us, Lord, do not let your people be put to shame.
But now, God, you have spurned us and confounded us,
  so that we must go into battle without you.
You have put us to flight in the sight of our enemies,
  and those who hate us plunder us at will.
You have handed us over like sheep sold for food,
  you have scattered us among the nations.
You have sold your people for no money,
  not even profiting by the exchange.
You have made us the laughing-stock of our neighbours,
  mocked and derided by those who surround us.
The nations have made us a by-word,
  the peoples toss their heads in scorn.
All the day I am ashamed,
  I blush with shame
as they reproach me and revile me,
  my enemies and my persecutors.
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.
Spare us, Lord, do not let your people be put to shame.

Ps 43:18-26
Exsúrge, Dómine, et rédime nos propter misericórdiam tuam.
18Hæc ómnia venérunt super nos, nec oblíti sumus te;*
  et iníque non égimus in testaméntum tuum.
19Et non recéssit retro cor nostrum,*
  nec declinavérunt gressus nostri a via tua;
20sed humiliásti nos in loco vúlpium*
  et operuísti nos umbra mortis.
21Si oblíti fuérimus nomen Dei nostri*
  et si expandérimus manus nostras ad deum aliénum,
22nonne Deus requíret ista?*
  Ipse enim novit abscóndita cordis.
23Quóniam propter te mortificámur tota die,*
  æstimáti sumus sicut oves occisiónis.
24Evígila quare obdórmis, Dómine?*
  Exsúrge et ne repéllas in finem.
25Quare fáciem tuam avértis,*
  oblivísceris inópiæ nostræ et tribulatiónis nostræ?
26Quóniam humiliáta est in púlvere ánima nostra,*
  conglutinátus est in terra venter noster.
Exsúrge, Dómine, ádiuva nos*
  et rédime nos propter misericórdiam tuam.
Glória Patri et Fílio*
  et Spirítui Sancto.
Sicut erat in princípio et nunc et semper*
  et in sǽcula sæculórum.
Exsúrge, Dómine, et rédime nos propter misericórdiam tuam.
Psalm 43 (44)
Arise, Lord! Redeem us because of your love.
All this happened to us,
  but not because we had forgotten you.
We were not disloyal to your covenant;
  our hearts did not turn away;
  our steps did not wander from your path;
and yet you brought us low,
  with horrors all about us:
  you overwhelmed us in the shadows of death.
If we had forgotten the name of our God,
  if we had spread out our hands before an alien god —
would God not have known?
  He knows what is hidden in our hearts.
It is for your sake that we face death all the day,
  that we are reckoned as sheep to be slaughtered.
Awake, Lord, why do you sleep?
  Rise up, do not always reject us.
Why do you turn away your face?
  How can you forget our poverty and our tribulation?
Our souls are crushed into the dust,
  our bodies dragged down to the earth.
Rise up, Lord, and help us.
  In your mercy, redeem 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.
Arise, Lord! Redeem us because of your love.

℣. Dómine, ad quem íbimus?
℟. Verba vitæ ætérnæ habes.
Lord, to whom shall we go?
You have the words of eternal life.

