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Catholic Caucus: Daily Mass Readings, 05-17-12, Solemnity, Ascension of the Lord
USCCB.org/RNAB ^ | 05-17-12 | Revised New American Bible

Posted on 05/16/2012 10:32:03 PM PDT by Salvation

May 17, 2012

Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord

Reading 1 Acts 1:1-11

In the first book, Theophilus,
I dealt with all that Jesus did and taught
until the day he was taken up,
after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit
to the apostles whom he had chosen.
He presented himself alive to them
by many proofs after he had suffered,
appearing to them during forty days
and speaking about the kingdom of God.
While meeting with them,
he enjoined them not to depart from Jerusalem,
but to wait for "the promise of the Father
about which you have heard me speak;
for John baptized with water,
but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit."

When they had gathered together they asked him,
"Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?"
He answered them, "It is not for you to know the times or seasons
that the Father has established by his own authority.
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you,
and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem,
throughout Judea and Samaria,
and to the ends of the earth."
When he had said this, as they were looking on,
he was lifted up, and a cloud took him from their sight.
While they were looking intently at the sky as he was going,
suddenly two men dressed in white garments stood beside them.
They said, "Men of Galilee,
why are you standing there looking at the sky?
This Jesus who has been taken up from you into heaven
will return in the same way as you have seen him going into heaven."

Responsorial Psalm Ps 47:2-3, 6-7, 8-9

R. (6) God mounts his throne to shouts of joy: a blare of trumpets for the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
All you peoples, clap your hands,
shout to God with cries of gladness,
For the LORD, the Most High, the awesome,
is the great king over all the earth.
R. God mounts his throne to shouts of joy: a blare of trumpets for the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
God mounts his throne amid shouts of joy;
the LORD, amid trumpet blasts.
Sing praise to God, sing praise;
sing praise to our king, sing praise.
R. God mounts his throne to shouts of joy: a blare of trumpets for the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
For king of all the earth is God;
sing hymns of praise.
God reigns over the nations,
God sits upon his holy throne.
R. God mounts his throne to shouts of joy: a blare of trumpets for the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.

Reading 2 Eph 1:17-23

Brothers and sisters:
May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory,
give you a Spirit of wisdom and revelation
resulting in knowledge of him.
May the eyes of your hearts be enlightened,
that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call,
what are the riches of glory
in his inheritance among the holy ones,
and what is the surpassing greatness of his power
for us who believe,
in accord with the exercise of his great might,
which he worked in Christ,
raising him from the dead
and seating him at his right hand in the heavens,
far above every principality, authority, power, and dominion,
and every name that is named
not only in this age but also in the one to come.
And he put all things beneath his feet
and gave him as head over all things to the church,
which is his body,
the fullness of the one who fills all things in every way.

or Eph 4:1-13

Brothers and sisters,
I, a prisoner for the Lord,
urge you to live in a manner worthy of the call you have received,
with all humility and gentleness, with patience,
bearing with one another through love,
striving to preserve the unity of the spirit
through the bond of peace:
one body and one Spirit,
as you were also called to the one hope of your call;
one Lord, one faith, one baptism;
one God and Father of all,
who is over all and through all and in all.

But grace was given to each of us
according to the measure of Christ's gift.
Therefore, it says:
He ascended on high and took prisoners captive;
he gave gifts to men.
What does "he ascended" mean except that he also descended
into the lower regions of the earth?
The one who descended is also the one who ascended
far above all the heavens,
that he might fill all things.

And he gave some as apostles, others as prophets,
others as evangelists, others as pastors and teachers,
to equip the holy ones for the work of ministry,
for building up the body of Christ,
until we all attain to the unity of faith
and knowledge of the Son of God, to mature to manhood,
to the extent of the full stature of Christ.

or Eph 4:1-7, 11-13

Brothers and sisters,
I, a prisoner for the Lord,
urge you to live in a manner worthy of the calling
you have received,
with all humility and gentleness, with patience,
bearing with one another through love,
striving to preserve the unity of the Spirit
through the bond of peace:
one body and one Spirit,
as you were also called to the one hope of your calling;
one Lord, one faith, one baptism;
one God and Father of all,
who is over all and through all and in all.

But grace was given to each of us
according to the measure of Christ's gift.

And he gave some as apostles, others as prophets,
others as evangelists, others as pastors and teachers,
to equip the holy ones for the work of ministry,
for building up the body of Christ,
until we all attain to the unity of faith
and knowledge of the Son of God, to mature to manhood,
to the extent of the full stature of Christ.

Gospel Mk 16:15-20

Jesus said to his disciples:
"Go into the whole world
and proclaim the gospel to every creature.
Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved;
whoever does not believe will be condemned.
These signs will accompany those who believe:
in my name they will drive out demons,
they will speak new languages.
They will pick up serpents with their hands,
and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not harm them.
They will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover."

So then the Lord Jesus, after he spoke to them,
was taken up into heaven
and took his seat at the right hand of God.
But they went forth and preached everywhere,
while the Lord worked with them
and confirmed the word through accompanying signs.


TOPICS: Catholic; General Discusssion; Prayer; Worship
KEYWORDS: catholic; easter; saints
For your reading, reflection, faith-sharing, comments, questions, discussion.

1 posted on 05/16/2012 10:32:12 PM PDT by Salvation
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To: All
Since the Bishops of the U. S. have transferred Ascension Thurday to the following Sunday, you may hear these readings

May 17, 2012

Thursday of the Sixth Week of Easter

 

Reading 1 Acts 18:1-8

Paul left Athens and went to Corinth.
There he met a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus,
who had recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla
because Claudius had ordered all the Jews to leave Rome.
He went to visit them and, because he practiced the same trade,
stayed with them and worked, for they were tentmakers by trade.
Every sabbath, he entered into discussions in the synagogue,
attempting to convince both Jews and Greeks.

When Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia,
Paul began to occupy himself totally with preaching the word,
testifying to the Jews that the Christ was Jesus.
When they opposed him and reviled him,
he shook out his garments and said to them,
“Your blood be on your heads!
I am clear of responsibility.
From now on I will go to the Gentiles.”
So he left there and went to a house
belonging to a man named Titus Justus, a worshiper of God;
his house was next to a synagogue.
Crispus, the synagogue official, came to believe in the Lord
along with his entire household, and many of the Corinthians
who heard believed and were baptized.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 98:1, 2-3ab, 3cd-4

R. (see 2b)  The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
or: 
R. Alleluia.

Sing to the LORD a new song,
for he has done wondrous deeds;
His right hand has won victory for him,
his holy arm.
R. The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
or:
R. Alleluia.

The LORD has made his salvation known:
in the sight of the nations he has revealed his justice.
He has remembered his kindness and his faithfulness
toward the house of Israel.
R. The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
or:
R. Alleluia.

All the ends of the earth have seen
the salvation by our God.
Sing joyfully to the LORD, all you lands;
break into song; sing praise.
R. The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
or:
R. Alleluia.

Gospel Jn 16:16-20

Jesus said to his disciples:
“A little while and you will no longer see me,
and again a little while later and you will see me.”
So some of his disciples said to one another,
“What does this mean that he is saying to us,
‘A little while and you will not see me,
and again a little while and you will see me,’
and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?”
So they said, “What is this ‘little while’ of which he speaks?
We do not know what he means.”
Jesus knew that they wanted to ask him, so he said to them,
“Are you discussing with one another what I said,
‘A little while and you will not see me,
and again a little while and you will see me’?
Amen, amen, I say to you,
you will weep and mourn, while the world rejoices;
you will grieve, but your grief will become joy.”

2 posted on 05/16/2012 10:35:59 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: nickcarraway; NYer; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; ArrogantBustard; Catholicguy; RobbyS; marshmallow; ...
Alleluia Ping!
 
If you aren’t on this ping list NOW and would like to be, 
please Freepmail me.

3 posted on 05/16/2012 10:39:32 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

From: Acts 1:1-11

Prologue


[1] In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do
and teach, [2] until the day when he was taken up, after he had given command-
ment through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. [3] To them
he presented himself alive after his passion by many proofs, appearing to them
during forty days, and speaking of the kingdom of God. [4] And while staying with
them he charged them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise
of the Father, which, he said, “you heard from me, [5] for John baptized with wa-
ter, but before many days you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”

The Ascension


[6] So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time
restore the kingdom of Israel?” [7] He said to them, “It is not for you to know times
or seasons which the Father has fixed by his own authority. [8] But you shall re-
ceive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be my witnes-
ses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth.” [9]
And when he had said this, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud
took him out of their sight. [10] And while they were gazing into heaven as he went,
behold, two men stood by them in white robes, [11] and said, “Men of Galilee, why
do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into
heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

1-5. St Luke is the only New Testament author to begin his book with a prologue,
in the style of secular historians. The main aim of this preface is to convey to the
reader the profoundly religious character of the book which he is holding in his
hands. It is a work which will give an account of events marking the fulfillment of
the promises made by the God of Israel the Creator and Savior of the world. Un-
der the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, into his book St Luke weaves quotations
from the Psalms, Isaiah, Amos and Joel; it both reflects the Old Testament and
interprets it in the light of its fulfillment in Jesus Christ.

The prologue refers to St Luke’s Gospel as a “first book”. It mentions the last e-
vents of our Lord’s life on earth—the appearances of the risen Christ and his as-
cension into heaven—and links them up with the account which is now beginning.

St Luke’s aim is to describe the origins and the early growth of this Christianity,
of which the main protagonist of this book, the Holy Spirit, has been the cause.
Yet this is not simply an historical record: the Acts of the Apostles, St Jerome
explains, “seems to be a straightforward historical account of the early years of
the nascent Church. But if we bear in mind it is written by Luke the physician,
who is praised in the Gospel (cf. 2 Cor 8: 18), we will realize that everything he
says is medicine for the ailing soul” (”Epistle” 53, 9).

The spiritual dimension of this book, which is one of a piece with the Third Gos-
pel, nourished the soul of the first generations of Christians, providing them with
a chronicle of God’s faithful and loving support of the new Israel. “This book”, St.
John Chrysostom writes at the start of his great commentary, “will profit us no
less than the Gospels, so replete is it with Christian wisdom and sound doctrine.
It offers an account of the numerous miracles worked by the Holy Spirit. It con-
tains the fulfillment of the prophecies of Jesus Christ recorded in the Gospel; we
can observe in the very facts the bright evidence of Truth which shines in them,
and the mighty change which is taking place in the Apostles: they become per-
fect men, extraordinary men, now that the Holy Spirit has come upon them. All
Christ’s promises and predictions—He who believes in me will do these and even
greater works, you will be dragged before tribunals and kings and beaten in the
synagogues, and will suffer grievous things, and yet you will overcome your per-
secutors and executioners and will bring the Gospel to the ends of the earth—all
this, how it came to pass, may be seen in this admirable book. Here you will
see the Apostles speeding their way overland and sea as if on wings. These Ga-
lileans, once so timorous and obtuse, we find suddenly changed into new men,
despising wealth and honor, raised above passion and concupiscence” (”Hom.
on Acts”, 1).

St Luke dedicates this book to Theophilus—as he did his Gospel. The dedication
suggests that Theophilus was an educated Christian, of an upper-class back-
ground, but he may be a fictitious person symbolizing “the beloved of God”, which
is what the name means. It also may imply that Acts was written quite soon after
the third Gospel.

1. “To do and teach”: these words very concisely sum up the work of Jesus Christ,
reported in the Gospels. They describe the way in which God’s saving Revelation
operates: God lovingly announces and reveals himself in the course of human his-
tory through his actions and through his words. “The economy of Revelation is rea-
lized by deeds and words, which are intrinsically bound up with each other”, Vati-
can II teaches. “As a result, the works performed by God in the history of salvation
show forth and bear out the doctrine and realities signified by the words; the words,
for their part, proclaim the works, and bring to light the mystery they contain. The
most intimate truth which this revelation gives us about God and the salvation of
man shines forth in Christ, who is himself both the mediator and the sum total of
Revelation” (”Dei Verbum”, 2).

The Lord “proclaimed the kingdom of the Father both by the testimony of his life
and by the power of his word” (Vatican II, “Lumen Gentium”, 35). He did not limit
himself to speech, to being simply the Teacher whose words opened man’s minds
to the truth. He was, above all, the Redeemer, able to save fallen man through the
divine efficacy of each and every moment of his life on earth.

“Our Lord took on all our weaknesses, which proceed from sin—with the exception
of sin itself. He experienced hunger and thirst, sleep and fatigue, sadness and
tears. He suffered in every possible way, even the supreme suffering of death. No
one could be freed from the bonds of sinfulness had he who alone was totally in-
nocent not been ready to die at the hands of impious men. Therefore, our Savior,
the Son of God, has left all those who believe in him an effective source of aid,
and also an example. The first they obtain by being reborn through grace, the
second by imitating his life” (St Leo the Great, “Twelfth Homily on the Passion”).

Jesus’ redemptive action—his miracles, his life of work, and the mystery of his
death, resurrection and ascension, whose depth and meaning only faith can
plumb—also constitute a simple and powerful stimulus for our everyday conduct.
Faith should always be accompanied by works, by deeds, that is, our humble
and necessary cooperation with God’s saving plans.

“Don’t forget that doing must come before teaching. ‘Coepit facere et docere’, the
holy Scripture says of Jesus Christ: ‘He began to do and to teach. ‘ “First deeds:
so that you and I might learn” (St. J. Escriva, “The Way”, 342).

3. This verse recalls the account in Luke 24:13-43 of the appearances of the risen
Jesus to the disciples of Emmaus and to the Apostles in the Cenacle. It stresses
the figure of forty days. This number may have a literal meaning and also a deeper
meaning. In Sacred Scripture periods of forty days or forty years have a clearly
salvific meaning: they are periods during which God prepares or effects important
stages in his plans. The great flood lasted forty days (Gen 7:17); the Israelites
journeyed in the wilderness for forty years on their way to the promised land (Ps
95:10); Moses spent forty days on Mount Sinai to receive God’s revelation of the
Covenant (Ex 24:18); on the strength of the bread sent by God Elisha walked for-
ty days and forty nights to reach his destination (1 Kings 19:8); and our Lord fas-
ted in the wilderness for forty days in preparation for his public life (Mt 4:2).

5. “You shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit”: this book has been well described
as the “Gospel of the Holy Spirit”. “There is hardly a page in the Acts of the Apos-
tles where we fail to read about the Spirit and the action by which he guides, di-
rects and enlivens the life and work of the early Christian community. It is he who
inspires the preaching of St Peter (cf. Acts 4:8), who strengthens the faith of the
disciples (cf. Acts 4:31), who confirms with his presence the calling of the Gen-
tiles (cf. Acts 10:44-47), who sends Saul and Barnabas to distant lands, where
they will open new paths for the teaching of Jesus (cf. Acts 13:2-4). In a word,
his presence and doctrine are everywhere” (St. Escriva, “Christ Is Passing By”,
127).

6-8. The Apostles’ question shows that they are still thinking in terms of earthly
restoration of the Davidic dynasty. It would seem that for them —as for many
Jews of their time—eschatological hope in the Kingdom extended no further than
expectation of world-embracing Jewish hegemony.

“It seems to me”, St John Chrysostom comments, “that they had not any clear
notion of the nature of the Kingdom, for the Spirit had not yet instructed them.
Notice that they do not ask when it shall come but ‘Will you at this time restore
the Kingdom to Israel?’, as if the Kingdom were something that lay in the past.
This question shows that they were still attracted by earthly things, though less
than they had been” (”Hom. on Acts”, 2).

Our Lord gives an excellent and encouraging reply, patiently telling them that the
Kingdom is mysterious in character, that it comes when one least expects, and
that they need the help of the Holy Spirit to be able to grasp the teaching they
have received. Jesus does not complain about their obtuseness; he simply cor-
rects their ideas and instructs them.

8. The outline of Acts is given here: the author plans to tell the story of the growth
of the Church, beginning in Jerusalem and spreading through Judea and Samaria
to the ends of the earth. This is the geographical structure of St Luke’s account.
In the Third Gospel Jerusalem was the destination point of Jesus’ public life (which
began in Galilee); here it is the departure point.

The Apostles’ mission extends to the whole world. Underlying this verse we can
see not so much a “geographical” dimension as the universalist aspirations of
the Old Testament, articulated by Isaiah: “It shall come to pass in the latter days
that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established as the highest of
the mountains, and shall be raised above the hills; and all the nations shall flow
to it, and many peoples shall come, and say: ‘Come, let us go up to the mountain
of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; that he may teach us his ways and
that we may walk in his paths. For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word
of the Lord from Jerusalem” (Is 2:2-3).

9. Jesus’ life on earth did not end with his death on the Cross but with his ascen-
sion into heaven. The ascension, reported here, is the last event, the last myste-
ry of our Lord’s life on earth (cf. also 24:50-53)—and also it concerns the origins of
the Church. The ascension scene takes place, so to speak, between heaven and
earth. “Why did a cloud take him out of the Apostles’ sight?”, St John Chrysostom
asks. “The cloud was a sure sign that Jesus had already entered heaven; it was
not a whirlwind or a chariot of fire, as in the case of the prophet Elijah (cf. 2 Kings
2:11), but a cloud, which was a symbol of heaven itself” (”Hom. on Acts”, 2). A
cloud features in theophanies—manifestations of God—in both the Old Testament
(cf. Ex 13:22) and the New (cf. Lk 9:34f).

Our Lord’s ascension is one of the actions by which Jesus redeems us from sin
and gives us the new life of grace. It is a redemptive mystery “What we have al-
ready taught of the mystery of his death and resurrection the faithful should deem
not less true of his ascension. For although we owe our redemption and salvation
to the passion of Christ, whose merits opened heaven to the just, yet his ascen-
sion is not only proposed to us as a model, which teaches us to look on high
and ascend in spirit into heaven, but it also imparts to us a divine virtue which
enables us to accomplish what it teaches” (”St Pius V Catechism” I, 7, 9).

Our Lord’s going up into heaven is not simply something which stirs us to lift up
our hearts—as we are invited to do at the preface of the Mass, to seek and love
the “things that are above” (cf. Col 3:1-2); along with the other mysteries of his
life, death and resurrection, Christ’s ascension saves us. “Today we are not only
made possessors of paradise”, St Leo says, “but we have ascended with Christ,
mystically but really, into the highest heaven, and through Christ we have ob-
tained a more ineffable grace than that which we lost through the devil’s envy”
(”First Homily on the Ascension”).

