Universalis
Tuesday 18 December 2018    (other days)
18 December 

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
The co-eternal Son
A maiden’s offspring see;
A servant’s form Christ putteth on,
To set his people free.
Daughter of Sion, rise
To greet thine infant King;
Nor let thy stubborn heart despise
The pardon he doth bring.
Let deeds of darkness fly
Before the approaching morn;
For unto sin ’tis ours to die
And serve the Virgin-born.
Our joyful praises sing,
To Christ, that set us free;
Like tribute to the Father bring,
And, Holy Ghost, to thee.

Psalm 67 (68)
The Lord's triumphal journey
Let God arise, let those who hate him flee before him.
God arises and his enemies are scattered:
  those who hate him flee from his sight.
You blow them away like wisps of smoke;
  as wax melts in front of a fire,
  so the wicked melt away before God.
The righteous are glad and exult in God’s sight;
  they rejoice in their gladness.
Sing to the Lord and celebrate his name!
Make a road for him who rides upon the clouds –
  “The Lord” is his name.
Rejoice in his sight,
  the father of orphans, defender of widows,
  God in his holy dwelling-place,
God, who gives the lonely a house to dwell in,
  God, who leads captives out into prosperity;
  but the rebellious shall live in a desert land.
God, when you set out in the sight of your people,
  when you crossed the wilderness – the earth shook.
The heavens sent down dew at your coming –
  the God of Sinai, the God of Israel.
At your bidding the rains came, O God,
  your inheritance was worn out but you refreshed it.
All your creatures took up residence there,
  in your goodness you made a place for the needy.
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.
Let God arise, let those who hate him flee before him.

Psalm 67 (68)
This God of ours is a God who saves. The Lord holds the keys of death.
The Lord gives out the word,
  and a great army of maidens brings the news:
“The kings of the armies are fleeing, they are fleeing,
  and the fair one at home is dividing the spoils.
While you sleep among the sheepfolds,
  the wings of the dove shine with silver,
  her feathers glow with green gold.
Through her the Almighty scatters the kings,
  and the mountain of Zalmon is white with snow.”
The mountain of Bashan is God’s mountain;
  the mountain of God is a high-peaked mountain.
Why do you envy it, you high-peaked mountains,
  envy the mountain that God has chosen?
  The Lord will dwell there for ever.
The chariots of God are ten thousand thousand:
  the Lord has come from Sinai to his holy sanctuary.
You have scaled the heights, you have taken captives,
  you have received men as gifts
  so that even the rebels live with the Lord God.
Blessings on the Lord, day after day!
  God will carry us, God our saviour.
Our God is a God of salvation,
  our Lord is a Lord who rescues from death.
Truly God will break the heads of his enemies,
  take the scalps of those who tread the path of crime.
The Lord has spoken:
  “I shall bring them back from Bashan,
  I shall bring them back from the depths of the sea,
so that your feet may be dipped in blood
  and the tongues of your dogs receive food from your enemies.”
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.
This God of ours is a God who saves. The Lord holds the keys of death.

Psalm 67 (68)
Kingdoms of the earth, sing to God, praise the Lord.
They have seen your processions, O God,
  the processions of God, my king, to his sanctuary.
First came the singers, last the musicians,
  between them the maidens playing their drums.
“Bless God in the assemblies:
  bless the Lord, you who spring from Israel!”
There was young Benjamin, leading them,
  the princes of Judah in their rich robes,
  the princes of Zebulun, the princes of Naphtali.
O God, command in your strength;
  make firm what you have achieved in us.
From your temple in Jerusalem,
  kings shall bring you tribute.
Rebuke the wild beast of the reeds,
  the herd of bulls, the lords of peoples.
  Let them lie prostrate before you with tribute of silver.
Scatter the peoples that delight in war.
  Nobles will come from Egypt,
  Ethiopia will stretch out its hands to God.
Kingdoms of the earth, sing to God;
  celebrate the Lord.
Sing to God who rides on the highest heavens,
  at the origin of all things.
Listen! – he speaks, a voice of power.
Acknowledge the strength of the Lord:
  his majesty is over Israel,
  his strength is in the clouds.
God inspires awe in his holy place;
  he, the God of Israel, gives power to his people;
  he gives them strength.
Blessed be God!
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.
Kingdoms of the earth, sing to God, praise the Lord.