Lectio prior
De libro Ieremíæ prophétæ 29, 1-14
Epistula Ieremiæ ad exsules Israel
1Hæc sunt verba epístulæ, quam misit Ieremías prophéta de Ierúsalem ad relíquias seniórum transmigratiónis et ad sacerdótes et ad prophétas et ad omnem pópulum, quem tradúxerat Nabuchodónosor de Ierúsalem in Babylónem, 2postquam egréssus est Iechonías rex et dómina et eunúchi et príncipes Iudæ et Ierúsalem et faber et inclúsor de Ierúsalem, 3in manu Elasa fílii Saphan et Gamaríæ fílii Helcíæ, quos misit Sedecías rex Iudæ ad Nabuchodónosor regem Babylónis in Babylónem dicens:
  4«Hæc dicit Dóminus exercítuum, Deus Israel, omni transmigratióni, quam tránstuli de Ierúsalem in Babylónem: 5Ædificáte domos et habitáte et plantáte hortos et comédite fructum eórum, 6accípite uxóres et generáte fílios et fílias et date fíliis vestris uxóres et fílias vestras date viris, et páriant fílios et fílias, et multiplicámini ibi et nolíte esse pauci número. 7Et quǽrite pacem civitátis, ad quam transmigráre vos feci, et oráte pro ea ad Dóminum, quia in pace illíus erit pax vobis. 8Hæc enim dicit Dóminus exercítuum, Deus Israel: Non vos sedúcant prophétæ vestri, qui sunt in médio vestrum, et divíni vestri, et ne attendátis ad sómnia vestra, quæ vos somniátis, 9quia falso ipsi prophétant vobis in nómine meo, et non misi eos, dicit Dóminus. 10Quia hæc dicit Dóminus: Cum impléti fúerint in Babylóne septuagínta anni, visitábo vos et suscitábo super vos verbum meum bonum, ut redúcam vos ad locum istum. 11Ego enim scio cogitatiónes, quas ego cógito super vos, ait Dóminus, cogitatiónes pacis et non afflictiónis, ut dem vobis posteritátem et spem. 12Et invocábitis me et íbitis; et orábitis me, et ego exáudiam vos. 13Quærétis me et inveniétis, cum quæsiéritis me in toto corde vestro. 14Et invéniar a vobis, ait Dóminus, et redúcam captivitátem vestram et congregábo vos de univérsis géntibus et de cunctis locis, ad quæ éxpuli vos, dicit Dóminus; et revérti vos fáciam ad locum, de quo transmigráre vos feci».
First Reading
Jeremiah 29:1-14 ©
This is the text of the letter that the prophet Jeremiah sent from Jerusalem to those elders carried off into exile, to the priests, the prophets and all the people whom Nebuchadnezzar had led away into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon. This was after King Jeconiah had left Jerusalem with the queen mother, the eunuchs, the nobility of Judah and Jerusalem, and the blacksmiths and metal-workers. The letter was entrusted to Elasah son of Shaphan and to Gemariah son of Hilkiah, whom Zedekiah king of Judah had sent to Babylon, to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon. The letter said:
  ‘The Lord of Hosts, the God of Israel, says this to all the exiles deported from Jerusalem to Babylon, “Build houses, settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce; take wives and have sons and daughters; choose wives for your sons, find husbands for your daughters so that these can bear sons and daughters in their turn; you must increase there and not decrease. Work for the good of the country to which I have exiled you; pray to the Lord on its behalf, since on its welfare yours depends. For the Lord says this: Only when the seventy years granted to Babylon are over, will I visit you and fulfil my promise in your favour by bringing you back to this place. I know the plans I have in mind for you – it is the Lord who speaks – plans for peace, not disaster, reserving a future full of hope for you. Then when you call to me, and come to plead with me, I will listen to you. When you seek me you shall find me, when you seek me with all your heart; I will let you find me – it is the Lord who speaks. I will restore your fortunes and gather you from all the nations and all the places where I have dispersed you – it is the Lord who speaks. I will bring you back to the place from which I exiled you.
Ps 104 (105), 1 a. 4; cf. Eccli 2, 11 b
℟. Confitémini Dómino et invocáte nomen eius;* Quǽrite Dóminum et poténtiam eius, quǽrite fáciem eius semper.
℣. Scitóte quia nullus sperávit in Dómino et confúsus est.* Quǽrite.
Give thanks to the Lord, tell his name; consider the Lord and his strength, constantly seek his face.
Who ever trusted in the Lord and was put to shame? Consider the Lord and his strength, constantly seek his face.