The ascension is the climax of Christ’s exaltation, which was achieved in the first
instance by his resurrection and which—along with his passion and death—const-
itutes the paschal mystery. The Second Vatican Council expresses this as fol-
lows: “Christ our Lord redeemed mankind and gave perfect glory to God [...]
principally by the paschal mystery of his blessed passion, resurrection from the
dead, and glorious ascension” (”Sacrosanctum Concilium”, 5; cf. “Dei Verbum”,
19).

Theology has suggested reasons why it was very appropriate for the glorified Lord
to go up into heaven to be “seated at the right hand of the Father.” “First of all, he
ascended because the glorious kingdom of the highest heavens, not the obscure
abode of this earth, presented a suitable dwelling place for him whose body, rising
from the tomb, was clothed with the glory of immortality. He ascended, however,
not only to possess the throne of glory and the kingdom which he had merited by
his blood, but also to attend to whatever regards our salvation. Again, he ascen-
ded to prove thereby that his kingdom is not of this world” (”St Pius V Catechism”,
I, 7, 5; cf. “Summa Theologiae”, III, q. 57, a. 6).

The ascension marks the point when the celestial world celebrates the victory
and glorification of Christ: “It is fitting that the sacred humanity of Christ should
receive the homage, praise and adoration of all the hierarchies of the Angels and
of all the legions of the blessed in heaven” (St. J. Escriva, “Holy Rosary”, second
glorious mystery).

11. The angels are referring to the Parousia—our Lord’s second coming, when he
will judge the living and the dead. “They said to them, What are you doing here,
looking into heaven? These words are full of solicitude, but they do not proclaim
the second coming of the Savior as imminent. The angels simply assert what is
most important, that is, that Jesus Christ will come again and the confidence
with which we should await his return” (St John Chrysostom, “Hom. on Acts”,
2).

We know for a certainty that Christ will come again at the end of time. We con-
fess this in the Creed as part of our faith. However, we know “neither the day nor
the hour” (Mt 25:13) of his coming. We do not need to know it. Christ is always
imminent. We must always be on the watch, that is, we should busy ourselves
in the service of God and of others, which is where our sanctification lies.

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


4 posted on 05/16/2012 10:42:17 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

From: Ephesians 1:17-23

Thanksgiving. The Supremacy of Christ (Continuation)


[17] that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, give you a spirit
of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, [18] having the eyes of your
hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called
you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, [19] and what
is the immeasurable greatness of his power in us who believe, according to the
working of his great might [20] which he accomplished in Christ when he raised
him from the dead and made him sit at the right hand in the heavenly places, [21]
far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name
that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come; [22] and he
has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for
the church, [23] which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

17. The God whom St Paul addresses is “the God of our Lord Jesus Christ”, that
is, the God who has revealed himself through Christ and to whom Jesus himself,
as man, prays and asks for help (cf. Lk 22:42). The same God as was described
in the Old Testament as “the God of Abraham, of Isaac and of Jacob” is now de-
fined as “the God of our Lord Jesus Christ”. He is the personal God recognized
by his relationship with Christ, his Son, who as mediator of the New Covenant ob-
tains from God the Father everything he asks for. This will be our own experience
too if we are united to Christ, for he promised that “if you ask anything of the
Father, he will give it to you in my name” (Jn 16:23; 15:16).

The founder of Opus Dei reminds us that “Jesus is the way, the mediator. In him
are all things; outside of him is nothing. In Christ, taught by him, we dare to call
Almighty God ‘our Father’: he who created heaven and earth is a loving Father”
(”Christ Is Passing By”, 91).

The Apostle also calls God “the Father of glory”. The glory of God means his
greatness, his power, the infinite richness of his personality, which when it is re-
vealed inspires man with awe. Already, in the history of Israel, God revealed him-
self through his saving actions in favor of his people. Asking God to glorify his
name is the same as asking him to show himself as our Savior and to give us his
gifts. But the greatest manifestation of God’s glory, of his power, was the raising
of Jesus from the dead, and the raising, with him, of the Christian (cf. Rom 6:4;
1 Cor 6:14). In this passage St Paul asks God “the Father of glory” to grant Chris-
tians supernatural wisdom to recognize the greatness of the blessings he has gi-
ven them through his Son; that is, to acknowledge that he is their Father and the
origin of glory. By asking for a “spirit of wisdom and revelation” the Apostle is see-
king special gifts—on the one hand, wisdom, that gift of the Holy Spirit which ena-
bles one to penetrate the mystery of God: “Who has learned thy counsel, unless
thou hast given wisdom and sent thy holy Spirit from on high?” (Wis 9:17). This
wisdom which the Church has been given (cf. Eph 1:8) can be communicated to
Christians in a special way, as a special gift or charism of the Holy Spirit. The A-
postle also asks God to give them a spirit “of revelation”, that is, the grace of per-
sonal revelations, such as he himself (cf. 1 Cor 14:6) and other Christians (cf. 1
Cor 14:26) received. It is not a matter of revelation or recognition of new truths,
but rather of special light from the Holy Spirit so as to have a deeper appreciation
of the truth of faith, or of the will of God in a particular situation.

18-19. Along with this deeper knowledge of God, St Paul asks that Christians be
given a fuller and livelier hope, because God and hope are inseparable. He recog-
nizes the faith and charity of the faithful to whom he is writing (cf. 1:15); now he
wants hope to shine more brightly for them; he wants God to enlighten their
minds and make them realize the consequences of their election, their calling, to
be members of the holy people of God, the Church. Hope, therefore, is a gift from
God. “Hope is a supernatural virtue, infused by God into our soul, by which we de-
sire and expect eternal life, promised by God to his servants, and the mean ne-
cessary to obtain it” (”St Pius X Catechism”, 893).

The ground for hope lies in God’s love and power which have been manifested in
the resurrection of Christ. This same power is at work in the Christian. Because
God’s plan for our salvation is an eternal one, he who has called us will lead us
to an immortal life in heaven. The fact that God’s power is at work in us (cf. Rom
5:5) does not mean that we encounter no difficulties. St. Escriva reminds us that
“as we fight this battle, which will last until the day we die, we cannot exclude
the possibility that enemies both within and without may attack with violent force.
As if that were not enough, you may at times be assailed by the memory of your
own past errors, which may have been very many. I tell you now, in God’s name:
do not despair. Should this happen (it need not happen; nor will it usually happen),
then turn it into another motive for uniting yourself more closely to the Lord, for he
has chosen you as his child and he will not abandon you. He has allowed this
trial to befall you so as to have you love him the more and discover even more
clearly his constant protection and love” (”Friends of God”, 214).

20-21. The Apostle is in awe at the marvels which God’s power has worked in
Jesus Christ. He sees Christ as the source and model of our hope. “For, just as
Christ’s life is the model and exemplar of our holiness, so is the glory and exal-
tation of Christ the form and exemplar of our glory and exaltation” (St Thomas
Aquinas, “Commentary on Eph, ad. Ioc”.).

As elsewhere in the New Testament (cf. Acts 7:56; Heb 1:3; 1 Pet 3:22), the fact
that the risen Christ is seated “at the right hand” of the Father means that he
shares in God’s kingly authority. The Apostle is using a comparison with which
people of his time were very familiar — that of the emperor seated on his throne.
The throne has always been the symbol of supreme authority and power. Thus,
the “St Pius V Catechism” explains that being seated at the right hand “does not
imply position or posture of body, but expresses the firm and permanent posses-
sion of royal and supreme power and glory, which he received from the Father”
(I, 7, 3).

Christ’s pre-eminence is absolute: he is Lord of all creation, material as well as
spiritual, earthly as well as heavenly. “All rule and authority and power and do-
minion”: this refers to the angelic spirits (cf. note on Eph 3:10), whom the false
preachers were presenting as superior to Christ. St Paul argues against them:
Jesus Christ at his resurrection was raised by God above all created beings.

22-23. In previous letters St Paul described the Church as a body (cf. Rom 12:
4f; 1 Cor 12:12ff). Here, and in Colossians 1:18, he pursues this comparison and
says that it is the body of Christ, and that Christ is its head. He returns to this
teaching elsewhere in the Captivity Epistles (cf. Col 1:18; Eph 5:23f). The image
of body and head highlights the life-giving and salvific influence of Christ on the
Church, and at the same time emphasizes his supremacy over the Church (cf.
St. Thomas Aquinas, “Commentary on Eph, ad loc.”, and also the note on Col
1:18). This fact fills Christians with joy: by joining the Church through Baptism,
they have become truly members of our Lord’s body. “No, it is not pride”, Paul
VI says, “ nor arrogance nor obstinacy nor stupidity nor folly that makes us so
sure of being living, genuine members of Christ’s body, the authentic heirs of
his Gospel” (”Ecclesiam Suam”, 33).

This image also reveals Christ’s close union with his Church and his deep love
for her: “he loved her so much”, St John of Avila observes, “that although what
normally happens is that a person raises his arm to take a blow and protect his
head, this blessed Lord, who is the head, put himself forward to receive the blow
of divine justice, and died on the Cross to give life to his body, that is, us. And
after giving us life, through penance and the sacraments, he endows us, defends
and keeps us as something so very much his own, that he is not content with
calling us his servants, friends, brethren or children: the better to show his love
and render us honor, he gives us his name. For, by means of this ineffable union
of Christ the head with the Church his body, he and we are together called ‘Christ”’
(”Audi, Filia”, chap. 84).

The Apostle also describes the Church, the body of Christ (cf. 1 Cor 12:12) as
his “fullness” (cf. note on Col 1:19). What he means is that, through the Church,
Christ becomes present in and fills the entire universe and extends to it the fruits
of his redemptive activity. By being the vehicle which Christ uses to distribute his
grace to all, the Church is different from the Israel of the Old Testament: it is not
confined to a particular geographical location.

Because the Church has limitless grace, its call is addressed to all mankind: all
men are invited to attain salvation in Christ. “For many centuries now, the Church
has been spread throughout the world,” St. Escriva comments, “and it numbers
persons of all races and walks of life. But the universality of the Church does not
depend on its geographical extension, even though that is a visible sign and a mo-
tive of credibility. The Church was catholic already at Pentecost; it was born ca-
tholic from the wounded heart of Jesus, as a fire which the Holy Spirit enkindles
[...]. ‘We call it catholic’, writes St Cyril, ‘not only because it is spread throughout
the whole world, from one extreme to the other, but because in a universal way
and without defect it teaches all the dogmas which men ought to know, of both
the visible and the invisible, the celestial and the earthly. Likewise, because it
draws to true worship all types of men, those who govern and those who are ruled,
the learned and the ignorant. And finally, because it cures and makes healthy all
kinds of sins, whether of the soul or of the body, possessing in addition—by what-
ever name it may be called—all the forms of virtue, in deeds and in words and in
every kind of spiritual gift’ (”Catechesis”, 18, 23)” (”In Love with the Church”, 9).

All grace reaches the Church through Christ. The Second Vatican Council reminds
us: “He continually endows his body, that is, the Church, with gifts of ministries
through which, by his power, we serve each other unto salvation so that, carrying
out the truth in love, we may through all things grow into him who is our head”
(”Lumen Gentium”, 7). This is why St Paul calls the Church the “body” of Christ;
and it is in this sense that it is the “fullness” (”pleroma”) of Christ—not because it
in any way fills out or completes Christ but because it is filled with Christ, full of
Christ, forming a single body with him, a single spiritual organism, whose unifying
and life-giving principle is Christ, its head. This demonstrates Christ’s absolute su-
premacy; his unifying and life-giving influence extends from God to Christ, from
Christ to the Church, and from the Church to all men. It is he in fact who fills all
in all (cf. Eph 4:10; Col 1:17-19; 2:9f).

The fact that the Church is the body of Christ is a further reason why we should
love it and serve it. As Pope Pius XII wrote: “To ensure that this genuine and
whole-hearted love will reign in our hearts and grow every day, we must accustom
ourselves to see Christ himself in the Church. For it is indeed Christ who lives in
the Church, and through her teaches, governs and sanctifies; and it is also Christ
who manifests himself in manifold disguise in the various members of his society”
(”Mystici Corporis”, 43).

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


5 posted on 05/16/2012 10:43:39 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

From: Ephesians 4:1-13 (or 1-7, 11-13)

A Call to Unity


[1] I therefore, a prisoner of the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling
to which you have been called, [2] with all lowliness and meekness, with pa-
tience, forbearing one another in love, [3] eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit
in the bond of peace. [4] There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were
called to the one hope that belongs to your call, [5] one Lord, one faith, one bap-
tism, [6] one God and Father of us all, who is above all and through all and in all.
[7] But grace was given to each of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift.
[8] Therefore it is said,
“When he ascended on high he led a
host of captives,
and he gave gifts to men.”
[9] (In saying, “He ascended,” what does it mean but that he had also descended
into the lower parts of the earth? 10 He who descended is he who also ascended
far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things.) [11] And his gifts were that
some should be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and
teachers, [12] for the equipment of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for buil-
ding up the body of Christ, [13] until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of
the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the sta-
ture of the fullness of Christ.

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

1-16. The second part of the letter points out certain practical consequences of
the teaching given earlier. The underlying theme of the previous chapters was the
revelation of the “mystery” of Christ — the calling of all men, Gentiles and Jews,
to form a single people, the Church. The second part of the letter begins with an
appeal to maintain the unity of the Church in the face of factors making for division
— internal discord (vv. 1-3), misuse of the different gifts or charisms with which
Christ endows individuals (v. 7), and the danger of being led astray by heretical
ideas (v. 14). Against this, St Paul teaches that the Church’s unity is grounded
on the oneness of God (vv. 4-6), and that Christ acts with full authority in the buil-
ding up of his body, through its various ministries (vv. 8-13) and through its mem-
bers’ solidarity (vv. 14-16).

1. The exhortation begins by stating a general principle: a Christian’s conduct
should be consistent with the calling he has received from God.

Enormous consequences flow from the fact of being called to form part of the
Church through Baptism: “Being members of a holy nation,” St. Escriva says,
“all the faithful have received a call to holiness, and they must strive to respond
to grace and to be personally holy [...]. Our Lord Jesus Christ, who founds the
holy Church, expects the members of this people to strive continually to acquire
holiness. Not all respond loyally to his call. And in the spouse of Christ there are
seen, at one and the same time, both the marvel of the way of salvation and the
shortcomings of those who take up that way” (”In Love with the Church”, 5-6).

Speaking about incorporation into the Church, which is the way of salvation, Va-
tican II exhorts Catholics to “remember that their exalted condition results, not
from their own merits, but from the grace of Christ. If they fail to respond in
thought, word and deed to that grace, not only shall they not be saved, but they
shall be the more severely judged (see Lk 12:48: ‘everyone to whom much is gi-
ven, of him will much be required’; cf. Mt 5:19-20; 7:21-22; 25:41-46; Jas 2:14)”
(”Lumen Gentium”, 14).

2-3. The virtues which the Apostle lists here are all different aspects of charity
which “binds everything together in perfect harmony” (Col 3:14) and is the mark
of the true disciple of Christ (cf. Jn 13:35). Charity originates not in man but in
God: “it is a supernatural virtue infused by God into our soul by which we love
God above everything else for his own sake, and our neighbor as ourselves for
love of God” (”St Pius X Catechism”, 898). In its decree on ecumenism the Se-
cond Vatican Council shows the perennial relevance of these words of St Paul:
“There can be no ecumenism worthy of the name without interior conversion.
For it is from interior renewal of mind (cf. Eph 4:23), from self-denial and unstin-
ted love, that desires of unity take their rise and develop in a mature way. We
should therefore pray to the Holy Spirit for the grace to be genuinely self-
denying, humble, gentle in the service of others and to have an attitude of bro-
therly generosity toward them” (”Unitatis Redintegratio”, 7).

Charity is basic to the building up of a peaceful human society. ‘The conscious-
ness of being trespassers against each other goes hand in hand with the call to
fraternal solidarity, which St Paul expressed in his concise exhortation to ‘forbear
one another in love’. What a lesson of humility is to be found here with regard to
man, with regard both to one’s neighbor and to oneself! What a school of good
will for daily living, in the various conditions of our existence!” (Bl. John Paul II,
“Dives In Misericordia”, 14).

The peace which unites Christians is the peace which Christ brings, or rather
it is Christ himself (cf. 2:14). By having the same faith and the same Spirit, “all
find themselves”, says St John Chrysostom, “brought together in the Church —
old and young, poor and rich, adult and child, husband and wife: people of either
sex and of every condition become one and the same, more closely united than
the parts of a single body, for the unity of souls is more intimate and more per-
fect than that of any natural substance. However, this unity is maintained only
by ‘the bond of peace’. It could not exist in the midst of disorder and enmity....
This is a bond which does not restrict us, which unites us closely to one another
and does not overwhelm us: it expands our heart and gives us greater joy than
we could ever have if we were unattached. He who is strong is linked to the wea-
ker one to carry him and prevent him from falling and collapsing. Does the weak
person feel weak?: the stronger person tries to build up his strength. ‘A brother
helped is like a strong city’, says the wise man (Prov 18: 19)” (”Hom. on Eph,
9, ad loc”.).

Union of hearts, affections and intentions is the result of the action of the Holy
Spirit in souls, and it makes for effectiveness and strength in apostolate.

“Do you see? One strand of wire entwined with another, many woven tightly to-
gether, form that cable strong enough to lift huge weights.

“You and your brothers, with wills united to carry out God’s will, can overcome
all obstacles” (St. J. Escriva, “The Way”, 480).

4-6. To show the importance of unity in the Church, and the theological basis of
that unity, St Paul quotes an acclamation which may well have been taken from
early Christian baptismal liturgy. It implies that the unity of the Church derives
from the unicity of the divine essence. The text also reflects the three persons
of the Blessed Trinity who are at work in the Church and who keep it together —
one Spirit, one Lord, one God and Father.