℣. Lift up your heads and see.
℟. Your redemption is at hand.

First ReadingIsaiah 46:1-13 ©
Babylonian idols are condemned by the Lord
Bel is crouching. Nebo cringing.
Their idols are being loaded on animals, on beasts of burden,
carried off like bundles on weary beasts.
They are cringing and crouching together,
powerless to save the ones who carry them,
as they themselves go off into captivity.
‘Listen to me, House of Jacob,
all you who remain of the House of Israel,
you who have been carried since birth,
whom I have carried since the time you were born.
‘In your old age I shall be still the same,
when your hair is grey I shall still support you.
I have already done so, I have carried you,
I shall still support and deliver you.’
To whom can you compare me, equate me,
to whom claim I am similar, or comparable?
These prodigals weigh out gold from their purses
and silver on the scales.
They engage a goldsmith to make a god
then worship and prostrate themselves before it.
They lift it on their shoulders and carry it,
and put it where it is meant to stand.
It never moves from the spot.
You may invoke it, it never replies,
It never saves anyone in trouble.
Remember this and be dismayed,
stir your memories again, you sinners,
remember things long past.
I am God unrivalled
God who has no like.
From the beginning I foretold the future,
and predicted beforehand what is to be.
I say: My purpose shall last;
I will do whatever I choose.
I call a bird of prey from the east,
my man of destiny from a far country.
No sooner is it said than done,
no sooner planned than performed.
Listen to me, faint hearts,
who feel far from victory.
I bring my victory near, already it is close,
my salvation will not be late.
I will give salvation to Zion,
my glory shall be for Israel.
ResponsoryIs 46:12-13
℟. Listen to me, faint hearts, who feel far from victory.* I will give salvation to Zion, Israel shall have sight of my glory.
℣. I will bring my victory near, already it is close, my salvation will not be late.* I will give salvation to Zion, Israel shall have sight of my glory.

Second Reading
From the Letter to Diognetus
God showed his love through his Son
No man has ever seen God or known him, but God has revealed himself to us through faith, by which alone it is possible to see him. God, the Lord and maker of all things, who created the world and set it in order, not only loved man but was also patient with him. So he has always been, and is, and will be: kind, good, free from anger, truthful; indeed, he and he alone is good.
  He devised a plan, a great and wonderful plan, and shared it only with his Son. As long as he preserved this secrecy and kept his own wise counsel he seemed to be neglecting us, to have no concern for us. But when through his beloved Son he revealed and made public what he had prepared from the very beginning, he gave us all at once gifts such as we could never have dreamt of, even sight and knowledge of himself.
  When God had made all his plans in consultation with his Son, he waited until a later time, allowing us to follow our own whim, to be swept along by unruly passions, to be led astray by pleasure and desire. Not that he was pleased by our sins: he only tolerated them. Not that he approved of that time of sin: he was planning this era of holiness. When we had been shown to be undeserving of life, his goodness was to make us worthy of it. When we had made it clear that we could not enter God’s kingdom by our own power, we were to be enabled to do so by the power of God.
  When our wickedness had reached its culmination, it became clear that retribution was at hand in the shape of suffering and death. The time came then for God to make known his kindness and power (how immeasurable is God’s generosity and love!). He did not show hatred for us or reject us or take vengeance; instead, he was patient with us, bore with us, and in compassion took our sins upon himself; he gave his own Son as the price of our redemption, the holy one to redeem the wicked, the sinless one to redeem sinners, the just one to redeem the unjust, the incorruptible one to redeem the corruptible, the immortal one to redeem mortals. For what else could have covered our sins but his sinlessness? Where else could we, wicked and sinful as we were, have found the means of holiness except in the Son of God alone?
  How wonderful a transformation, how mysterious a design, how inconceivable a blessing! The wickedness of the many is covered up in the holy One, and the holiness of One sanctifies many sinners.
Responsory
℟. There is salvation in no-one else,* for there is no other name under heaven granted to men by which we may receive salvation.
℣. His name will be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace,* for there is no other name under heaven granted to men by which we may receive salvation.

Let us pray.
By the long-awaited coming of your new-born Son
  deliver us, Lord,
  from the age-old bondage of sin.
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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