Universalis
Sunday 29 March 2015    (other days)
Palm Sunday

Office of Readings

If you have already recited the Invitatory Psalm today, you should use the alternative opening.


Lord, open our lips.
  And we shall praise your name.
Invitatory PsalmPsalm 94 (95)
Christ the Lord was tempted and suffered for us: come, let us adore him.
(repeat antiphon*)
Come, let us rejoice in the Lord,
  let us acclaim God our salvation.
Let us come before him proclaiming our thanks,
  let us acclaim him with songs.
(repeat antiphon*)
For the Lord is a great God,
  a king above all gods.
For he holds the depths of the earth in his hands,
  and the peaks of the mountains are his.
For the sea is his: he made it;
  and his hands formed the dry land.
(repeat antiphon*)
Come, let us worship and bow down,
  bend the knee before the Lord who made us;
for he himself is our God and we are his flock,
  the sheep that follow his hand.
(repeat antiphon*)
If only, today, you would listen to his voice:
  “Do not harden your hearts
  as you did at Meribah,
on the day of Massah in the desert,
  when your fathers tested me –
they put me to the test,
  although they had seen my works.”
(repeat antiphon*)
“For forty years they wearied me,
  that generation.
I said: their hearts are wandering,
  they do not know my paths.
I swore in my anger:
  they will never enter my place of rest.”
(repeat antiphon*)
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.
Christ the Lord was tempted and suffered for us: come, let us adore him.*

* If you are reciting this on your own, you can choose to say the antiphon once only at the start of the psalm and not repeat it.


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 103 (104)
Hymn to God the Creator
Lord God, how great you are, clothed in majesty and glory, wrapped in light as in a robe.
Bless the Lord, my soul!
  Lord, my God, how great you are!
You are robed in majesty and splendour;
  you are wrapped in light as in a cloak.
You stretch out the sky like an awning,
  you build your palace upon the waters.
You make the clouds your chariot,
  you walk upon the wings of the wind.
You make the breezes your messengers,
  you make burning fire your minister.
You set the earth upon its foundation:
  from age to age it will stand firm.
Deep oceans covered it like a garment,
  and the waters stood high above the mountains;
but you rebuked them and they fled;
  at the sound of your thunder they fled in terror.
They rise to the mountains or sink to the valleys,
  to the places you have decreed for them.
You have given them a boundary they must not cross;
  they will never come back to cover the earth.
You make springs arise to feed the streams,
  that flow in the midst of the mountains.
All the beasts of the field will drink from them
  and the wild asses will quench their thirst.
Above them will nest the birds of the sky,
  from among the branches their voices will sound.
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 God, how great you are, clothed in majesty and glory, wrapped in light as in a robe.

Psalm 103 (104)
The Lord brought forth bread from the earth and wine, to cheer man’s heart.
From your palace you water the mountains,
  and thus you give plenty to the earth.
You bring forth grass for the cattle,
  and plants for the service of man.
You bring forth bread from the land,
  and wine to make man’s heart rejoice.
Oil, to make the face shine;
  and bread to make man’s heart strong.
The trees of the Lord have all that they need,
  and the cedars of Lebanon, that he planted.
Small birds will nest there,
  and storks at the tops of the trees.
For wild goats there are the high mountains;
  the crags are a refuge for the coneys.
He made the moon so that time could be measured;
  the sun knows the hour of its setting.
You send shadows, and night falls:
  then all the beasts of the woods come out,
lion cubs roaring for their prey,
  asking God for their food.
When the sun rises they come back together
  to lie in their lairs;
man goes out to his labour,
  and works until evening.
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 brought forth bread from the earth and wine, to cheer man’s heart.

Psalm 103 (104)
God saw all he had made, and indeed it was very good.
How many are your works, O Lord!
  You have made all things in your wisdom,
  and the earth is full of your creatures.
The sea is broad and immense:
  sea-creatures swim there, both small and large,
  too many to count.
Ships sail across it;
  Leviathan lives there, the monster;
  you made him to play with.
All of them look to you
  to give them their food when they need it.
You give it to them, and they gather;
  you open your hand, they are filled with good things.
But turn away, and they are dismayed;
  take away their breath, and they die,
  once more they will turn into dust.
You will send forth your breath, they will come to life;
  you will renew the face of the earth.
Glory be to the Lord, for ever;
  let the Lord rejoice in his works.
He turns his gaze to the earth, and it trembles;
  he touches the mountains, and they smoke.
I will sing to the Lord all my life;
  as long as I exist, I will sing songs to God.
May my praises be pleasing to him;
  truly I will delight in the Lord.
Let sinners perish from the earth,
  let the wicked vanish from existence.
Bless the Lord, my soul!
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.
God saw all he had made, and indeed it was very good.