There is “only one” Holy Spirit, who brings about and maintains the unity of
Christ’s mystical body; and there is “only one” such body, the Church: “After
being lifted up on the cross and glorified, the Lord Jesus pours forth the Spirit
whom he had promised, and through whom he has called and gathered together
the people of the New Covenant, which is the Church, into a unity of faith, hope
and charity, as the Apostle teaches us (Eph 4:4-5; Gal 3:27-28) [...] It is the Ho-
ly Spirit, dwelling in believers and pervading and ruling over the entire Church,
who brings about that wonderful communion of the faithful and joins them toge-
ther so intimately in Christ, for he [the Spirit] is the principle of the Church’s uni-
ty” (Vatican II, “Unitatis Redintegratio”, 2). All — Gentiles as well as Jews — are
called to join this Church; all, therefore, share the one single hope — that of be-
ing saints which is implied in the vocation they have received.

Recognition of there being only one Lord, who is head of the mystical body, un-
derlines the unity that should obtain among all the many members of this single
body. All its members are solidly built on Christ when they confess “only one”
faith — the faith that he taught and which the Apostles and the Church have ex-
pressed in clear statements of doctrine and dogma. “There can be only one faith;
and so, if a person refuses to listen to the Church, he should be considered, so
the Lord commands, as a heathen and a publican (cf. Mt 18:17)” (Pius XII, “Mys-
tici Corporis”, 10). All Christians have also received only one Baptism, that is,
a Baptism by means of which, after making a profession of faith, they join the
other members of the Church as their equals. Since there is only “one Lord, one
faith, one baptism,” “there is a common dignity of members deriving from their
rebirth in Christ, a common grace as sons, a common vocation to perfection,
one salvation, one hope and undivided charity. In Christ and in the Church there
is, then, no inequality arising from race or nationality, social condition or sex,
for ‘there is neither Jew nor Greek; there is neither slave nor free; there is nei-
ther male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus’ (Gal 3:28; cf. Col 3:11)”
(Vatican II,”Lumen Gentium”, 32).

God, the Father of all, is, in the last analysis, the basis of the natural unity of
mankind. Pope Pius XII, after recalling that the sacred books tell us that all the
rest of mankind originated from the first man and woman, and how all the various
tribes and peoples grew up which are scattered throughout the world, exclaimed,
“This is a wonderful vision which allows us to reflect on the unity of mankind: all
mankind has a common origin in the Creator, as we are told, ‘one God and fa-
ther of us all’ (Eph 4:6); moreover, all men and women share one and the same
nature: all have a material body and an immortal and spiritual soul” (”Summi
Pontificatus”, 18). God is “above all”: his lordship and control over things means
that he is the author and maintainer of their unity. Throughout history he has
acted “through all” his children, that is, believers, whom he has used to bring
about unity among men and over all created things. And he dwells “in all” the
faithful, for they belong to him; even the deepest recesses of their hearts are
his.

7. The diversity of graces or charisms which accompany the various kinds of vo-
cation given to members of the Church do not undermine its unity; rather, they
enhance it, because it is Christ himself who bestows these gifts, as St Paul tea-
ches in vv. 8-10. Christ also provides the Church with ministers who devote them-
selves to building up his body (vv. 11-12).

So just as there is a great variety of personality and situation, the Church eviden-
ces many kinds of “charisms” or different ways of actually living out the calling to
holiness which God addresses to all. “In the Church”, Bl. John Paul II points out,
“as the community of the people of God under the guidance of the Holy Spirit’s
working, each member has ‘his own special gift’, as St Paul teaches (1 Cor 7:7).
Although this ‘gift’ is a personal vocation and a form of participation in the Church’s
saving work, it also serves others, builds the Church and the fraternal communi-
ties in the various spheres of human life on earth” (”Redemptor Hominis”, 21).

11-12. The Apostle here refers to certain ministries or offices in the Church,
which are performed not only in a charismatic way, under the influence of the Ho-
ly Spirit, but as an assignment or ministry entrusted to the particular individual by
the glorified Lord.

These ministries have to do with preaching (teaching) and government. In 1 Co-
rinthians 12:27-30 and Romans 12:6-8, mention is made, alongside ministries,
of other charisms which complete the array of the gifts to be found in the mysti-
cal body of Christ. St Paul here presents them as gifts given by Christ, the head
of his body, gifts which make for the strengthening of its unity and love. In this
connection, see the quotation from “Lumen Gentium”, 7, in the note on 1:22-23
above. These graces are provided by the Holy Spirit who, “distributing various
kinds of spiritual gifts and ministries (cf. 1 Cor 12:4-11), enriches the Church of
Jesus Christ with different functions in order to equip the saints for the works of
service (cf. Eph 4:12)” (”Unitatis Redintegratio”, 2).

In the list which St Paul gives the first to appear are apostles. These may be the
first apostles (including Paul himself) or a wider group (cf. 1 Cor 15:7; Rom 16:7)
which includes others sent as missionaries to establish new Christian communi-
ties. Alongside them (as in Eph 2:20; 3:5) come prophets, who are also the bed-
rock of the Church, trustees of revelation. Essentially a prophet was not someone
“sent” but rather one whose role was to “upbuild, encourage and console” (cf. 1
Cor 14:3; Acts 13:1) and who normally stayed within a particular community. The
“evangelists” were others, who had not received a direct revelation but who devo-
ted themselves to preaching the Gospel which the apostles had passed on to
them (cf. Acts 21:8; 2 Tim 4:5). It may be that St Paul mentions them here, a-
long with apostles and prophets, because it was evangelists who first preached
the Gospel in Ephesus. The last to be mentioned are pastors and teachers,
whose role was that of ruling and giving ongoing instruction to particular commu-
nities.

There is no necessary reason why the terminology used in apostolic times for
ministries in the Church should be the same as that used nowadays; however,
the ministries themselves do not change: “Guiding the Church in the way of all
truth (cf. Jn 16:13) and unifying her in communion and in the works of ministry,
the Holy Spirit bestows upon her varied hierarchic and charismatic gifts, and in
this way directs her; and he adorns her with his fruits (cf. Eph 4: 12; 1 Cor 12:4;
Gal 5:22)” (Vatican II, “Lumen Gentium”, 4).

And, of course, all Christians have a responsibility to spread Christ’s teaching,
to cooperate in the Church’s work of catechesis. “Catechesis always has been
and always will be”, Bl. John Paul II teaches, “a work for which the whole Church
must feel responsible and must wish to be responsible. But the Church’s mem-
bers have different responsibilities, derived from each one’s mission. Because of
their charge, pastors have, at differing levels, the chief responsibility for fostering,
guiding and coordinating catechesis [...]. Priests and religious have in cateche-
sis a preeminent field for their apostolate. On another level, parents have a
unique responsibility. Teachers, the various ministers of the Church, catechists,
and also organizers of social communications, all have in various degrees very
precise responsibilities in this education of the believing conscience, an educa-
tion that is important for the life of the Church and affects the life of society as
such” (”Catechesi Tradendae”, 16).

13. The building up of the body of Christ occurs to the extent that its members
strive to hold on to the truths of faith and to practice charity. The “knowledge of
the Son of God” refers not only to the object of faith — which is basically the ac-
ceptance of Christ as true God and true man — but also to a vital and loving re-
lationship with him. A conscientious approach to the personal obligations that
faith implies is the mark of maturity, whereas an undeveloped, childish persona-
lity is marked by a certain instability.

As Christians develop in faith and love, they become more firmly inserted into
the body of Christ and make a greater contribution to its development. In this way
“mature manhood” is reached: this seems to refer not to the individual Christian
but rather to the “total Christ” or “whole Christ” in St Augustine’s phrase, that is,
all the members in union with the head, Christ. “It is due to this communication
of the Spirit of Christ that all the gifts, virtues, and miraculous powers which are
found eminently, most abundantly, and fontally in the head, stream into all the
members of the Church and in them are perfected daily according to the place
of each in the mystical body of Jesus Christ; and that, consequently, the Church
becomes as it were the fullness and completion of the Redeemer, Christ in the
Church being in some sense brought to complete achievement” (Pius XII, “Mys-
tici Corporis”, 34).

“The fullness of Christ” must mean the Church itself or Christians incorporated
into Christ; the “fullness” (”pleroma”) of a boat is the sum total of the gear, crew
and cargo which “fill” the boat, and mean it is ready to weigh anchor. “As mem-
bers of the living Christ, incorporated into him and made like him by Baptism,
Confirmation and the Eucharist, all the faithful have an obligation to collaborate
in the spreading and growth of his body, so that they might bring it to fullness
as soon as possible” (Vatican II, “Ad Gentes”, 36).

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


6 posted on 05/16/2012 10:45:09 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

From: Mark 16:15-20

Jesus Appears to the Eleven. The Apostle’s Mission


[15] And He (Jesus) said to them (the Eleven), “Go into all the world and preach
the Gospel to the whole creation. [16] He who believes and is baptized will be
saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. [17] And these signs
will accompany those who believe; in My name they will cast out demons; they
will speak in new tongues; [18] they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any
deadly thing, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they
will recover.”

The Ascension


[19] So then the Lord Jesus, after He had spoken to them, was taken up into
Heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God.

The Apostles Go Forth and Preach


[20] And they went forth and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with
them and confirmed the message by the signs that attended it. Amen.

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

15. This verse contains what is called the “universal apostolic mandate” (paral-
leled by Matthew 28:19-20 and Luke 24:46-48). This is an imperative command
from Christ to His Apostles to preach the Gospel to the whole world. This same
apostolic mission applies, especially to the Apostles’ successors, the bishops
in communion with Peter’s successor, the Pope.

But this mission extends further: the whole “Church was founded to spread the
Kingdom of Christ over all the earth for the glory of God the Father, to make all
men partakers in redemption and salvation.... Every activity of the Mystical Body
with this in view goes by the name of ‘apostolate’; the Church exercises it through
all its members, though in various ways. In fact, the Christian vocation is, of its
nature, a vocation to the apostolate as well. In the organism of a living body no
member plays a purely passive part, sharing in the life of the body it shares at the
same time in its activity. The same is true for the body of Christ, the Church: ‘the
whole body achieves full growth in dependence on the full functioning of each part’
(Ephesians 4:16). Between the members of this body there exists, further, such
a unity and solidarity (cf. Ephesians 4:16) that a member who does not work at
the growth of the body to the extent of his possibilities must be considered use-
less both to the Church and to himself.

“In the Church there is diversity of ministry but unity of mission. To the apostles
and their successors Christ has entrusted the office of teaching, sanctifying and
governing in His name and by His power. But the laity are made to share in the
priestly, prophetical and kingly office of Christ; they have therefore, in the Church
and in the world, their own assignment in the mission of the whole people of God”
(Vatican II, “Apostolicam Actuositatem”, 2).

It is true that God acts directly on each person’s soul through grace, but it must
also be said that it is Christ’s will (expressed here and elsewhere) that men
should be an instrument or vehicle of salvation for others.

Vatican II also teaches this: “On all Christians, accordingly, rests the noble obli-
gation of working to bring all men throughout the whole world to hear and accept
the divine message of salvation” (”ibid.”, 3).

16. This verse teaches that, as a consequence of the proclamation of the Good
News, faith and Baptism are indispensable pre-requisites for attaining salvation.
Conversion to the faith of Jesus Christ should lead directly to Baptism, which
confers on us “the first sanctifying grace, by which Original Sin is forgiven, and
which also forgives any actual sins there may be; it remits all punishment due
for sins; it impresses on the soul the mark of the Christian; it makes us children
of God, members of the Church and heirs to Heaven, and enables us to receive
the other Sacraments” (”St. Pius X Catechism”, 553).

Baptism is absolutely necessary for salvation, as we can see from these words
of the Lord. But physical impossibility for receiving the rite of Baptism can be
replaced either by martyrdom (called, therefore, “baptism of blood”) or by a per-
fect act of love of God and of contrition, together with an at least implicit desire
to be baptized: this is called “baptism of desire” (cf. “ibid.”, 567-568).

Regarding infant Baptism, St. Augustine taught that “the custom of our Mother
the Church of infant Baptism is in no way to be rejected or considered unneces-
sary; on the contrary, it is to be believed on the ground that it is a tradition from
the Apostles” (”De Gen., Ad Litt.”, 10, 23, 39). The new “Code of Canon Law”
also stresses the need to baptize infants: “Parents are obliged to see that their
infants are baptized within the first few weeks. As soon as possible after the
birth, indeed even before it, they are to approach the parish priest to ask for the
Sacrament for their child, and to be themselves duly prepared for it” (Canon 867).

Another consequence of the proclamation of the Gospel, closely linked with the
previous one, is that “the Church is necessary”, as Vatican II declares: “Christ
is the one mediator and way of salvation; He is present to us in His body which
is the Church. He Himself explicitly asserted the necessity of faith and Baptism
(cf. Mark 16:16; John 3:5), and thereby affirmed at the same time the necessity
of the Church which men enter through Baptism as through a door. Hence they
could not be saved who, knowing that the Church was founded as necessary by
God through Christ, would refuse to enter it, or to remain in it” (”Lumen Gentium”,
14; cf. “Presbyterorum Ordinis”, 4; “Ad Gentes”, 1-3; “Dignitatis Humanae”, 11).

17-18. In the early days of the Church, public miracles of this kind happened
frequently. There are numerous historical records of these events in the New
Testament (cf., e.g., Acts 3:1-11; 28:3-6) and in other ancient Christian writings.
It was very fitting that this should be so, for it gave visible proof of the truth of
Christianity.

Miracles of this type still occur, but much more seldom; they are very exceptio-
nal. This, too, is fitting because, on the one hand, the truth of Christianity has
been attested to enough; and, on the other, it leaves room for us to merit through
faith. St. Jerome comments: “Miracles were necessary at the beginning to con-
firm the people in the faith. But, once the faith of the Church is confirmed, mira-
cles are not necessary” (”Comm. In Marcum, in loc.”). However, God still works
miracles through saints in every generation, including our own.

19. The Lord’s ascension into Heaven and His sitting at the right hand of the
Father is the sixth article of faith confessed in the Creed. Jesus Christ went up
into Heaven body and soul, to take possession of the Kingdom He won through
His death, to prepare for us a place in Heaven (cf. Revelation 3:21) and to send
the Holy Spirit to His Church (cf. “St. Pius X Catechism”, 123).

To say that He “sat at the right hand of God” means that Jesus Christ, including
His humanity, has taken eternal possession of Heaven and that, being the equal
of His Father in that He is God, He occupies the place of highest honor beside
Him in His human capacity (cf. “St. Pius V Catechism”, I, 7, 2-3). Already in the
Old Testament the Messiah is spoken of as seated at the right hand of the Al-
mighty, thereby showing the supreme dignity of Yahweh’s Anointed (cf. Psalm
110:1). The New Testament records this truth here and also in many other pas-
sages (cf. Ephesians 1:20-22; Hebrews 1:13).

As the “St. Pius V Catechism” adds, Jesus went up to Heaven by His own power
and not by any other. Nor was it only as God that He ascended, but also as man.

20. Inspired by the Holy Spirit, the evangelist attests that the words of Christ have
already begun to be fulfilled by the time of writing. The Apostles, in other words,
were faithfully carrying out the mission of our Lord entrusted to them. They begin
to preach the Good News of salvation throughout the known world. Their prea-
ching was accompanied by the signs and wonders the Lord had promised, which
lent authority to their witness and their teaching. Yet, we know that their apostolic
work was always hard, involving much effort, danger, misunderstanding, persecu-
tion and even martyrdom—like our Lord’s own life.

Thanks to God and also to the Apostles, the strength and joy of our Lord Jesus
Christ has reached as far as us. But every Christian generation, every man and
woman, has to receive the preaching of the Gospel and, in turn, pass it on. The
grace of God will always be available to us: “Non est abbreviata manus Domini”
(Isaiah 59:1), the power of the Lord has not diminished.

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


7 posted on 05/16/2012 10:46:43 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

From: Acts 18:1-8

Paul in Corinth, with Aquila and Priscilla


[1] After this he left Athens and went to Corinth. [2] And he found a Jew named
Aquila, a native of Pontus, lately come from Italy with his wife Priscilla because
Claudius had commanded all the Jews to leave Rome. And he went to see them;
[3] and because he was of the same trade he stayed with them, and they worked,
for by trade they were tentmakers. [4] And he argued in the synagogue every
sabbath, and persuaded Jews and Greeks.

Preaching to Jews and Gentiles


[5] When Silas and Timothy arrived from Macedonia, Paul was occupied with
preaching, testifying to the Jews that the Christ was Jesus. [6] And when they
opposed and reviled him, he shook out his garments and said to them, “Your
blood be upon your heads! I am innocent. From now on I will go to the Gentiles.”
[7] And he left there and went to the house of a man named Titius Justus, a wor-
shipper of God; his house was next door to the synagogue. [8] Crispus, the ruler
of the synagogue, believed in the Lord, together with all his household; and ma-
ny of the Corinthians hearing Paul believed and were baptized.

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

1-11. St Paul must have arrived in Corinth very discouraged by what happened in
Athens, and very short of money. Some time later he wrote: “And I was with you
in weakness and in much fear and trembling; and my speech and my message
were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and po-
wer, that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God
...” (1 Cor 2:3-4). He would never forget his experience in the Areopagus before
the Athenians, who “were friends of new speeches yet who paid no heed to them
or what they said; all they wanted was to have something new to talk about”
(Chrysostom, “Hom. on Acts”, 39).

Corinth was a very commercial, cosmopolitan city located on an isthmus be-
tween two gulfs (which are now joined). Ships came to Corinth from all over the
world. Low moral standards, concentration on money-making and voluptuous wor-
ship of Aphrodite meant that Corinth did not seem the best ground for sowing the
word of God; but the Lord can change people’s hearts, especially if he has people
as obedient and zealous as Paul, Silvanus, Timothy and the early Christians in
general. The Athenians’ intellectual pride proved to be a more formidable obstacle
than the Corinthians’ libertarian lifestyle.

Christians should not soft-pedal if they find themselves in situations where paga-
nism and loose living seem to be the order of the day: indeed this should only
spur them on. When addressing his Father at the Last Supper Jesus prayed: “I
do not pray that thou shouldst take them out of the world, but that thou shouldst
keep them from the evil one” (Jn 17:15).

