Universalis
Tuesday 31 March 2015    (other days)
Tuesday of Holy Week

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.

Hymn
Sing, my tongue, the glorious battle,
sing the last, the dread affray;
o’er the cross, the victor’s trophy,
sound the high triumphal lay,
how, the pains of death enduring,
earth’s Redeemer won the day.
When at length the appointed fulness
of the sacred time was come,
he was sent, the world’s Creator,
from the Father’s heavenly home,
and was found in human fashion,
offspring of the virgin’s womb.
Now the thirty years are ended
which on earth he willed to see.
Willingly he meets his passion,
born to set his people free:
on the cross the Lamb is lifted,
there the sacrifice to be.
There the nails and spear he suffers,
vinegar and gall and reed.
From his sacred body piercèd
blood and water both proceed:
precious flood, which all creation
from the stain of sin hath freed.
Faithful Cross, above all other,
one and only noble Tree.
none in foliage, none in blossom,
none in fruit thy peer may be.
Sweet the wood and sweet the iron,
and thy load, most sweet is he.
Bend, O lofty Tree, thy branches,
thy too rigid sinews bend;
and awhile the stubborn harshness,
which thy birth bestowed, suspend;
and the limbs of heaven’s high Monarch
gently on thine arms extend.
Thou alone wast counted worthy
this world’s ransom to sustain,
that a shipwrecked race for ever
might a port of refuge gain,
with the sacred Blood anointed
of the Lamb for sinners slain.
Praise and honour to the Father,
praise and honour to the Son,
praise and honour to the Spirit,
ever Three and ever One:
One in might and One in glory,
while eternal ages run.

Psalm 36 (37)
The fate of the evil and the righteous
Commit your life to the Lord, and he will act on your behalf.
Do not envy the wicked;
  do not be jealous of those that do evil.
They will dry up as quickly as hay;
  they will wither like the grass.
Put your trust in the Lord and do good,
  and your land and habitation will be secure.
Take your delight in the Lord,
  and he will give you what your heart desires.
Entrust your journey to the Lord, and hope in him:
  and he will act.
He will make your uprightness shine like the light,
  your judgement like the sun at noon.
Take your rest in the Lord, and hope in him:
  do not envy the one who thrives in his own way,
  the man who weaves plots.
Abstain from wrath, abandon anger:
  do not envy him who turns to evil,
for those who do evil will be destroyed,
  but those on the side of the Lord
  will inherit the earth.
A moment yet – and the sinner will be gone:
  you will look where he was and find nothing.
But the needy will inherit the land
  and delight in abundant peace.
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.
Commit your life to the Lord, and he will act on your behalf.

Psalm 36 (37)
Turn away from evil and do good: the Lord will support the just.
The wicked will plot against the righteous
  and gnash his teeth at him;
but the Lord will deride him in his turn,
  for the Lord has seen what awaits him.
The wicked have pulled out their swords,
  the wicked have drawn their bows,
to throw down the poor and the destitute,
  to murder whoever follows the straight path.
But their swords will enter their own hearts,
  and their bows will splinter.
For the righteous, the little they have is better
  than the abundant wealth of the wicked.
The limbs of the wicked will be broken
  while the Lord gives his strength to the just.
The Lord knows when the day of the perfect will come;
  and their inheritance will be eternal.
They will not be troubled in evil times,
  and in times of famine they will have more than enough.
For the wicked will perish:
  the enemies of the Lord will be like the flowers of the fields,
  and like smoke they will vanish away.
The wicked man borrows and does not return;
  but the righteous takes pity and gives.
The blessed ones of the Lord will inherit the earth,
  but those whom he curses will be cut off.
It is the Lord who strengthens the steps of man
  and chooses his path.
Even if he trips he will not fall flat,
  for the Lord is holding his hand.
I was young and I have grown old,
  but I have not seen the righteous man abandoned
  nor his children seeking for bread.
All day long he takes pity and lends,
  and his seed will be blessed.
Shun evil and do good,
  and you will live for ever.
For the Lord loves right judgement,
  and will not abandon his chosen ones.
The unjust will be destroyed for ever,
  and the seed of the wicked will be cut off,
but the righteous will inherit the earth
  and live there from age to age.
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.
Turn away from evil and do good: the Lord will support the just.