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

First ReadingHebrews 10:1-18 ©
Since the Law has no more than a reflection of these realities, and no finished picture of them, it is quite incapable of bringing the worshippers to perfection, with the same sacrifices repeatedly offered year after year. Otherwise, the offering of them would have stopped, because the worshippers, when they had been purified once, would have no awareness of sins. Instead of that, the sins are recalled year after year in the sacrifices. Bulls’ blood and goats’ blood are useless for taking away sins, and this is what he said, on coming into the world:
You who wanted no sacrifice or oblation,
prepared a body for me.
You took no pleasure in holocausts or sacrifices for sin;
then I said,
just as I was commanded in the scroll of the book,
‘God, here I am! I am coming to obey your will.’
Notice that he says first: You did not want what the Law lays down as the things to be offered, that is: the sacrifices, the oblations, the holocausts and the sacrifices for sin, and you took no pleasure in them; and then he says: Here I am! I am coming to obey your will. He is abolishing the first sort to replace it with the second. And this will was for us to be made holy by the offering of his body made once and for all by Jesus Christ.
  All the priests stand at their duties every day, offering over and over again the same sacrifices which are quite incapable of taking sins away. He, on the other hand, has offered one single sacrifice for sins, and then taken his place forever, at the right hand of God, where he is now waiting until his enemies are made into a footstool for him. By virtue of that one single offering, he has achieved the eternal perfection of all whom he is sanctifying. The Holy Spirit assures us of this; for he says, first:
This is the covenant I will make with them
when those days arrive;
and the Lord then goes on to say:
I will put my laws into their hearts
and write them on their minds.
I will never call their sins to mind,
or their offences.
When all sins have been forgiven, there can be no more sin offerings.
Responsory
You do not ask for sacrifice and offerings, but you have prepared a body for me. You do not ask for holocaust and victim; then I said: ‘Here I am, O God, I come to do your will.’
The blood of bulls and goats can never take sins away. For this reason, when Christ was about to come into the world, he said: ‘Here I am, O God, I come to do your will.’

Second Reading
From a sermon by Saint Andrew of Crete, bishop
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. blessed is the King of Israel.
Let us go together to meet Christ on the Mount of Olives. Today he returns from Bethany and proceeds of his own free will toward his holy and blessed passion, to consummate the mystery of our salvation. He who came down from heaven to raise us from the depths of sin, to raise us with himself, we are told in Scripture, above every sovereignty, authority and power, and every other name that can be named, now comes of his own free will to make his journey to Jerusalem. He comes without pomp or ostentation. As the psalmist says: He will not dispute or raise his voice to make it heard in the streets. He will be meek and humble, and he will make his entry in simplicity.
  Let us run to accompany him as he hastens toward his passion, and imitate those who met him then, not by covering his path with garments, olive branches or palms, but by doing all we can to prostrate ourselves before him by being humble and by trying to live as he would wish. Then we shall be able to receive the Word at his coming, and God, whom no limits can contain, will be within us.
  In his humility Christ entered the dark regions of our fallen world and he is glad that he became so humble for our sake, glad that he came and lived among us and shared in our nature in order to raise us up again to himself. And even though we are told that he has now ascended above the highest heavens – the proof, surely, of his power and godhead – his love for man will never rest until he has raised our earthbound nature from glory to glory, and made it one with his own in heaven.
  So let us spread before his feet, not garments or soulless olive branches, which delight the eye for a few hours and then wither, but ourselves, clothed in his grace, or rather, clothed completely in him. We who have been baptized into Christ must ourselves be the garments that we spread before him. Now that the crimson stains of our sins have been washed away in the saving waters of baptism and we have become white as pure wool, let us present the conqueror of death, not with mere branches of palms but with the real rewards of his victory. Let our souls take the place of the welcoming branches as we join today in the children’s holy song: Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Blessed is the king of Israel.
Responsory
When the people heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem, they went out to meet him. Great crowds of people spread their cloaks on the road while others spread branches in his path, and they shouted, Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessings on him who comes in the name of the Lord!
The crowds who went in front of him and those who followed all shouted aloud, Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessings on him who comes in the name of the Lord!

Let us pray.
Almighty, ever-living God,
  you gave our Saviour the command
  to become man and undergo the cross
  as an example of humility for all men to follow.
We have the lessons of his sufferings:
  give us also the fellowship of his resurrection.
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.

You can also view this page in Latin and English.

Copyright © 1996-2014 Universalis Publishing Limited: see www.universalis.com. Scripture readings from the Jerusalem Bible are published and copyright © 1966, 1967 and 1968 by Darton, Longman & Todd, Ltd and Doubleday, a division of Random House, Inc, and used by permission of the publishers.

 
This web site © Copyright 1996-2015 Universalis Publishing Ltd (contact us)
(top