2. This married couple were probably already Christians when they arrived in Co-
rinth. Since they came from Rome, the indications are that there was a commu-
nity of Christians in the capital from very early on. Aquila and Priscilla (the dimi-
nutive of Prisca) proved to be of great help to Paul from the very beginning of his
work in Corinth.

Later on they both must have returned to Rome (cf. Rom 16:3); and it may well
be that apostolic considerations dictated their movements, as would be the case
with countless Christians after them. “The Christian family’s faith and evangeli-
zing mission also possesses this Catholic missionary inspiration. The sacrament
of marriage takes up and reproposes the task of defending and spreading the faith,
a task which has its roots in Baptism and Confirmation and makes Christian mar-
ried couples and parents witnesses of Christ ‘to the ends of the earth’ (Acts 1:8)
[...].

“Just as at the dawn of Christianity Aquila and Priscilla were presented as a mis-
sionary couple (cf. Acts 18; Rom 16:3f), so today the Church shows forth her
perennial newness and fruitfulness by the presence of Christian couples who [...]
work in missionary territories, proclaiming the Gospel and doing service to their
fellowman for the love of Jesus Christ” (Bl. John Paul II, “Familiaris Consortio”,
54).

The edict of Claudius (41-54 A.D.) expelling the Jews from Rome was issued be-
fore the year 50. It is referred to by Suetonius, the Roman historian, but the de-
tails of the decree are not known. We do know that Claudius had protected the
Jews on a number of occasions. He gave them the right to appoint the high priest
and to have charge of the temple. Apparently, conflict between Jews and Chris-
tians in Rome led him to expel some Jews from the city, on a temporary basis,
or at least to advise them to leave.

3. St Paul earns his living and manages to combine this with all his preaching of
the Gospel. “This teaching of Christ on work,” Bl. John Paul II writes, “based on
the example of his life during his years in Nazareth, finds a particularly lively echo
in the teaching of the Apostle Paul. Paul boasts of working at his trade (he was
probably a tent-maker: cf. Acts 18:3), and thanks to that work he was able even
as an Apostle to earn his own bread” (”Laborem Exercens”, 26).

During this stay of a year and a half in Corinth St Paul wrote some rather severe
letters to the Thessalonians, pointing out to them the need to work: “If any one
will not work, let him not eat. [...] we command and exhort [idlers] in the Lord
Jesus Christ to do their work in quietness and to earn their own living” (2 Thess
3:10, 12). St John Chrysostom, commenting on this passage of Acts, says that
“Work is man’s natural state. Idleness is against his nature. God has placed
man in this world to work, and the natural thing for the soul is to be active and
not passive” (”Hom. on Acts”, 35).

Taking Christ’s own example, St. Escriva points out that “Work is one of the
highest human values and a way in which men contribute to the progress of
society. But even more, it is a way to holiness” (”Conversations”, 24). In Jesus’
hands, “a professional occupation, similar to that carried out by millions of peo-
ple in the world, was turned into a divine task. It became a part of our redemp-
tion, a way to salvation” (”ibid”., 55).

In fact, it is in work, in the middle of ordinary activity, that most people can and
should find Christ. God “is calling you to serve him in and from the ordinary, ma-
terial and secular activities of human life. He waits for us everyday [...] in all the
immense panorama of work” (”ibid”., 114). Man thereby finds God in the most
visible, material things, and Christians can avoid the danger of what might be
called “a double life: on one side, an interior life, a life of relation with God; and
on the other, a separate and distinct professional, social and family life, full of
small earthly realities” (”ibid”.).

Like most people Paul spent part of his day working to earn his living. When en-
gaged in work he was still the Apostle of the Gentiles chosen by God, and his
very work spoke to his companions and friends. We should not think that there
was any split between his on-going personal relationship with God, and his apos-
tolic activity or his work —or that he did not work in a concentrated or exemplary
manner.

4. It is easy to imagine the hope and eagerness Paul felt when preaching the Gos-
pel to his fellow Jews. He knew from experience the difficulties they had about re-
cognizing Jesus as the Messiah and accepting the Good News. Paul feels both
joy and sorrow: he is happy because the moment has arrived for the sons of Abra-
ham to receive the Gospel as is their right by inheritance; but he also realizes that
although it brings salvation to some, it spells rejection for those who refuse to
accept it.

Origen spoke in similar terms: “I experience anxiety to speak and anxiety not to
speak. I wish to speak for the benefit of those who are worthy, so that I may not
be taken to task for refusing the word of truth to those who have the ability to
grasp it. But I am afraid to speak in case I address those who are unworthy, be-
cause it means I am giving holy things to dogs and casting pearls before swine.
Only Jesus was capable of distinguishing, among his listeners, those who were
without from those who were within: he spoke in parables to the outsiders and
explained the parables to those who entered with him into the house” (”Dialogue
with Heraclides”, 15).

6. The blindness of the Jews once again causes Paul great sadness; here is fur-
ther evidence of the mysterious resistance to faith of so many of the chosen peo-
ple. As he did in Pisidian Antioch (cf. 13:51), the Apostle shakes the dust from
his clothes to show his break from the Jews of Corinth: their apparent fidelity to
the religion of their forefathers disguises their proud rejection of God’s promises.

He finds himself confronted by the great enigma of salvation history, in which
God dialogues with human freedom. As St Justin writes, “The Jews, in truth, who
had the prophecies and always looked for the coming of Christ, not only did not
recognize him, but, far beyond that, even mistreated him. But the Gentiles, who
had never even heard anything of Christ until his Apostles went from Jerusalem
and preached about him and gave them the prophecies, were filled with joy and
faith, and turned away from their idols, and dedicated themselves to the Unbegot-
ten God through Christ” (”First Apology”, 49, 5).

Paul’s words on this occasion are addressed to the Jews of Corinth, not to Jews
elsewhere. For a long time past he has directed his preaching to Gentiles as well
as Jews. The phrase “From now on I will go to the Gentiles” does not mean that
he will no longer address Jews, for in the course of his apostolic work he conti-
nues to evangelize Jews as well as Gentiles (cf. Acts 18:19; 28:17).

7. Titus Justus had a Roman name and was a Gentile, but the fact that he lived
next door to the synagogue and, in particular, the Greek term used to identify
him as a “worshipper” of God, indicates that he was a convert to Judaism. Cf.
note on Acts 2:5-11.

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


8 posted on 05/16/2012 10:49:00 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

From: John 16:16-20

Fullness of Joy


(Jesus said to His disciples,) [16] “A little while, and you will see Me no more;
again a little while, and you will see Me.” [17] Some of His disciples said to one
another, “What is this that He says to us, ‘A little while, and you will not see Me,
and again a little while, and you will see Me’; and, ‘because I go to the Father’?”
[18] They said, “What does He mean by ‘a little while’? We do not know what He
means.” [19] Jesus knew they wanted to ask Him; so He said to them, “Is this
what you are asking yourselves, what I meant by saying, ‘A little while and you
will not see Me, and again a little while, and you will see Me’? [20] Truly, truly,
I say to you, you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice; you will be sor-
rowful, but your sorrow will turn into joy.”

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

16-20. Earlier our Lord consoled the disciples by assuring them that He would
send them the Holy Spirit after He went away (verse 7). Now He gives them fur-
ther consolation: He is not leaving them permanently, He will come back to stay
with them. However, the Apostles fail to grasp what He means, and they ask
each other what they make of it. Our Lord does not give them a direct explana-
tion, perhaps because they would not understand what He meant (as happened
before: cf. Matthew 16:21-23 and paragraph). But He does emphasize that though
they are sad now they will soon be rejoicing: after suffering tribulation they will be
filled with a joy they will never lose (cf. John 17:13). This is a reference primarily
to the Resurrection (cf. Luke 24:41), but also to their definitive encounter with
Christ in Heaven.

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


9 posted on 05/16/2012 10:50:19 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Scripture readings taken from the Jerusalem Bible, published and copyright © 1966, 1967 and 1968 by Darton, Longman & Todd

Mass Readings

These readings are for the Vigil Mass on the evening before the feast:


First reading Acts 1:1-11 ©
In my earlier work, Theophilus, I dealt with everything Jesus had done and taught from the beginning until the day he gave his instructions to the apostles he had chosen through the Holy Spirit, and was taken up to heaven. He had shown himself alive to them after his Passion by many demonstrations: for forty days he had continued to appear to them and tell them about the kingdom of God. When he had been at table with them, he had told them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait there for what the Father had promised. ‘It is’ he had said ‘what you have heard me speak about: John baptised with water but you, not many days from now, will be baptised with the Holy Spirit.’
  Now having met together, they asked him, ‘Lord, has the time come? Are you going to restore the kingdom to Israel?’ He replied, ‘It is not for you to know times or dates that the Father has decided by his own authority, but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you, and then you will be my witnesses not only in Jerusalem but throughout Judaea and Samaria, and indeed to the ends of the earth.’
  As he said this he was lifted up while they looked on, and a cloud took him from their sight. They were still staring into the sky when suddenly two men in white were standing near them and they said, ‘Why are you men from Galilee standing here looking into the sky? Jesus who has been taken up from you into heaven, this same Jesus will come back in the same way as you have seen him go there.’

Psalm Psalm 46:2-3,6-9 ©
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!
All peoples, clap your hands,
  cry to God with shouts of joy!
For the Lord, the Most High, we must fear,
  great king over all the earth.
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!
God goes up with shouts of joy;
  the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
Sing praise for God, sing praise,
  sing praise to our king, sing praise.
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!
God is king of all the earth,
  sing praise with all your skill.
God is king over the nations;
  God reigns on his holy throne.
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!

Second reading Ephesians 4:1-13 ©
I, the prisoner in the Lord, implore you to lead a life worthy of your vocation. Bear with one another charitably, in complete selflessness, gentleness and patience. Do all you can to preserve the unity of the Spirit by the peace that binds you together. There is one Body, one Spirit, just as you were all called into one and the same hope when you were called. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God who is Father of all, over all, through all and within all.
  Each one of us, however, has been given his own share of grace, given as Christ allotted it. It was said that he would:
When he ascended to the height, he captured prisoners,
he gave gifts to men.
When it says, ‘he ascended’, what can it mean if not that he descended right down to the lower regions of the earth? The one who rose higher than all the heavens to fill all things is none other than the one who descended. And to some, his gift was that they should be apostles; to some, prophets; to some, evangelists; to some, pastors and teachers; so that the saints together make a unity in the work of service, building up the body of Christ. In this way we are all to come to unity in our faith and in our knowledge of the Son of God, until we become the perfect Man, fully mature with the fullness of Christ himself.

Second reading Ephesians 4:1-7,11-13 ©
I, the prisoner in the Lord, implore you to lead a life worthy of your vocation. Bear with one another charitably, in complete selflessness, gentleness and patience. Do all you can to preserve the unity of the Spirit by the peace that binds you together. There is one Body, one Spirit, just as you were all called into one and the same hope when you were called. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God who is Father of all, over all, through all and within all.
  Each one of us, however, has been given his own share of grace, given as Christ allotted it. To some, his gift was that they should be apostles; to some, prophets; to some, evangelists; to some, pastors and teachers; so that the saints together make a unity in the work of service, building up the body of Christ. In this way we are all to come to unity in our faith and in our knowledge of the Son of God, until we become the perfect Man, fully mature with the fullness of Christ himself.

Second reading Ephesians 1:17-23 ©
May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, give you a spirit of wisdom and perception of what is revealed, to bring you to full knowledge of him. May he enlighten the eyes of your mind so that you can see what hope his call holds for you, what rich glories he has promised the saints will inherit and how infinitely great is the power that he has exercised for us believers. This you can tell from the strength of his power at work in Christ, when he used it to raise him from the dead and to make him sit at his right hand, in heaven, far above every Sovereignty, Authority, Power, or Domination, or any other name that can be named not only in this age but also in the age to come. He has put all things under his feet and made him, as the ruler of everything, the head of the Church; which is his body, the fullness of him who fills the whole creation.


Gospel Mark 16:15-20 ©
Jesus showed himself to the Eleven, and said to them: ‘Go out to the whole world; proclaim the Good News to all creation. He who believes and is baptised will be saved; he who does not believe will be condemned. These are the signs that will be associated with believers: in my name they will cast out devils; they will have the gift of tongues; they will pick up snakes in their hands, and be unharmed should they drink deadly poison; they will lay their hands on the sick, who will recover.’
  And so the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven: there at the right hand of God he took his place, while they, going out, preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word by the signs that accompanied it.

First reading Acts 1:1-11 ©
In my earlier work, Theophilus, I dealt with everything Jesus had done and taught from the beginning until the day he gave his instructions to the apostles he had chosen through the Holy Spirit, and was taken up to heaven. He had shown himself alive to them after his Passion by many demonstrations: for forty days he had continued to appear to them and tell them about the kingdom of God. When he had been at table with them, he had told them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait there for what the Father had promised. ‘It is’ he had said ‘what you have heard me speak about: John baptised with water but you, not many days from now, will be baptised with the Holy Spirit.’
  Now having met together, they asked him, ‘Lord, has the time come? Are you going to restore the kingdom to Israel?’ He replied, ‘It is not for you to know times or dates that the Father has decided by his own authority, but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you, and then you will be my witnesses not only in Jerusalem but throughout Judaea and Samaria, and indeed to the ends of the earth.’
  As he said this he was lifted up while they looked on, and a cloud took him from their sight. They were still staring into the sky when suddenly two men in white were standing near them and they said, ‘Why are you men from Galilee standing here looking into the sky? Jesus who has been taken up from you into heaven, this same Jesus will come back in the same way as you have seen him go there.’

Psalm Psalm 46:2-3,6-9 ©
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!
All peoples, clap your hands,
  cry to God with shouts of joy!
For the Lord, the Most High, we must fear,
  great king over all the earth.
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!
God goes up with shouts of joy;
  the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
Sing praise for God, sing praise,
  sing praise to our king, sing praise.
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!
God is king of all the earth,
  sing praise with all your skill.
God is king over the nations;
  God reigns on his holy throne.
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!

Second reading Ephesians 4:1-13 ©
I, the prisoner in the Lord, implore you to lead a life worthy of your vocation. Bear with one another charitably, in complete selflessness, gentleness and patience. Do all you can to preserve the unity of the Spirit by the peace that binds you together. There is one Body, one Spirit, just as you were all called into one and the same hope when you were called. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God who is Father of all, over all, through all and within all.
  Each one of us, however, has been given his own share of grace, given as Christ allotted it. It was said that he would:
When he ascended to the height, he captured prisoners,
he gave gifts to men.
When it says, ‘he ascended’, what can it mean if not that he descended right down to the lower regions of the earth? The one who rose higher than all the heavens to fill all things is none other than the one who descended. And to some, his gift was that they should be apostles; to some, prophets; to some, evangelists; to some, pastors and teachers; so that the saints together make a unity in the work of service, building up the body of Christ. In this way we are all to come to unity in our faith and in our knowledge of the Son of God, until we become the perfect Man, fully mature with the fullness of Christ himself.

Second reading Ephesians 4:1-7,11-13 ©
I, the prisoner in the Lord, implore you to lead a life worthy of your vocation. Bear with one another charitably, in complete selflessness, gentleness and patience. Do all you can to preserve the unity of the Spirit by the peace that binds you together. There is one Body, one Spirit, just as you were all called into one and the same hope when you were called. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God who is Father of all, over all, through all and within all.
  Each one of us, however, has been given his own share of grace, given as Christ allotted it. To some, his gift was that they should be apostles; to some, prophets; to some, evangelists; to some, pastors and teachers; so that the saints together make a unity in the work of service, building up the body of Christ. In this way we are all to come to unity in our faith and in our knowledge of the Son of God, until we become the perfect Man, fully mature with the fullness of Christ himself.

Second reading Ephesians 1:17-23 ©
May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, give you a spirit of wisdom and perception of what is revealed, to bring you to full knowledge of him. May he enlighten the eyes of your mind so that you can see what hope his call holds for you, what rich glories he has promised the saints will inherit and how infinitely great is the power that he has exercised for us believers. This you can tell from the strength of his power at work in Christ, when he used it to raise him from the dead and to make him sit at his right hand, in heaven, far above every Sovereignty, Authority, Power, or Domination, or any other name that can be named not only in this age but also in the age to come. He has put all things under his feet and made him, as the ruler of everything, the head of the Church; which is his body, the fullness of him who fills the whole creation.


Gospel Acclamation Mt28:19,20
Alleluia, alleluia!
Go, make disciples of all the nations.
I am with you always; yes, to the end of time.
Alleluia!

Gospel Mark 16:15-20 ©
Jesus showed himself to the Eleven, and said to them: ‘Go out to the whole world; proclaim the Good News to all creation. He who believes and is baptised will be saved; he who does not believe will be condemned. These are the signs that will be associated with believers: in my name they will cast out devils; they will have the gift of tongues; they will pick up snakes in their hands, and be unharmed should they drink deadly poison; they will lay their hands on the sick, who will recover.’
  And so the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven: there at the right hand of God he took his place, while they, going out, preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word by the signs that accompanied it.

10 posted on 05/16/2012 10:55:14 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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April 11 Audience: On Easter's Spiritual Joy
When did the Resurrection become truly the Faith, and the official teaching of the Church?
What are they thinking? (The Easter and Christmas only Church-goers, that is!)

The Resurrection Appearances Chronologically Arranged
Are There Discrepancies in the Resurrection Accounts? If so, Can They be Resolved?
URBI ET ORBI MESSAGE OF HIS HOLINESS POPE BENEDICT XVI - EASTER 2012
Saint Gregory the Great’s Sermon on the Mystery of the Resurrection
Pope Benedict XVI warns of moral 'darkness' as he celebrates Easter Mass
Easter Changes Everything
New Catholics a sign of Easter blessing for church (in Oregon)
On Easter Joy -- General Audience, Pope Benedict XVI
The Christ of the Folded Napkin
Reflection on Hope and New Life After the Easter Feasts (Thomas Rosica, CSB)

Easter Time [Eastertide or Easter Season]
Risen Christ opens for a us a completely new future says the Pope at Easter Mass
Man Who "Died" 5 Times Is Becoming Catholic (Thousands to Enter Church at Easter)
On the Resurrection-Pope Benedict XVI
Octave of Easter, Pope Benedict XVI
The Double Alleluia
Easter Sunday
Eastertide Overview
Our 'Great Sunday' (Season of Easter) [Editorial Column]
Happy Easter: The Tomb is Empty! The Warrior of Love has conquered!