Lectio altera
Ex Homíliis sancti Gregórii Magni papæ in Ezechiélem (Lib. 1, 11, 4-6: CCL 142, 170-172)
Pro Christi amore in eius eloquia nec mihi parco
Fili hóminis, speculatórem dedi te dómui Israel. Notándum quod eum quem Dóminus ad prædicándum mittit speculatórem esse denúntiat. Speculátor quippe semper in altitúdine stat, ut quidquid ventúrum est longe prospíciat. Et quisquis pópuli speculátor pónitur, in alto debet stare per vitam, ut possit prodésse per providéntiam.
  O quam dura mihi sunt ista quæ loquor, quia memetípsum loquéndo fério, cuius neque lingua, ut dignum est, prædicatiónem tenet, neque, inquántum tenére súfficit, vita séquitur linguam.
  Ego reum me esse non ábnego, torpórem meum atque neglegéntiam vídeo. Erit fortásse apud pium iúdicem impetrátio véniæ ipsa cognítio culpæ. Et quidem in monastério pósitus valébam et ab otiósis linguam restríngere, et in intentióne oratiónis pæne contínue mentem tenére. At postquam cordis úmerum sárcinæ pastoráli suppósui, collígere se ad semetípsum assídue non potest ánimus, quia ad multa partítur.
  Cogor namque modo Ecclesiárum, modo monasteriórum causas discútere, sæpe singulórum vitas actúsque pensáre. Modo quædam cívium negótia sustinére, modo de irruéntibus barbarórum gládiis gémere, et commísso gregi insidiántes lupos timére. Modo rerum curam súmere, ne desint subsídia eis ipsis quibus disciplínæ régula tenétur, modo raptóres quosdam æquanímiter pérpeti, modo eis sub stúdio servátæ caritátis obviáre.
  Cum ítaque ad tot et tanta cogitánda scissa ac dilaniáta mens dúcitur, quando ad semetípsam rédeat, ut totam se in prædicatióne cólligat, et a proferéndi verbi ministério non recédat? Quia autem necessitáte loci sæpe viris sæculáribus iungor, nonnúmquam mihi linguæ disciplínam reláxo. Nam si in assíduo censúræ meæ rigóre me téneo, scio quia ab infirmióribus fúgior, eósque ad hoc quod áppeto numquam traho. Unde fit ut eórum sæpe et otiósa patiénter áudiam. Sed quia ipse quoque infírmus sum, in otiósis sermónibus paulísper tractus, libénter iam ea loqui incípio, quæ audíre cœ́peram invítus; et ubi tædébat cádere, libet iacére.
  Quis ergo ego vel qualis speculátor sum, qui non in monte óperis sto, sed adhuc in valle infirmitátis iáceo? Potens vero est humáni géneris creátor et redémptor, indígno mihi et vitæ altitúdinem et linguæ efficáciam donáre, pro cuius amóre in eius elóquio nec mihi parco.
Second Reading
A sermon of St Gregory the Great
For the love of Christ I do not spare myself in preaching him
‘Son of man, I have appointed you as watchman to the house of Israel.’ Note that Ezekiel, whom the Lord sent to preach his word, is described as a watchman. Now a watchman always takes up his position on the heights so that he can see from a distance whatever approaches. Likewise whoever is appointed watchman to a people should live a life on the heights so that he can help them by taking a wide survey.
  These words are hard to utter, for when I speak it is myself that I am reproaching. I do not preach as I should nor does my life follow the principles I preach so inadequately.
  I do not deny that I am guilty, for I see my torpor and my negligence. Perhaps my very recognition of failure will win me pardon from a sympathetic judge. When I lived in a monastic community I was able to keep my tongue from idle topics and to devote my mind almost continually to the discipline of prayer. Since taking on my shoulders the burden of pastoral care, I have been unable to keep steadily recollected because my mind is distracted by many responsibilities.
  I am forced to consider questions affecting churches and monasteries and often I must judge the lives and actions of individuals; at one moment I am forced to take part in certain civil affairs, next I must worry over the incursions of barbarians and fear the wolves who menace the flock entrusted to my care; now I must accept political responsibility in order to give support to those who preserve the rule of law; now I must bear patiently the villainies of brigands, and then I must confront them, yet in all charity.
  My mind is sundered and torn to pieces by the many and serious things I have to think about. When I try to concentrate and gather all my intellectual resources for preaching, how can I do justice to the sacred ministry of the word? I am often compelled by the nature of my position to associate with men of the world and sometimes I relax the discipline of my speech. If I preserved the rigorously inflexible mode of utterance that my conscience dictates, I know that the weaker sort of men would recoil from me and that I could never attract them to the goal I desire for them. So I must frequently listen patiently to their aimless chatter. Because I am weak myself I am drawn gradually into idle talk and I find myself saying the kind of thing that I didn’t even care to listen to before. I enjoy lying back where I once was loath to stumble.
  Who am I — what kind of watchman am I? I do not stand on the pinnacle of achievement, I languish rather in the depths of my weakness. And yet the creator and redeemer of mankind can give me, unworthy though I be, the grace to see life whole and power to speak effectively of it. It is for love of him that I do not spare myself in preaching him.
℟. E fonte Scripturárum morália et mýstica próferens, fluénta Evangélii in pópulos derivávit;* Et defúnctus adhuc lóquitur.
℣. Velut áquila perlústrans mundum, amplitúdine caritátis maióribus et mínimis próvidet.* Et defúnctus.
Gregory’s teaching on morals and on the mystical life sprang from the source of holy scripture; through him the living water of the gospel flowed out to all nations, and he who now is dead still speaks to us.
As an eagle’s glance encompasses the earth beneath it, Gregory’s boundless charity encompasses all men, both great and small, and he who now is dead still speaks to us.

  Deus, qui pópulis tuis indulgéntia cónsulis et amóre domináris, da spíritum sapiéntiæ, intercedénte beáto Gregório papa, quibus dedísti régimen disciplínæ, ut de proféctu sanctárum óvium fiant gáudia ætérna pastórum. Per Dóminum.
Let us pray.
God our Father, your rule is a rule of love,
  your providence is full of mercy for your people.
Through the intercession of Saint Gregory
  grant the spirit of wisdom to those you have placed in authority,
  so that the spiritual growth of the people may bring eternal joy to the pastors.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
  who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
  one God, for ever and ever.

Benedicámus Dómino.
– Deo grátias.
Let us praise the Lord.
– Thanks be to God.

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