Psalm 36 (37)
Wait for the Lord, keep to his way.
The mouth of the righteous will speak wisdom,
  and his tongue will utter right judgement.
The law of his God is in his heart
  and his steps will not stumble.
The wicked man watches the just
  and seeks to kill him;
but the Lord will rescue the just man from his hands
  and not condemn the just in the time of judgement.
Put your hope in the Lord and follow his paths,
  and he will raise you up and make the land your inheritance,
  let you watch as the wicked are cut off.
I have seen the sinner triumph,
  flourish like a green cedar,
but he is gone, he is there no longer:
  I have looked for him but have not found him.
Preserve innocence, follow uprightness:
  for the future belongs to the man of peace.
The unrighteous will be destroyed altogether,
  their posterity will be cut off.
The salvation of the righteous is from the Lord,
  and their protection in time of trouble.
The Lord will come to their help and free them,
  rescue them from the wicked and save them,
  because they have put their trust in him.
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.
Wait for the Lord, keep to his way.

When I am lifted up from the earth
I shall draw all things to myself.

First ReadingHebrews 12:1-13 ©
With so many witnesses in a great cloud on every side of us, we too, then, should throw off everything that hinders us, especially the sin that clings so easily, and keep running steadily in the race we have started. Let us not lose sight of Jesus, who leads us in our faith and brings it to perfection: for the sake of the joy which was still in the future, he endured the cross, disregarding the shamefulness of it, and from now on has taken his place at the right of God’s throne. Think of the way he stood such opposition from sinners and then you will not give up for want of courage. In the fight against sin, you have not yet had to keep fighting to the point of death.
  Have you forgotten that encouraging text in which you are addressed as sons? My son, when the Lord corrects you, do not treat it lightly; but do not get discouraged when he reprimands you. For the Lord trains the ones that he loves and he punishes all those that he acknowledges as his sons. Suffering is part of your training; God is treating you as his sons. Has there ever been any son whose father did not train him? If you were not getting this training, as all of you are, then you would not be sons but bastards. Besides, we have all had our human fathers who punished us, and we respected them for it; we ought to be even more willing to submit ourselves to our spiritual Father, to be given life. Our human fathers were thinking of this short life when they punished us, and could only do what they thought best; but he does it all for our own good, so that we may share his own holiness. Of course, any punishment is most painful at the time, and far from pleasant; but later, in those on whom it has been used, it bears fruit in peace and goodness. So hold up your limp arms and steady your trembling knees and smooth out the path you tread; then the injured limb will not be wrenched, it will grow strong again.
Responsory
Jesus, who leads us in our faith and brings it to perfection, for the sake of the joy which was still in the future, he endured the cross, and now he has taken his place at God’s right hand.
He was humble and walked the path of obedience to death, and now he has taken his place at God’s right hand.

Second Reading
From the book On the Holy Spirit by Saint Basil, bishop
By one death and resurrection the world was saved
When mankind was estranged from him by disobedience, God our Saviour made a plan for raising us from our fall and restoring us to friendship with himself. According to this plan Christ came in the flesh, he showed us the gospel way of life, he suffered, died on the cross, was buried and rose from the dead. He did this so that we could be saved by imitation of him, and recover our original status as sons of God by adoption.
  To attain holiness, then, we must not only pattern our lives on Christ’s by being gentle, humble and patient, we must also imitate him in his death. Taking Christ for his model, Paul said that he wanted to become like him in his death in the hope that he too would be raised from death to life.
  We imitate Christ’s death by being buried with him in baptism. If we ask what this kind of burial means and what benefit we may hope to derive from it, it means first of all making a complete break with our former way of life, and our Lord himself said that this cannot be done unless a man is born again. In other words, we have to begin a new life, and we cannot do so until our previous life has been brought to an end. When runners reach the turning point on a racecourse, they have to pause briefly before they can go back in the opposite direction. So also when we wish to reverse the direction of our lives there must be a pause, or a death, to mark the end of one life and the beginning of another.
  Our descent into hell takes place when we imitate the burial of Christ by our baptism. The bodies of the baptized are in a sense buried in the water as a symbol of their renunciation of the sins of their unregenerate nature. As the Apostle says: The circumcision you have undergone is not an operation performed by human hands, but the complete stripping away of your unregenerate nature. This is the circumcision that Christ gave us, and it is accomplished by our burial with him in baptism. Baptism cleanses the soul from the pollution of worldly thoughts and inclinations: You will wash me, says the psalmist, and I shall be whiter than snow. We receive this saving baptism only once because there was only one death and one resurrection for the salvation of the world, and baptism is its symbol.
Responsory
When we were baptized in Christ Jesus we were baptized in his death; if in union with him we have imitated his death, we shall also imitate him in his resurrection.
When we were baptized we went into the tomb with him and joined him in death; if in union with him we have imitated his death, we shall also imitate him in his resurrection.

Let us pray.
All-powerful, ever-living God,
  may our sacramental celebration of the Lord’s passion
  bring us your forgiveness.
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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