Homily Of His Holiness Benedict XVI (Holy Saturday Easter Vigil, Saint Peter's Basilica)
Pope to Baptize Prominent Muslim
Holy Saturday (Easter Vigil)
The Exultet
The Dark before Dawn
Easter and the Holy Eucharist(Catholic/Orthodox Caucus)
Holy Saturday and the Easter Vigil
Easter Day and Easter Season
THE EASTER LITURGY [Easter Vigil] (Anglican and Catholic Rites)

Holy Saturday and the Easter Vigil
Poles visit symbolic Christ's Graves on Holy Saturday
Easter Vigil tonight
HOMILIES PREACHED BY FATHER ALTIER FOR EASTER VIGIL FROM 2002-2005
2 Paschal Candles; Lights On at Vigil And More on Washing of the Feet
RCIA and Holy Saturday
The Time Of Easter or Eastertide -- Easter Seasosn
Easter Day and Easter Season
Easter Reflections -- 50 Days of the Easter Season
The Blessed Season of Easter - Fifty Days of Reflections

11 posted on 05/16/2012 11:05:02 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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PRAYERS AFTER
HOLY MASS AND COMMUNION



Leonine Prayers
    Following are the Prayers after Low Mass which were prescribed by Pope Leo XIII who composed the Prayer to Saint Michael the Archangel, and were reinforced by Pope Pius XI and Pope Pius XII to pray for the conversion of Russia. These prayers were in effect until after Vatican II. A decade later Paul VI said, "satan has entered the sanctuary." Could the elimination of these powerful prayers with a ten year indulgence have played a huge part in allowing the devil such easy access? The answer is obvious. Below the normal Leonine Prayers is the longer version of the Prayer to St. Michael, composed by His Excellency Pope Leo XIII to defend against The Great Apostasy.
Latin

Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum, benedicta tu in mulieribus et benedictus fructis ventris tui, Jesus. Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc et in hora mortis nostrae. Amen.
(Said 3 times)

    Salve Regina, Mater misericordiae, vita, dulcedo, et spes nostra, salve. Ad te clamamus, exsules filii Evae. Ad te suspiramus gementes et fientes in hac lacrymarum valle. Eia ergo, Advocata nostra, illos tuos misericordes oculos ad nos converte. Et Jesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui, nobis, post hoc exilium, ostende. O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Virgo Maria. Ora pro nobis, sancta Dei Genitrix. Ut digni efficiamur promissionibus Christi.

    Oremus. Deus, refugium nostrum et virtus, populum ad te clamantem propitius respice; et intercedente gloriosa, et immaculata Virgine Dei Genitrice Maria, cum beato Joseph, ejus Sponso, ac beatis Apostolis tuis Petro et Paulo, et omnibus Sanctis, quas pro conversione peccatorum, pro libertate et exaltatione sanctae Matris Ecclesiae, preces effundimus, misericors et benignus exaudi. Per eundum Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.

Sancte Michael Archangele, defende nos in proelio; contra nequitiam et insidias diaboli esto praesidium. Imperet illi Deus, supplices deprecamur: tuque, Princeps militiae Caelestis, satanam aliosque spiritus malignos, qui ad perditionem animarum pervagantur in mundo, divina virtute in infernum detrude. Amen.

Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.
Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.
Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.

Vernacular

   Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.
(Said 3 times)

   Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness, and our hope. To thee to we cry, poor banished children of Eve. To thee do we send up our sighs, mouring and weeping in this valley of tears. Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us, and after this exile, show unto us the blessed Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.

Pray for us, O holy Mother of God. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

   Let us pray.
O God, our refuge and our strength, look down with mercy upon the people who cry to Thee; and by the intercession of the glorious and immaculate Virgin Mary, Mother of God, of Saint Joseph her spouse, of the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and of all the saints, in Thy mercy and goodness hear our prayers for the conversion of sinners, and for the liberty and exaltation of the Holy Mother the Church. Through the same Christ Our Lord. Amen.

   Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle; be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray: and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, thrust into hell satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.


Complete Prayer to Saint Michael
    The following is the longer version of the vital prayer composed by Pope Leo XIII in 1888 after his startling vision as to the future of the Church. This prayer was dedicated for the Feast of St. Michael 1448 years from the date of the election of the first Leo - Pope Saint Leo the Great. Everyone is familiar with the first prayer below which was mandated by His Holiness as part of the Leonine Prayers after Low Mass. After Vatican II, in legion with the devil Giovanni Montini outlawed this necessary prayer and then one wonders how "the smoke of satan" got into the sanctuary? The conciliarists wanted to make sure the words in bold below would never see the light of day again for in it Leo foretold what would happen: The shepherd would be struck, the sheep scattered. Below are both the short and longer versions of this poignant prayer which should never be forgotten.

    Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him we humbly pray, and do thou, O heavenly hosts, by the power of God, thrust into hell satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world for the ruin of souls. Amen.

O glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Prince of the heavenly host, be our defense in the terrible warfare which we carry on against principalities and powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, spirits of evil. Come to the aid of man, whom God created immortal, made in His own image and likeness, and redeemed at a great price from the tyranny of the devil. Fight this day the battle of our Lord, together with the holy angels, as already thou hast fought the leader of the proud angels, Lucifer, and his apostate host, who were powerless to resist thee, nor was there place for them any longer in heaven. That cruel, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil or Satan who seduces the whole world, was cast into the abyss with his angels. Behold this primeval enemy and slayer of men has taken courage. Transformed into an angel of light, he wanders about with all the multitude of wicked spirits, invading the earth in order to blot out the Name of God and of His Christ, to seize upon, slay, and cast into eternal perdition, souls destined for the crown of eternal glory. That wicked dragon pours out. as a most impure flood, the venom of his malice on men of depraved mind and corrupt heart, the spirit of lying, of impiety, of blasphemy, and the pestilent breath of impurity, and of every vice and iniquity. These most crafty enemies have filled and inebriated with gall and bitterness the Church, the spouse of the Immaculate Lamb, and have laid impious hands on Her most sacred possessions. In the Holy Place itself, where has been set up the See of the most holy Peter and the Chair of Truth for the light of the world, they have raised the throne of their abominable impiety with the iniquitous design that when the Pastor has been struck the sheep may be scattered. Arise then, O invincible Prince, bring help against the attacks of the lost spirits to the people of God, and give them the victory. They venerate thee as their protector and patron; in thee holy Church glories as her defense against the malicious powers of hell; to thee has God entrusted the souls of men to be established in heavenly beatitude. Oh, pray to the God of peace that He may put Satan under our feet, so far conquered that he may no longer be able to hold men in captivity and harm the Church. Offer our prayers in the sight of the Most High, so that they may quickly conciliate the mercies of the Lord; and beating down the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, do thou again make him captive in the abyss, that he may no longer seduce the nations. Amen.

    V: Behold the Cross of the Lord; be scattered ye hostile powers.
    R: The Lion of the Tribe of Juda has conquered the root of David.
    V: Let Thy mercies be upon us, O Lord.
    R: As we have hoped in Thee.
    V: O Lord hear my prayer.
    R: And let my cry come unto Thee.

    V: Let us pray. O God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we call upon Thy holy Name, and as suppliants, we implore Thy clemency, that by the intercession of Mary, ever Virgin, immaculate and our Mother, and of the glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Thou wouldst deign to help us against Satan and all other unclean spirits, who wander about the world for the injury of the human race and the ruin of our souls. Amen.


Prayer Before the Crucifix

   Look down upon me, O good and gentle Jesus, while before Thy face I humbly kneel, and with burning soul pray and beseech Thee to fix deep in my heart lively sentiments of faith, hope and charity, true contrition for my sins, and a firm purpose of amendment; the while I contemplate with great love and tender pity Thy five most precious wounds, pondering over them within me, calling to mind the words which David Thy prophet said of Thee, my good Jesus: "They have pierced My hands and My feet; they have numbered all My bones."

Indulgence of ten years; a plenary indulgence if recited after devout reception of Holy Communion, Raccolta 201)

Anima Christi - Soul of Christ

Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, inebriate me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O Good Jesus, hear me.
Within Thy wounds, hide me.
Suffer me not to be separated from Thee.
From the malignant enemy, defend me.
In the hour of my death, call me.
And bid me come to Thee, that with
Thy saints I may praise Thee for ever and ever. Amen.

Indulgence of 300 days; if recited after devout reception of Holy Communion, seven years Raccolta 131)

Prayer for Vocations

   O Lord Jesus Christ, Who didst take to Thyself a body and soul like ours, to teach us the glory of self-sacrifice and service, mercifully deign to instill in other hearts the desire to dedicate their lives to Thee. Give us PRIESTS to stand before Thine Altar and to preach the words of Thy Gospel; BROTHERS to assist the priests and to reproduce in themselves Thy humility; SISTERS to teach the young and nurse the sick and to minister Thy charity to all; LAY PEOPLE to imitate Thee in their homes and families. Amen.


12 posted on 05/16/2012 11:07:21 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Prayers for The Religion Forum (Ecumenical)
13 posted on 05/16/2012 11:09:10 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Image Detail
 
Jesus, High Priest
 

We thank you, God our Father, for those who have responded to your call to priestly ministry.

Accept this prayer we offer on their behalf: Fill your priests with the sure knowledge of your love.

Open their hearts to the power and consolation of the Holy Spirit.

Lead them to new depths of union with your Son.

Increase in them profound faith in the Sacraments they celebrate as they nourish, strengthen and heal us.

Lord Jesus Christ, grant that these, your priests, may inspire us to strive for holiness by the power of their example, as men of prayer who ponder your word and follow your will.

O Mary, Mother of Christ and our mother, guard with your maternal care these chosen ones, so dear to the Heart of your Son.

Intercede for our priests, that offering the Sacrifice of your Son, they may be conformed more each day to the image of your Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Saint John Vianney, universal patron of priests, pray for us and our priests

This icon shows Jesus Christ, our eternal high priest.

The gold pelican over His heart represents self-sacrifice.

The border contains an altar and grapevines, representing the Mass, and icons of Melchizedek and St. Jean-Baptiste Vianney.

Melchizedek: king of righteousness (left icon) was priest and king of Jerusalem.  He blessed Abraham and has been considered an ideal priest-king.

St. Jean-Baptiste Vianney is the patron saint of parish priests.


14 posted on 05/16/2012 11:15:12 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Pray a Rosary each day for our nation.

Pray the Rosary

1.  Sign of the Cross:  In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

2.  The Apostles Creed:  I BELIEVE in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth. I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended to the dead. On the third day He rose again. He ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty. From thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

3.  The Lord's Prayer:  OUR Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

4. (3) Hail Mary:  HAIL Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now, and in the hour of our death. Amen. (Three times)

5. Glory Be:  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.

Fatima Prayer: Oh, my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to heaven, especially those in most need of your mercy.

Announce each mystery, then say 1 Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, 1 Glory Be and 1 Fatima prayer.  Repeat the process with each mystery.

End with the Hail Holy Queen:

Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope! To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve! To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this vale of tears! Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us; and after this, our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus!

O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary! Pray for us, O holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Final step -- The Sign of the Cross

 

The Mysteries of the Rosary

By tradition, Catholics meditate on these Mysteries during prayers of the Rosary.
The biblical references follow each of the Mysteries below.


The Luminous Mysteries or Mysteries of Light
(Thursdays) see Rosarium Virginis Mariae
1. Jesus' Baptism in the Jordan (II Corinthians 5:21, Matthew 3:17 and parallels) [Spiritual fruit - Gratitude for the gift of Faith]
2. Jesus' self-manifestation at the wedding of Cana (John 2:1- 12) [Spiritual fruit - Fidelity]
3. Jesus' proclamation of the Kingdom of God, with His call to conversion (Mark 1:15, Mark 2:3-13; Luke 7:47- 48, John 20:22-23) [Spiritual fruit - Desire for Holiness]
4. Jesus' Transfiguration (Luke 9:35 and parallels) [Spiritual fruit - Spiritual Courage]
5. Jesus' institution of the Eucharist, as the sacramental expression of the Paschal Mystery. (Luke 24:13-35 and parallels, 1 Corinthians 11:24-25) [Spiritual fruit - Love of our Eucharistic Lord]

15 posted on 05/16/2012 11:17:03 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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~ PRAYER ~

St. Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle
 Be our protection against the wickedness
and snares of the devil;
May God rebuke him, we  humbly pray,
 and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host,
 by the power of God,
 Cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits
who prowl through the world seeking the ruin of souls.
 Amen
+

16 posted on 05/16/2012 11:19:28 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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A Prayer for our Free Nation Under God
God Save Our Country web site (prayer warriors)
Prayer Chain Request for the United States of America
Pray for Nancy Pelosi
Prayer and fasting will help defeat health care reform (Freeper Prayer Thread)
Prayer Campaign Started to Convert Pro-Abortion Catholic Politicians to Pro-Life
[Catholic Caucus] One Million Rosaries
Non-stop Rosary vigil to defeat ObamaCare

From an Obama bumper sticker on a car:

"Pray for Obama.  Psalm 109:8"

   

PLEASE JOIN US -

Evening Prayer
Someone has said that if people really understood the full extent of the power we have available through prayer, we might be speechless.
Did you know that during WWII there was an advisor to Churchill who organized a group of people who dropped what they were doing every day at a prescribed hour for one minute to collectively pray for the safety of England, its people and peace?  


There is now a group of people organizing the same thing here in America. If you would like to participate: Every evening at 9:00 PM Eastern Time (8:00 PM Central) (7:00 PM Mountain) (6:00 PM Pacific), stop whatever you are doing and spend one minute praying for the safety of the United States, our troops, our citizens, and for a return to a Godly nation. If you know anyone else who would like to participate, please pass this along. Our prayers are the most powerful asset we have.    Please forward this to your praying friends.


17 posted on 05/16/2012 11:21:22 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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May Devotion: Blessed Virgin Mary
The Virgin Mary as Our Lady of Grace

Since the 16th century Catholic piety has assigned entire months to special devotions. Toward the end of the eighteenth century a zealous Jesuit priest, Father Lalomia, started among the students of the Roman college of his Society the practice of dedicating May to Our Lady. The devotion, which others had promoted in a small way, soon spread to other Jesuit Colleges and to the entire Latin church and since that time it has been a regular feature of Catholic life.

INVOCATIONS

Thou who wast a virgin before thy delivery, pray for us. Hail Mary, etc.
Thou who wast a virgin in thy delivery, pray for us. Hail Mary, etc.
Thou who wast a virgin after thy delivery, pray for us. Hail Mary, etc.

My Mother, deliver me from mortal sin.
Hail Mary (three times).

Mother of love, of sorrow and of mercy, pray for us.

Remember, O Virgin Mother of God, when thou shalt stand before the face of the Lord, that thou speak favorable things in our behalf and that He may turn away His indignation from us.
Roman Missal

Thou art my Mother, O Virgin Mary: keep me safe lest I ever offend thy dear Son, and obtain for me the grace to please Him always and in all things.

FOR THE HELP OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

May we be assisted, we beseech Thee, 0 Lord, by the worshipful intercession of Thy glorious Mother, the ever-Virgin Mary; that we, who have been enriched by her perpetual blessings, may be delivered from all dangers, and through her loving kindness made to be of one heart and mind: who livest and reignest world without end. Amen.
Roman Missal

THE SALVE REGINA

Hail, holy Queen, Mother of mercy, hail, our life, our sweetness, and our hope! To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve! To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this vale of tears! Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us; and after this, our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus! O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary!
Roman Breviary

PRAYER TO THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

O blessed Virgin Mary, who can worthily repay thee thy just dues of praise and thanksgiving, thou who by the wondrous assent of thy will didst rescue a fallen world? What songs of praise can our weak human nature recite in thy honor, since it is by thy intervention alone that it has found
the way to restoration? Accept, then, such poor thanks as we have here to offer, though they be unequal to thy merits; and, receiving our vows, obtain by thy prayers the remission of our offenses. Carry thou our prayers within the sanctuary of the heavenly audience, and bring forth from it the antidote of our reconciliation. May the sins we bring before Almighty God through thee, become pardonable through thee; may what we ask for with sure confidence, through thee be granted. Take our offering, grant us our requests, obtain pardon for what we fear, for thou art the sole hope of sinners. Through thee we hope for the remission of our sins, and in thee, 0 blessed Lady, is our hope of reward. Holy Mary, succour the miserable, help the fainthearted, comfort the sorrowful, pray for thy people, plead for the clergy, intercede for all women consecrated to God; may all who keep thy holy commemoration feel now thy help and protection. Be thou ever ready to assist us when we pray, and bring back to us the answers to our prayers. Make it thy continual care to pray for the people of God, thou who, blessed by God, didst merit to bear the Redeemer of the world, who liveth and reigneth, world without end. Amen.
Saint Augustine

PETITION TO MARY

Most holy Virgin Immaculate, my Mother Mary, to thee who art the Mother of my Lord, the queen of the universe, the advocate, the hope, the refuge of sinners, I who am the most miserable of all sinners, have recourse this day. I venerate thee, great queen, and I thank thee for the many graces thou hast bestowed upon me even unto this day; in particular for having delivered me from the hell which I have so often deserved by my sins. I love thee, most dear Lady; and for the love I bear thee, I promise to serve thee willingly for ever and to do what I can to make thee loved by others also. I place in thee all my hopes for salvation; accept me as thy servant and shelter me under thy mantle, thou who art the Mother of mercy. And since thou art so powerful with God, deliver me from all temptations, or at least obtain for me the strength to overcome them until death. From thee I implore a true love for Jesus Christ. Through thee I hope to die a holy death. My dear Mother, by the love thou bearest to Almighty God, I pray thee to assist me always, but most of all at the last moment of my life. Forsake me not then, until thou shalt see me safe in heaven, there to bless thee and sing of thy mercies through all eternity. Such is my hope. Amen.
Saint Alphonsus Liguori

Blessed Virgin Mary Magnificat Prayer
My being proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit finds joy in God my savior,
For he has looked upon his servant in her lowliness; all ages to come shall call me blessed.
God who is mighty has done great things for me,
holy is his name; His mercy is from age to age on those who fear him. He has shown might with his arm; he has confused the proud in their inmost thoughts. He has deposed the mighty from their thrones and raised the lowly to high places. The hungry he has given every good thing, while the rich he has sent empty away. He has upheld Israel his servant, ever mindful of his mercy; Even as he promised our fathers, promised Abraham and his descendants forever.
(Lk 1:46-55) 

Seen above is the Blessed Virgin Mary, portrayed as Our Lady of Perpetual Help.
It was she who was chosen by God, to provide His Son with His Sacred Humanity.
She did so in humble and total cooperation with the Holy Spirit and the Divine will of the Holy Trinity; providing God's Son with the Blood He shed for us on the Cross.

TO MARY, REFUGE OF SINNERS
Hail, most gracious Mother of mercy, hail, Mary, for whom we fondly yearn, through whom we obtain forgiveness! Who would not love thee? Thou art our light in uncertainty, our comfort in sorrow, our solace in the time of trial, our refuge from every peril and temptation. Thou art our sure hope of salvation, second only to thy only-begotten Son; blessed are they who love thee, our Lady! Incline, I beseech thee, thy ears of pity to the entreaties of this thy servant, a miserable sinner; dissipate the darkness of my sins by the bright beams of thy holiness, in order that I may be acceptable in thy sight.

FOR THE GRACE OF LOVE
O Mary, my dear Mother, how much I love thee! And yet in reality how little! Thou dost teach me what I ought to know, for thou teachest me what Jesus is to me and what I ought to be for Jesus. Dearly beloved Mother, how close to God thou art, and how utterly filled with Him! In the measure that we know God, we remind ourselves of thee. Mother of God, obtain for me the grace of loving my Jesus; obtain for me the grace of loving thee!
Cardinal Merry del Val

TO THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY FOR MAY

O most august and blessed Virgin Mary! Holy Mother of God! glorious Queen of heaven and earth! powerful protectress of those who love thee, and unfailing advocate of all who invoke thee! look down, I beseech thee, from thy throne of glory on thy devoted child; accept the solemn offering I present thee of this month, specially dedicated to thee, and receive my ardent, humble desire, that by my love and fervor I could worthily honor thee, who, next to God, art deserving of all honor. Receive me, 0 Mother of Mercy, among thy best beloved children; extend to me thy maternal tenderness and solicitude; obtain for me a place in the Heart of Jesus, and a special share in the gifts of His grace. 0 deign, I beseech thee, to recognize my claims on thy protection, to watch over my spiritual and temporal interests, as well as those of all who are dear to me; to infuse into my soul the spirit of Christ, and to teach me thyself to become meek, humble, charitable, patient, and submissive to the will of God.

May my heart bum with the love of thy Divine Son, and of thee, His blessed Mother, not for a month alone, but for time and eternity; may I thirst for the promotion of His honor and thine, and contribute, as far as I can, to its extension. Receive me, 0 Mary, the refuge of sinners! Grant me a Mother's blessing and a Mother's care, now, and at the hour of my death. Amen.

TO OUR LADY

Saint John Vianney, better known as the Cure of Ars, when asked how long he had loved Mary, said: "I loved her almost before I could know her." In this prayer he expresses that love.
O thou most holy virgin Mary, who dost evermore stand before the most holy Trinity, and to whom it is granted at all times to pray for us to thy most beloved Son; pray for me in all my necessities; help me, combat for me, and obtain for me the pardon of all my sins. Help me especially at my last hour; and when I can no longer give any sign of the use of reason, then do thou encourage me, make the sign of the cross for me, and fight for me against the enemy. Make in my name a profession of faith; favor me with a testimony of my salvation, and never let me despair of the mercy of God. Help me to overthrow the wicked enemy. When I can no longer say: "Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, I place my soul in your hands," do thou say it for me; when I can no longer hear human words of consolation, do thou comfort me. Leave me not before I have been judged; and if I have to expiate my sins in purgatory, oh! pray for me earnestly; and admonish my friends to procure for me a speedy enjoyment of the blessed sight of God. Lessen my sufferings, deliver me speedily, and lead my soul into heaven with thee: that, united with all the elect, I may there bless and praise my God and thee for all eternity. Amen.
Saint John Vianney

ACT OF REPARATION

O blessed Virgin, Mother of God, look down in mercy from heaven, where thou art enthroned as Queen, upon me, a miserable sinner, thine unworthy servant. Although I know full well my own unworthiness, yet in order to atone for the offenses that are done to thee by impious and blasphemous
tongues, from the depths of my heart I praise and extol thee as the purest, the fairest, the holiest creature of all God's handiwork. I bless thy holy name, I praise thine exalted privilege of being truly Mother of God, ever virgin, conceived without stain of sin, co-redemptrix of the human race. I bless the Eternal Father who chose thee in an especial way for His daughter; I bless the Word Incarnate who took upon Himself our nature in thy bosom and so made thee His Mother; I bless the Holy Spirit who took thee as His bride. All honor, praise and thanksgiving to the ever-blessed Trinity, who predestined thee and loved thee so exceedingly from all eternity as to exalt thee above all creatures to the most sublime heights. 0 Virgin, holy and merciful, obtain for all who offend thee the grace of repentance, and graciously accept this poor act of homage from me thy servant, obtaining likewise for me from thy divine Son the pardon and remission of all my sins. Amen.

Prayer Source: Prayer Book, The by Reverend John P. O'Connell, M.A., S.T.D. and Jex Martin, M.A., The Catholic Press, Inc., Chicago, Illinois, 1954

Memorare of the Blessed Virgin Mary

 

Image Detail

Remember O Most Gracious Virgin Mary! 

That never was it known
That anyone who fled to thy protection,
Implored thy help or sought thy intercession
Was left unaided. 

Inspired by this confidence, I fly unto Thee!
O Virgin of virgins, My Mother!

To Thee I come before Thee I stand,
Sinful and Sorrowful,
Oh Mother of the Word Incarnate,
Despise not my petitions, but in thy mercy,
Hear and answer me.


Amen

A Mother’s Love, The Blessed Virgin Mary Saying YES To God
Chesterton on devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary [Ecumenical]
The Perpetual Virginity of Blessed Mary
A Comparison is Instituted Between the Disobedient and Sinning Eve and the Virgin Mary..

Magnificat: The Hymn of the Blessed Virgin Mary [Catholic Caucus]
The Blessed Virgin Mary's Role in the Celibate Priest's Spousal... (Pt 2) (CATHOLIC CAUCUS)
The Blessed Virgin Mary's Role in the Celibate Priest's Spousal and Paternal Love (CATHOLIC CAUCUS)
Discovering Mary [Excellent New Book For Converts]
Beginning Our Lady's Month [Catholic Caucus]
Give it all to Mary [Catholic Caucus]
JESUS LIVING IN MARY: HANDBOOK, SPIRITUALITY OF ST. LOUIS DE MONTFORT, ROSARY [Ecumenical]
Mary, Tabernacle of the Lord By Archbishop Fulton Sheen(Catholic Caucus)
A Protestant Discovers Mary
Mary is our Mother and Queen of the New Davidic Kingdom (Scriptures Agree With Catholic Church)

Hail Mary
Holy Water Silhouette (Virgin Mary -video))
How could Mary be the Mother of God?
Mary, the Mother of God (a defense)
Calling Mary “Mother of God” Tells Us Who Jesus Is
The Holy Spirit And Mary (Catholic Caucus)
Mary, Our Cause of Rejoicing
Mary in Byzantine Doctrine and Devotion (Catholic / Orthodox Caucus)
Radio Replies First Volume - Devotion to Mary
The Blessed Virgin Mary and the Catholic Discovery of America(Catholic Caucus)

Mary is the star that guides us to holiness, says Holy Father during Angelus [Catholic Caucus]
The Efficacy and Power of One Hail Mary [Ecumenical]
When Did Belief in the Virgin Birth Begin?
Mary, Motherhood, and the Home BY Archbishop Fulton Sheen
On Mary, Mother of Priests
Benedict reflects on Mary and the priesthood [Catholic Caucus]
Radio Replies First Volume - Mary
Scholar says Baptists neglect lessons from Virgin Mary
Mary and the Sword Continued Part #2 by Bishop Fulton J. Sheen
Mary and the Sword by Bishop Fulton J. Sheen(Catholic Caucus)

Why Did Mary Offer a Sin Offering? [Ecumenical]
Mary and Intercessory Prayer
Mary: Holy Mother
Mary not just for Catholics anymore
Pope concludes Month of Mary in the Vatican Gardens
Consecration to Mary(Catholic Caucus)
Mary’s Marching Orders
Praying the Hail Mary Like Never Before [Ecumenical]
Our Lady of the Most Blessed Sacrament [Catholic Caucus]
Catholic Caucus: The Catechism of St. Thomas Aquinas - THE HAIL MARY

Our Jewish Roots: The Immaculate Conception [Ecumenical]
The Blessed Virgin in the History of Christianity [Ecumenical]
Archbishop Sheen Today! -- Mary and the Moslems
Mary Immaculate: Patroness of the United States [Catholic/Orthodox Caucus]
"The Woman He Loved": Fulton Sheen and the Blessed Mother(Catholic Caucus)
September 12: The Most Holy Name of Mary and Militant Islam
Catholic Devotional: Feast of the Holy Name of Mary
A Homily on the Feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary
May Devotion: Blessed Virgin Mary
Catholic Caucus: Mary, The Power of Her Name [The Most Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary]

18 posted on 05/16/2012 11:23:51 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

May 2012

Pope's intentions

General Intention: The Family. That initiatives which defend and uphold the role of the family may be promoted within society. .

Missionary Intention: Mary, Guide of Missionaries. That Mary, Queen of the World and Star of Evangelization, may accompany all missionaries in proclaiming her Son Jesus.


19 posted on 05/16/2012 11:24:32 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Thursday, May 17, 2012
St. Paschal Baylon, OFM, Religious (Memorial)
First Reading:
Psalm:
Gospel:
Acts 18:1-8
Psalm 98:1-4
John 16:16-20

He who does not meditate acts as one who never looks into the mirror and so does not bother to put himself in order, since he can be dirty without knowing it. The person who meditates and turns his thoughts to God who is the mirror of the soul, seeks to know his defects and tries to correct them, moderates himself in his impulses and puts his conscience in order.

-- Saint Pio of Pietrelcina


20 posted on 05/16/2012 11:28:22 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

Regina Coeli

 

This prayer, which dates from the twelfth century, is substituted for the Angelus during Easter Season.

Glory to God in the highest!

In Latin

In English

Regina coeli, laetare, alleluia: Quia quem meruisti portare, alleluia. Resurrexit sicut dixit, alleluia. Ora pro nobis Deum, alleluia.

 

V. Gaude et laetare, Virgo Maria, Alleluia,

R. Quia surrexit Dominus vere, alleluia.

 

Oremus: Deus qui per resurrectionem Filii tui, Domini nostri Iesu Christi, mundum laetificare dignatus es: praesta, quaesumus, ut per eius Genetricem Virginem Mariam, perpetuae capiamus gaudia vitae. Per eundem Christum Dominum nostrum.

R. Amen.

Queen of Heaven rejoice, alleluia: For He whom you merited to bear, alleluia, Has risen as He said, alleluia. Pray for us to God, alleluia.

 

V. Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary, alleluia.

R. Because the Lord is truly risen, alleluia.

 

Let us pray: O God, who by the Resurrection of Thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, granted joy to the whole world: grant we beseech Thee, that through the intercession of the Virgin Mary, His Mother, we may lay hold of the joys of eternal life. Through the same Christ our Lord.

R. Amen.


21 posted on 05/16/2012 11:29:12 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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Office of Readings

The texts to be used if the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord is celebrated are found after the texts for the ferial day of Easter. Please scroll down to view them.

INVITATORY


The Invitatory may be said for the first ‘hour’ recited in the day.

Lord, + open my lips.
And my mouth will proclaim your praise.

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

Psalm 95
A call to praise God

Encourage each other daily while it is still today (Hebrews 3:13).

Come, let us sing to the Lord *
   and shout with joy to the Rock who saves us.
Let us approach him with praise and thanksgiving *
   and sing joyful songs to the Lord.

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

The Lord is God, the mighty God, *
   the great king over all the gods.
He holds in his hands the depths of the earth *
   and the highest mountains as well.
He made the sea; it belongs to him, *
   the dry land, too, for it was formed by his hands.

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

Come, then, let us bow down and worship *
   bending the knee before the Lord, our maker.
For he is our God and we are his people, *
   the flock he shepherds.

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

Today, listen to the voice of the Lord:
Do not grow stubborn, as your fathers did
   in the wilderness, *
when at Meriba and Massah
   they challenged me and provoked me, *
Although they had seen all of my works.

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

Forty years I endured that generation. *
I said, “They are a people whose hearts go astray
   and they do not know my ways.”
So I swore in my anger, *
   “They shall not enter into my rest.”

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

If the Invitatory is not said, then the following is used:

God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

HYMN

Christ the Lord is ris’n today;
Christians, haste your vows to pay;
Offer you your praises meet
At the Paschal Victim’s feet.
For the sheep the Lamb has bled,
Sinless in the sinner’s stead;
Christ, the Lord, is ris’n on high,
Now he lives no more to die!

Christ, the Victim undefiled,
Man to God has reconciled;
When in strange and awful strife
Met together death and life;
Christians, on this happy day
Haste with joy your vows to pay.
Christ, the Lord, is ris’n on high,
Now he lives no more to die!

Christ, who once for sinners bled,
Now the firstborn from the dead,
Throned in endless might and power,
Lives and reigns forevermore.
Hail, eternal Hope on high!
Hail, our King of Victory!
Hail, our Prince of life adored!
Help and save us, gracious Lord.

Tune: Victimae Paschali Laudes 77.77 D
Music: Traditional, alt.
Text: Victimae Paschali Laudes, Wipo, eleventh century

Or:

The day of resurrection!
Earth spread the news abroad;
The Paschal feast of gladness,
The Paschal feast of God.
From death to life eternal,
From earth to heaven’s height
Our Savior Christ has brought us,
The glorious Lord of Light.

Our hearts be free from evil
That we may see aright
The Savior resurrected
In his eternal light;
And hear his message plainly,
Delivered calm and clear:
“Rejoice with me in triumph,
Be glad and do not fear.”

Now let the heav’ns be joyful,
And earth her song begin,
The whole world keep high triumph
And all that is therein;
Let all things in creation
Their notes of gladness blend,
For Christ the Lord has risen,
Our joy that has no end.

Tune: Ellacombe or Aurelia 76.76 D
Music: (Ellacombe) Wurtemburg Gesangbuch, 1784, adapted in the Mainz Gesangbuch, 1833, and further adapted in the St. Gall Gesangbuch, 1863; (Aurelia) S. S. Wesley, 1810-1876
Text: John Mason Neale, 1818-1866, adapted by Anthony G. Petti

PSALMODY


Ant. 1 Lord, you are our savior; we will praise you for ever, alleluia.

Psalm 44
The misfortunes of God’s people


We triumph over all these things through him who loved us (Romans 8:37).

I

We heard with our own ears, O God, *
our fathers have told us the story
of the things you did in their days, *
you yourself, in days long ago.

To plant them you uprooted the nations: *
to let them spread you laid peoples low.
No sword of their own won the land; *
no arm of their own brought them victory.
It was your right hand, your arm *
and the light of your face: for you loved them.

It is you, my king, my God, *
who granted victories to Jacob.
Through you we beat down our foes; *
in your name we trampled down our aggressors.

For it was not in my bow that I trusted *
nor yet was I saved by my sword:
it was you who saved us from our foes, *
it was you who put our foes to shame.
All day long our boast was in God *
and we praised your name without ceasing.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Lord, you are our Savior; we will praise you for ever, alleluia.

Ant. 2 Spare us, O Lord; do not bring your own people into contempt, alleluia.

II

Yet now you have rejected us, disgraced us: *
you no longer go forth with our armies.
You make us retreat from the foe *
and our enemies plunder us at will.

You make us like sheep for the slaughter *
and scatter us among the nations.
You sell your own people for nothing *
and make no profit by the sale.

You make us the taunt of our neighbors, *
the laughing stock of all who are near.
Among the nations, you make us a byword, *
among the peoples a thing of derision.

All day long my disgrace is before me: *
my face is covered with shame
at the voice of the taunter, the scoffer, *
at the sight of the foe and avenger.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Spare us, O Lord; do not bring your own people into contempt, alleluia.

Ant. 3 Rise up, O Lord, and save us, for you are merciful, alleluia.

III

This befell us though we had not forgotten you; *
though we had not been false to your covenant,
though we had not withdrawn our hearts; *
though our feet had not strayed from your path.
Yet you have crushed us in a place of sorrows *
and covered us with the shadow of death.

Had we forgotten the name of our God *
or stretched out our hands to another god
would not God have found this out, *
he who knows the secrets of the heart?
It is for you that we face death all day long *
and are counted as sheep for the slaughter.

Awake, O Lord, why do you sleep? *
Arise, do not reject us for ever!
Why do you hide your face from us *
and forget our oppression and misery?

For we are brought down low to the dust; *
our body lies prostrate on the earth.
Stand up and come to our help! *
Redeem us because of your love!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Lord, rise up and come to our aid; with your strong arm lead us to freedom, as you mightily delivered our forefathers. Since you are the king who knows the secrets of our hearts, fill them with the light of truth.

Ant. Rise up, O Lord, and save us, for you are merciful, alleluia.

Christ Jesus, you have risen from the dead, alleluia.
Let the heavens and the earth rejoice, alleluia.

READINGS


FIRST READING

From the first letter of the apostle John
3:1-10

We are children of God

See what love the Father has bestowed on us
in letting us be called children of God!
Yet that is what we are.
The reason the world does not recognize us
is that it never recognized the Son.

Dearly beloved,
we are God’s children now;
what we shall later be has not yet come to light.
We know that when it comes to light
we shall be like him,
for we shall see him as he is.

Everyone who has this hope based on him
keeps himself pure, as he is pure.
Everyone who sins acts lawlessly
for sin is lawlessness.
You know well that the reason he revealed himself
was to take away sins;
in him there is nothing sinful.
The man who remains in him does not sin.
The man who sins has not seen him or known him.

Little ones,
let no one deceive you;
the man who acts in holiness is holy indeed,
even as the Son is holy.
The man who sins belongs to the devil,
because the devil is a sinner from the beginning.
It was to destroy the devil’s works
that the Son of God revealed himself.
No one begotten of God acts sinfully
because he remains of God’s stock;
he cannot sin
because he is begotten of God.

This is the way to see who are God’s children,
and who are the devil’s.
No one whose actions are unholy belongs to God,
nor anyone who fails to love his brother.

RESPONSORY
1 John 3:1, 2

See how great is the love the Father has given us:
we are called God’s children,
and that is what we are, alleluia.

We know that when he appears,
we shall be like him,
for we shall see him as he really is.
We are called God’s children,
and that is what we are, alleluia.

SECOND READING

From a sermon by Saint Leo the Great, pope
(Sermo 2 de Ascensione 1-4; PL 54, 397-399)

Our faith is increased by the Lord’s ascension

At Easter, beloved brethren, it was the Lord’s resurrection which was the cause of our joy; our present rejoicing is on account of his ascension into heaven. With all due solemnity we are commemorating that day on which our poor human nature was carried up, in Christ, above all the hosts of heaven, above all the ranks of angels, beyond the highest heavenly powers to the very throne of God the Father. It is upon this ordered structure of divine acts that we have been firmly established, so that the grace of God may show itself still more marvelous when, in spite of the withdrawal from men’s sight of everything that is rightly felt to command their reverence, faith does not fail, hope is not shaken, charity does not grow cold.
 
For such is the power of great minds, such is the light of truly believing souls, that they put unhesitating faith in what is not seen with the bodily eye; they fix their desires on what is beyond sight. Such fidelity could never be born in our hearts, nor could anyone be justified by faith, if our salvation lay only in what was visible.
 
And so our Redeemer’s visible presence has passed into the sacraments. Our faith is nobler and stronger because sight has been replaced by a doctrine whose authority is accepted by believing hearts, enlightened from on high. This faith was increased by the Lord’s ascension and strengthened by the gift of the Spirit; it would remain unshaken by fetters and imprisonment, exile and hunger, fire and ravening beasts, and the most refined tortures ever devised by brutal persecutors. Throughout the world women no less than men, tender girls as well as boys, have given their life’s blood in the struggle for this faith. It is a faith that has driven out devils, healed the sick and raised the dead.
 
Even the blessed apostles, though they had been strengthened by so many miracles and instructed by so much teaching, took fright at the cruel suffering of the Lord’s passion and could not accept his resurrection without hesitation. Yet they made such progress through his ascension that they now found joy in what had terrified them before. They were able to fix their minds on Christ’s divinity as he sat at the right hand of his Father, since what was presented to their bodily eyes no longer hindered them from turning all their attention to the realisation that he had not left his Father when he came down to earth, nor had he abandoned his disciples when he ascended into heaven.
 
The truth is that the Son of Man was revealed as Son of God in a more perfect and transcendent way once he had entered into his Father’s glory; he now began to be indescribably more present in his divinity to those from whom he was further removed in his humanity. A more mature faith enabled their minds to stretch upward to the Son in his equality with the Father; it no longer needed contact with Christ’s tangible body, in which as man he is inferior to the Father. For while his glorified body retained the same nature, the faith of those who believed in him was now summoned to heights where, as the Father’s equal, the only-begotten Son is reached not by physical handling but by spiritual discernment.

RESPONSORY
Hebrews 8:1; 10:22, 23

We have such a high priest
who sits at the right hand of the throne of majesty in heaven.
Let us approach him in true sincerity and full of faith,
with our hearts cleansed and freed from an evil conscience, alleluia.

Let us stand firm in the profession of our hope,
for he who made the promise is faithful.
Let us approach him in true sincerity and full of faith,
with our hearts cleansed and freed from an evil conscience, alleluia.

CONCLUDING PRAYER


Let us pray.

God of mercy,
may the Easter mystery we celebrate
be effective throughout our lives.
Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

ACCLAMATION


Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.

If the Ascension is celebrated, then the following is used:

INVITATORY


The Invitatory may be said for the first ‘hour’ recited in the day.

Lord, + open my lips.
And my mouth will proclaim your praise.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

Psalm 95
A call to praise God

Encourage each other daily while it is still today (Hebrews 3:13).

Come, let us sing to the Lord *
  and shout with joy to the Rock who saves us.
Let us approach him with praise and thanksgiving *
  and sing joyful songs to the Lord.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

The Lord is God, the mighty God, *
  the great king over all the gods.
He holds in his hands the depths of the earth *
  and the highest mountains as well.
He made the sea; it belongs to him, *
  the dry land, too, for it was formed by his hands.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

Come, then, let us bow down and worship *
  bending the knee before the Lord, our maker.
For he is our God and we are his people, *
  the flock he shepherds.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

Today, listen to the voice of the Lord: *
Do not grow stubborn, as your fathers did
  in the wilderness,
when at Meriba and Massah
  they challenged me and provoked me, *
Although they had seen all of my works.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

Forty years I endured that generation.
I said, “They are a people whose hearts go astray *
  and they do not know my ways.”
So I swore in my anger, *
  “They shall not enter into my rest.”

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

If the Invitatory is not said, then the following is used:

God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

HYMN

Greeting the dawn of this great feast
Our hearts are filled with joy today,
When we recall how Christ our God
Ascended to his realms of light.

Winner for ever in the strife
Against the prince of death and sin,
Glory of all creation’s hope,
Before the Father’s face he stands.

Brightest of clouds hid him from sight,
But pledge remained of life to come,
Since Paradise can now be ours
Which our first parents host by sin.

Greatest of joys mankind can claim,
That he whom holy Mary bore,
Reigns at his Father’s side in pow’r,
His Cross and bitter Passion past.

Saving Avenger of our race,
To him our grateful hearts we raise;
In his immortal deity
Our mortal nature dwells on high.

We have a lasting cause for joy,
Which all the saints and angels share;
Theirs is the bliss of seeing him,
And we still know that he is near.

Jesus, in splendor bright enthroned,
Keep all our hearts at rest in you,
Sending your Spirit down to us,
To teach the Father’s love for all. Amen.

Melody: Duke Street, L.M.
Music: John Hatton, ca. 1710-1793
Text: Optatus votis omnium. © Benedictines of St. Cecilia’s Abbey, Ryde, UK. Used with permission.     .

PSALMODY


Ant. 1 Sing to God, sing psalms to his name, make a path for him who rides high above the clouds, alleluia.

Psalm 68
The Lord’s triumphant entrance into his sanctuary

Ascending on high he led captivity captive, and gave gifts to men (Ephesians 4:10).

I

Let God arise, let his foes be scattered. *
Let those who hate him flee before him.
As smoke is blown away so will they be blown away;
like wax that melts before the fire, *
so the wicked shall perish at the presence of God.

But the just shall rejoice at the presence of God, *
they shall exult and dance for joy.
O sing to the Lord, make music to his name;
make a highway for him who rides on the clouds. *
Rejoice in the Lord, exult at his presence.

Father of the orphan, defender of the widow, *
such is God in his holy place.
God gives the lonely a home to live in;
he leads the prisoners forth into freedom; *
but rebels must dwell in a parched land.

When you went forth, O God, at the head of your people, *
when you marched across the desert, the earth trembled:
the heavens melted at the presence of God, *
at the presence of God, Israel’s God.

You poured down, O God, a generous rain; *
when your people were starved you gave them new life.
It was there that your people found a home, *
prepared in your goodness, O God, for the poor.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Sing to God, sing psalms to his name, make a path for him who rides high above the clouds, alleluia.

Ant. 2 The Lord God ascended on high; he has led captivity captive, alleluia.

II

The Lord gives the word to the bearers of good tidings: *
The Almighty has defeated a numberless army
and king sand armies are in flight, in flight *
while you were at rest among the sheepfolds.

At home the women already share the spoil. *
They are covered with silver as the wings of a dove,
its feathers brilliant with shining gold *
and jewels flashing like snow on Mount Zalmon.

The mountains of Bashan are mighty mountains; *
high-ridged mountains are the mountains of Bashan.
Why look with envy, you high-ridged mountains,
at the mountain where God has chosen to dwell? *
It is there that the Lord shall dwell for ever.

The chariots of God are thousands upon thousands. *
The Lord has come from Sinai to the holy place.
You have gone up on high; you have taken captives,
receiving men and women in tribute, O God, *
even those who rebel, into your dwelling, O Lord.

May the Lord be blessed day after day. *
He bears our burdens, God our savior;
this God of ours is a God who saves. *
The Lord our God holds the keys of death.
And God will smite the head of his foes, *
the crown of those who persist in their sins.

The Lord said: “I will bring them back from Bashan; *
I will bring them back from the depth of the sea.
Then your feet will tread in their blood *
and the tongues of your dogs take their share of the foe.”

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. The Lord God ascended on high; he has led captivity captive, alleluia.

Ant. 3 They see your procession, O God, the procession of my God and king to the sanctuary, alleluia.

III

They see your solemn procession, O God, *
the procession of my God, of my king, to the sanctuary:
the singers in the forefront, the musicians coming last, *
between them, maidens sounding their timbrels.

“In festive gatherings, bless the Lord; *
bless God, O you who are Israel’s sons.”
There is Benjamin, least of the tribes, at the head,
Judah’s princes, a mighty throng, *
Zebulun’s princes, Naphtali’s princes.

Show forth, O God, show forth your might, *
your might, O God, which you have shown for us.
For the sake of your temple high in Jerusalem *
may nations come to you bringing their tribute.

Threaten the wild beast that dwells in the reeds, *
the bands of the mighty and lords of the peoples.
Let them bow down offering silver. *
Scatter the peoples who delight in war.
Princes will make their way from Egypt; *
Ethiopia will stretch out her hands to God.

Kingdoms of the earth, sing to God, praise the Lord *
who rides on the heavens, the ancient heavens.
He thunders his voice, his mighty voice. *
Come, acknowledge the power of God.

His glory is on Israel; his might is in the skies. *
God is to be feared in his holy place.
He is the Lord, Israel’s God. *
He gives strength and power to his people.

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 will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Lord Jesus Christ, King of the universe, you have given us joy in your holy meal. Help us to understand the significance of your death and to acknowledge you as the conqueror of death seated at the right hand of the Father.

Ant. They see your procession, O God, the procession of my God and king to the sanctuary, alleluia.

The Lord opened their minds, alleluia.
That they might understand the Scriptures, alleluia.

READINGS


FIRST READING

From the letter of the apostle Paul to the Ephesians
4:1-24

He ascended to heaven and led captivity captive

I plead with you, as a prisoner for the Lord, to live a life worthy of the calling you have received, with perfect humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another lovingly. Make every effort to preserve the unity which has the Spirit as its origin and peace as its binding force. There is but one body and one Spirit, just as there is but one hope given all of you by your call. There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all, and works through all, and is in all.

Each of us has received God’s favor in the measure in which Christ bestows it. Thus you find Scripture saying:

   “When he ascended on high, he took a host of captives
   and gave gifts to men.”

“He ascended”—what does this mean but that he had first descended into the lower regions of the earth? He who descended is the very one who ascended high above the heavens, that he might fill all men with his gifts.

It is he who gave apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers in roles of service for the faithful to build up the body of Christ, till we become one in faith and in the knowledge of God’s Son, and form that perfect man who is Christ come to full stature.

Let us, then, be children no longer, tossed here and there, carried about by every wind of doctrine that originates in human trickery and skill in proposing error. Rather, let us profess the truth in love and grow to the full maturity of Christ the head. Through him the whole body grows, and with the proper functioning of the members joined firmly together by each supporting ligament, builds itself up in love.

I declare and solemnly attest in the Lord that you must no longer live as the pagans do—their minds empty, their understanding darkened. They are estranged from a life in God because of their ignorance and their resistance; without remorse they have abandoned themselves to lust and the indulgence of every sort of lewd conduct.

That is not what you learned when you learned Christ! I am supposing, of course, that he has been preached and taught to you in accord with the truth that is in Jesus: namely, that you must lay aside your former way of life and the old self which deteriorates through illusion and desire, and acquire a fresh, spiritual way of thinking. You must put on that new man created in God’s image, whose justice and holiness are born of truth.

RESPONSORY
Ephesians 4:8; Psalms 68:19; Psalms 47:6

When Christ ascended on high,
he led captivity captive,
he gave gifts to men, alleluia.

God ascends to shouts of joy,
the Lord to the blasts of trumpets.
He gave gifts to men, alleluia.

SECOND READING

From a sermon by Saint Augustine, bishop
(Sermo de Ascensione Domini, Mai 98, 1-2: PLS 2, 494-495)

No one has ever ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven

Today our Lord Jesus Christ ascended into heaven; let our hearts ascend with him. Listen to the words of the Apostle: If you have risen with Christ, set your hearts on the things that are above where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God; seek the things that are above, not the things that are on earth. For just as he remained with us even after his ascension, so we too are already in heaven with him, even though what is promised us has not yet been fulfilled in our bodies.

Christ is now exalted above the heavens, but he still suffers on earth all the pain that we, the members of his body, have to bear. He showed this when he cried out from above: Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? and when he said: I was hungry and you gave me food.

Why do we on earth not strive to find rest with him in heaven even now, through the faith, hope and love that unites us to him? While in heaven he is also with us; and we while on earth are with him. He is here with us by his divinity, his power and his love. We cannot be in heaven, as he is on earth, by divinity, but in him, we can be there by love.

He did not leave heaven when he came down to us; nor did he withdraw from us when he went up again into heaven. The fact that he was in heaven even while he was on earth is borne out by his own statement: No one has ever ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the Son of Man, who is in heaven.

These words are explained by our oneness with Christ, for he is our head and we are his body. No one ascended into heaven except Christ because we also are Christ: he is the Son of Man by his union with us, and we by our union with him are the sons of God. So the Apostle says: Just as the human body, which has many members, is a unity, because all the different members make one body, so is it also with Christ. He too has many members, but one body.

Out of compassion for us he descended from heaven, and although he ascended alone, we also ascend, because we are in him by grace. Thus, no one but Christ descended and no one but Christ ascended; not because there is no distinction between the head and the body, but because the body as a unity cannot be separated from the head.

RESPONSORY
Acts 1:3, 9, 4

During the forty days after his passion,
he appeared to them and spoke with them about the kingdom of God.
As they watched, he was lifted up,
and a cloud took him from their sight, alleluia.

While he was with them,
he told them not to leave Jerusalem,
but to wait there for the fulfillment of the Father’s promise.
As they watched, he was lifted up,
and a cloud took him from their sight, alleluia.

If the Optional Vigil is not celebrated the Office continues with the Te Deum


OPTIONAL VIGIL


CANTICLES


Ant. Come, let us worship the Lord who has risen from the dead; through his cross joy came into the world, alleluia.

Canticle I: Isaiah 63:1-5
The Lord alone has triumphed over the enemy

By the blood of the Lamb they defeated the dragon (see Revelation 12:11).

Who is this that comes from Edom, *
in crimsoned garments, from Bozrah—
This one arrayed in majesty, *
marching in the greatness of his strength?

“It is I, I who announce vindication, *
I who am mighty to save.”
Why is your apparel red, *
and your garments like those of the wine presser?

“The wine press I have trodden alone, *
and of my people there was no one with me.
I trod them in my anger, *
and trampled them down in my wrath;
their blood spurted on my garments; *
all my apparel I stained.

For the day of vengeance was in my heart, *
my year for redeeming was at hand.
I looked about, but there was no one to help, *
I was appalled that there was no one to lend support;
so my own arm brought about the victory *
and my own wrath lent me its support.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Canticle II: Hosea 6:1-6
The Lord is compassionate; he desires mercy and not sacrifice

On the third day Christ rose from the dead in accordance with the Scriptures (1 Corinthians 15:4)

Come, let us return to the Lord,
for it is he who has rent, but he will heal us; *
he has struck us, but he will bind our wounds.

He will revive us after two days;
on the third day he will raise us up, *
to live in his presence.

Let us know, let us strive to know the Lord;
as certain as the dawn is his coming, *
and his judgment shines forth like the light of day!

He will come to us like the rain, *
like spring rain that waters the earth.

What can I do with you, Ephraim? *
What can I do with you, Judah?
Your piety is like a morning cloud, *
like the dew that early passes away.

For this reason I smote them through the prophets, *
I slew them by the words of my mouth;
for it is love that I desire, not sacrifice, *
and knowledge of God rather than holocausts.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Canticle III: Zephaniah 3:8-13
In the end the remnant of Israel will be saved

Isaiah proclaimed this about Israel: Though the Israelites be as numerous as the sands of the sea, only a remnant will be saved (Romans 9:27).

Wait for me, says the Lord, *
against the day when I arise as accuser;
for it is my decision to gather together the nations, *
to assemble the kingdoms,

in order to pour out upon them my wrath, *
all my blazing anger;
for in the fire of my jealousy *
shall all the earth be consumed.

For then I will change and purify *
the lips of the peoples,
that they all may call upon the name of the Lord, *
to serve him with one accord;

from beyond the rivers of Ethiopia
and as far as the recesses of the North, *
they shall bring me offerings.

On that day *
you need not be ashamed
of all your deeds, *
your rebellious actions against me;

for then will I remove from your midst *
the proud braggarts,
and you shall no longer exalt yourself *
on my holy mountain.

But I will leave as a remnant in your midst *
a people humble and lowly,
who shall take refuge in the name of the Lord: *
the remnant of Israel.

They shall do no wrong *
and speak no lies;
nor shall there be found in their mouths *
a deceitful tongue;
they shall pasture and couch their flocks *
with none to disturb them.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Come, let us worship the Lord who has risen from the dead; through his cross joy came into the world, alleluia.

THE HOLY GOSPEL


+ A reading from the conclusion of the holy Gospel according to Matthew

28:16-20


All power in heaven and earth has been given to me.

The eleven disciples went to Galilee,
   to the mountain to which Jesus had ordered them.
When they saw him, they worshiped, but they doubted.
Then Jesus approached and said to them,
   “All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me.
Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations,
   baptizing them in the name of the Father,
   and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit,
   teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.
And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.”

Or:

+ A reading from the conclusion of the holy Gospel according to Luke
24:46-53

As he blessed them, he was taken up to heaven.

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Thus it is written that the Messiah would suffer
   and rise from the dead on the third day
   and that repentance, for the forgiveness of sins,
   would be preached in his name
    to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
You are witnesses of these things.
And behold I am sending the promise of my Father upon you;
   but stay in the city
   until you are clothed with power from on high.”

Then he led them out as far as Bethany,
   raised his hands, and blessed them.
As he blessed them he parted from them
   and was taken up to heaven.
They did him homage
   and then returned to Jerusalem with great joy,
   and they were continually in the temple praising God.

A homily on the Gospel may be given.

TE DEUM


You are God: we praise you;
You are the Lord: we acclaim you;
You are the eternal Father:
All creation worships you.

To you all angels, all the powers of heaven,
Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise:
   Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might,
   heaven and earth are full of your glory.

The glorious company of apostles praise you.
The noble fellowship of prophets praise you.
The white-robed army of martyrs praise you.

Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you:
   Father, of majesty unbounded,
   your true and only Son, worthy of all worship,
   and the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide.

You, Christ, are the king of glory,
the eternal Son of the Father.

When you became man to set us free
you did not shun the Virgin’s womb.

You overcame the sting of death,
and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers.

You are seated at God’s right hand in glory.
We believe that you will come, and be our judge.

Come then, Lord, and help your people,
bought with the price of your own blood,
and bring us with your saints
to glory everlasting.

V. Save your people, Lord, and bless your inheritance.
R. Govern and uphold them now and always.
V. Day by day we bless you.
R. We praise your name for ever.
V. Keep us today, Lord, from all sin.
R. Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy.
V. Lord, show us your love and mercy;
R. for we put our trust in you.
V. In you, Lord, is our hope:
R. and we shall never hope in vain.

The final part of the hymn may be omitted.

CONCLUDING PRAYER


Let us pray.

God our Father,
make us joyful in the ascension of your Son Jesus Christ.
May we follow him into the new creation,
for his ascension is our glory and our hope.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

Or:

Gladden us with holy joys, almighty God,
and make us rejoice with devout thanksgiving,
for the Ascension of Christ your Son
is our exaltation,
and, where the Head has gone before us in glory,
the Body is called to follow in hope.
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.

Or:

Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that we, who believe that your Only Begotten Son, our Redeemer,
ascended this day to the heavens,
may in spirit dwell already in heavenly realms.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

ACCLAMATION


Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.
22 posted on 05/17/2012 2:16:11 AM PDT by markomalley (Nothing emboldens the wicked so greatly as the lack of courage on the part of the good-Pope Leo XIII)
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Lauds

The texts to be used if the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord is celebrated are found after the texts for the ferial day of Easter. Please scroll down to view them.

INVITATORY


The Invitatory may be said for the first ‘‘hour’ recited in the day.

Lord, + open my lips.
And my mouth will proclaim your praise.

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

Psalm 95
A call to praise God

Encourage each other daily while it is still today (Hebrews 3:13).

Come, let us sing to the Lord *
   and shout with joy to the Rock who saves us.
Let us approach him with praise and thanksgiving *
   and sing joyful songs to the Lord.

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

The Lord is God, the mighty God, *
   the great king over all the gods.
He holds in his hands the depths of the earth *
   and the highest mountains as well.
He made the sea; it belongs to him, *
   the dry land, too, for it was formed by his hands.

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

Come, then, let us bow down and worship *
   bending the knee before the Lord, our maker.
For he is our God and we are his people, *
   the flock he shepherds.

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

Today, listen to the voice of the Lord:
Do not grow stubborn, as your fathers did
   in the wilderness, *
when at Meriba and Massah
   they challenged me and provoked me, *
Although they had seen all of my works.

Ant.The Lord is risen, alleluia.

Forty years I endured that generation. *
I said, “They are a people whose hearts go astray
   and they do not know my ways.”
So I swore in my anger, *
   “They shall not enter into my rest.”

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

If the Invitatory is not said, then the following is used:

God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

HYMN


Jesus Christ is ris’n today, Alleluia
Our triumphant holy day, Alleluia!
Who did once upon the cross, Alleluia!
Suffer to redeem our loss, Alleluia!

Hymns of praise then let us sing, Alleluia!
Unto Christ our heav’nly King, Alleluia!
Who endured the cross and grave, Alleluia!
Sinners to redeem and save, Alleluia!

But the pains which he endured, Alleluia!
Our salvation have procured, Alleluia!
Now He rules eternal King, Alleluia!
Where the angels ever sing, Alleluia!

Praise to God the Father sing, Alleluia!
Praise to God the Son, our King, Alleluia!
Praise to God the Spirit be, Alleluia!
Now and through eternity, Alleluia!

Tune: Easter Hymn 77.77 with alleluia
Music: Lyra Davidica, 1708
Text: I. Latin Carol, para. In Lyra Davidica, 1708, alt Stanzas 2,3, The Compleat Psalmodist, 1749, alt. St. 4, William Reynolds, 1860

Or:

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.
Ye sons and daughters, let us sing!
The King of Heav’n, the glorious King,
O’er death today rose triumphing.
Alleluia!

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.
That Easter morn, at break of day,
The faithful women went their way
To seek the tomb where Jesus lay.
Alleluia!

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.
An angel clad in white they see,
Who sat, and spoke unto the three,
“Your Lord doth go to Galilee.”
Alleluia!

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.
On this most holy day of days,
To God your hearts and voices raise,
In laud and jubilee and praise.
Alleluia!

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.
And we with Holy Church unite,
As evermore is just and right,
In glory to the King of light.
Alleluia!

Tune: O Filii et Filiae 88.88 with alleluias
Music: Seventeenth Century French Proper Melody
Text: Jean Tisserand, d. 1495
Translation: John Mason Neale, 1818-1866, alt.

PSALMODY


Ant. 1 I am the vine; you are the branches, alleluia.

Psalm 80
Lord, come, take care of your vineyard


Come, Lord Jesus (Revelation 22:20).

O shepherd of Israel, hear us, *
you who lead Joseph’s flock,
shine forth from your cherubim throne *
upon Ephraim, Benjamin, Manasseh.
O Lord, rouse up your might, *
O Lord, come to our help.

God of hosts, bring us back; *
let your face shine on us and we shall be saved.

Lord God of hosts, how long *
will you frown on your people’s plea?
You have fed them with tears for their bread, *
an abundance of tears for their drink.
You have made us the taunt of our neighbors, *
our enemies laugh us to scorn.

God of hosts, bring us back; *
let your face shine on us and we shall be saved.

You brought a vine out of Egypt; *
to plant it you drove out the nations.
Before it you cleared the ground; *
it took root and spread through the land.

The mountains were covered with its shadow, *
the cedars of God with its boughs.
It stretched out its branches to the sea, *
to the Great River it stretched out its shoots.

Then why have you broken down its walls? *
It is plucked by all who pass by.
It is ravaged by the boar of the forest, *
devoured by the beasts of the field.

God of hosts, turn again, we implore, *
look down from heaven and see.
Visit this vine and protect it, *
the vine your right hand has planted.
Men have burnt it with fire and destroyed it. *
May they perish at the frown of your face.

May your hand be on the man you have chosen, *
the man you have given your strength.
And we shall never forsake you again: *
give us life that we may call upon your name.

God of hosts, bring us back; *
let your face shine on us and we shall be saved.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Lord God, eternal shepherd, you so tend the vineyard you planted that now it extends its branches even to the farthest coast. Look down on your Church and come to us. Help us remain in your Son as branches on the vine, that, planted firmly in your love, we may testify before the whole world to your great power working everywhere.

Ant. I am the vine; you are the branches, alleluia.

Ant. 2 Rejoicing, you will draw water from the well-springs of the Savior, alleluia.

Canticle: Isaiah 12:1-6
Joy of God’s ransomed people

If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink (John 7:37).

I give you thanks, O Lord;
though you have been angry with me, *
your anger has abated, and you have consoled me.

God indeed is my savior; *
I am confident and unafraid.
My strength and my courage is the Lord, *
and he has been my savior.

With joy you will draw water *
at the fountain of salvation, and say on that day:
Give thanks to the Lord, acclaim his name;
among the nations make known his deeds, *
proclaim how exalted is his name.

Sing praise to the Lord for his glorious achievement; *
let this be known throughout all the earth.

Shout with exultation, O city of Zion,
for great in your midst *
is the Holy One of Israel!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Rejoicing, you will draw water from the well-springs of the Savior, alleluia.

Ant. 3 The Lord has fed us with the finest wheat, alleluia.

Psalm 81
Solemn renewal of the Covenant


See that no one among you has a faithless heart (Hebrews 3:12).

Ring out your joy to God our strength, *
shout in triumph to the God of Jacob.

Raise a song and sound the timbrel, *
the sweet-sounding harp and the lute,
blow the trumpet at the new moon, *
when the moon is full, on our feast.

For this is Israel’s law, *
a command of the God of Jacob.
He imposed it as a rule on Joseph, *
when he went out against the land of Egypt.

A voice I did not know said to me: *
“I freed your shoulder from the burden;
your hands were freed from the load. *
You called in distress and I saved you.

I answered, concealed in the storm cloud, *
at the waters of Meribah I tested you.
Listen, my people, to my warning, *
O Israel, if only you would heed!

Let there be no foreign god among you, *
no worship of an alien god.
I am the Lord your God,
who brought you from the land of Egypt. *
Open wide your mouth and I will fill it.

But my people did not heed my voice *
and Israel would not obey,
so I left them in their stubbornness of heart *
to follow their own designs.

O that my people would heed me, *
that Israel would walk in my ways!
At once I would subdue their foes, *
turn my hand against their enemies.

The Lord’s enemies would cringe at their feet *
and their subjection would last for ever.
But Israel I would feed with finest wheat *
and fill them with honey from the rock.”

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Lord God, open our mouths to proclaim your glory. Help us to leave sin behind and to rejoice in professing your name.

Ant. The Lord has fed us with the finest wheat, alleluia.

READING

Romans 8:10-11

If Christ is in you the body is dead because of sin, while the spirit lives because of justice. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, then he who raised Jesus from the dead will bring your mortal bodies to life also, through his Spirit dwelling in you.

RESPONSORY


The Lord is risen from the tomb, alleluia, alleluia.
The Lord is risen from the tomb, alleluia, alleluia.

He hung upon the cross for us,
alleluia, alleluia.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
The Lord is risen from the tomb, alleluia, alleluia.

CANTICLE OF ZECHARIAH


Ant. In a little while you will no longer see me, says the Lord; then a little while later you will see me again since I am going to the Father, alleluia.

Luke 1:68-79
The Messiah and his forerunner

Blessed + be the Lord, the God of Israel; *
he has come to his people and set them free.

He has raised up for us a mighty savior, *
born of the house of his servant David.

Through his holy prophets he promised of old
  that he would save us from our enemies, *
  from the hands of all who hate us.

He promised to show mercy to our fathers *
and to remember his holy covenant.

This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham: *
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear, *
holy and righteous in his sight
   all the days of our life.

You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High; *
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
to give his people knowledge of salvation *
by the forgiveness of their sins.

In the tender compassion of our God *
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death, *
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. In a little while you will no longer see me, says the Lord; then a little while later you will see me again since I am going to the Father, alleluia.

INTERCESSIONS


God the Father has given us his Son for the resurrection of his people. Let us turn with confidence to the Father, and say:
May the Lord Jesus be our very life.

As a pillar of fire, you lighted the way for your people in the desert,
through his resurrection may Christ be today the light of our life.
May the Lord Jesus be our very life.

Through the voice of Moses you taught your people from the mountain,
through his resurrection may Christ be today the light of our life.
May the Lord Jesus be our very life.

You fed your pilgrim people with your gift of manna,
through his resurrection may Christ be today the light of our life.
May the Lord Jesus be our very life.

You gave your people water from the rock,
through his resurrection may Christ be today the light of our life.
May the Lord Jesus be our very life.

THE LORD’S PRAYER


(Gathering our prayer and praises into one, let us offer the prayer Christ himself taught us:)

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done on earth
as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

CONCLUDING PRAYER


Father,
may we always give you thanks
for raising Christ our Lord to glory,
because we are his people
and share the salvation he won,
for he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

DISMISSAL


May the Lord + bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.

If the Ascension is celebrated, then the following is used:

INVITATORY


The Invitatory may be said for the first ‘hour’ recited in the day.

Lord, + open my lips.
And my mouth will proclaim your praise.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

Psalm 95
A call to praise God

Encourage each other daily while it is still today (Hebrews 3:13).

Come, let us sing to the Lord *
  and shout with joy to the Rock who saves us.
Let us approach him with praise and thanksgiving *
  and sing joyful songs to the Lord.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

The Lord is God, the mighty God, *
  the great king over all the gods.
He holds in his hands the depths of the earth *
  and the highest mountains as well.
He made the sea; it belongs to him, *
  the dry land, too, for it was formed by his hands.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

Come, then, let us bow down and worship *
  bending the knee before the Lord, our maker.
For he is our God and we are his people, *
  the flock he shepherds.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

Today, listen to the voice of the Lord: *
Do not grow stubborn, as your fathers did
  in the wilderness,
when at Meriba and Massah
  they challenged me and provoked me, *
Although they had seen all of my works.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

Forty years I endured that generation. *
I said, “They are a people whose hearts go astray
  and they do not know my ways.”
So I swore in my anger, *
  “They shall not enter into my rest.”

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Alleluia, come, let us worship Christ the Lord as he ascends into heaven, alleluia.

If the Invitatory is not said, then the following is used:

God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

HYMN


Greeting the dawn of this great feast
Our hearts are filled with joy today,
When we recall how Christ our God
Ascended to his realms of light.

Winner for ever in the strife
Against the prince of death and sin,
Glory of all creation’s hope,
Before the Father’s face he stands.

Brightest of clouds hid him from sight,
But pledge remained of life to come,
Since Paradise can now be ours
Which our first parents host by sin.

Greatest of joys mankind can claim,
That he whom holy Mary bore,
Reigns at his Father’s side in pow’r,
His Cross and bitter Passion past.

Saving Avenger of our race,
To him our grateful hearts we raise;
In his immortal deity
Our mortal nature dwells on high.

We have a lasting cause for joy,
Which all the saints and angels share;
Theirs is the bliss of seeing him,
And we still know that he is near.

Jesus, in splendor bright enthroned,
Keep all our hearts at rest in you,
Sending your Spirit down to us,
To teach the Father’s love for all. Amen.

Melody: Duke Street, L.M.
Music: John Hatton, ca. 1710-1793
Text: Optatus votis omnium. © Benedictines of Saint Cecilia’s Abbey, Ryde, UK. Used with permission.

PSALMODY


Ant. 1 Men of Galilee, why are you looking up into the sky? This Jesus who has been taken up into heaven will return in the same way, alleluia.

Psalm 63:2-9
A soul thirsting for God

Whoever has left the darkness of sin yearns for God.

O God, you are my God, for you I long; *
for you my soul is thirsting.
My body pines for you *
like a dry, weary land without water.
So I gaze on you in the sanctuary *
to see your strength and your glory.

For your love is better than life, *
my lips will speak your praise.
So I will bless you all my life, *
in your name I will lift up my hands.
My soul shall be filled as with a banquet, *
my mouth shall praise you with joy.

On my bed I remember you. *
On you I muse through the night
for you have been my help; *
in the shadow of your wings I rejoice.
My soul clings to you; *
your right hand holds me fast.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Father, creator of unfailing light, give that same light to those who call to you. May our lips praise you; our lives proclaim your goodness; our work give you honor, and our voices celebrate you for ever.

Ant. Men of Galilee, why are you looking up into the sky? This Jesus who has been taken up into heaven will return in the same way, alleluia.

Ant. 2 Give glory to the King of kings, sing praise to God, alleluia.

Canticle: Daniel 3:57-88, 56
Let all creatures praise the Lord

All you servants of the Lord, sing praise to him (Revelation 19:5).

Bless the Lord, all you works of the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Angels of the Lord, bless the Lord. *
You heavens, bless the Lord.
All you waters above the heavens, bless the Lord. *
All you hosts of the Lord, bless the Lord.
Sun and moon, bless the Lord. *
Stars of heaven, bless the Lord.

Every shower and dew, bless the Lord. *
All you winds, bless the Lord.
Fire and heat, bless the Lord. *
Cold and chill, bless the Lord.
Dew and rain, bless the Lord. *
Frost and chill, bless the Lord.
Ice and snow, bless the Lord. *
Nights and days, bless the Lord.
Light and darkness, bless the Lord. *
Lightnings and clouds, bless the Lord.

Let the earth bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Mountains and hills, bless the Lord. *
Everything growing from the earth, bless the Lord.
You springs, bless the Lord. *
Seas and rivers, bless the Lord.
You dolphins and all water creatures, bless the Lord. *
All you birds of the air, bless the Lord.
All you beasts, wild and tame, bless the Lord. *
You sons of men, bless the Lord.

O Israel, bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Priests of the Lord, bless the Lord. *
Servants of the Lord, bless the Lord.
Spirits and souls of the just, bless the Lord. *
Holy men of humble heart, bless the Lord.
Hananiah, Azariah, Mishael, bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.

Let us bless the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. *
Let us praise and exalt him above all forever.
Blessed are you, Lord, in the firmament of heaven. *
Praiseworthy and glorious and exalted above all forever.

Ant. Give glory to the King of kings, sing praise to God, alleluia.

Ant. 3 As they watched, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him from their sight, alleluia.

Psalm 149
The joy of God’s holy people

Let the sons of the Church, the children of the new people, rejoice in Christ, their King (Hesychius).

Sing a new song to the Lord, *
his praise in the assembly of the faithful.
Let Israel rejoice in its maker, *
let Zion’s sons exult in their king.
Let them praise his name with dancing *
and make music with timbrel and harp.

For the Lord takes delight in his people. * 
He crowns the poor with salvation.
Let the faithful rejoice in their glory, *
shout for joy and take their rest.
Let the praise of God be on their lips *
and a two-edged sword in their hand,

to deal out vengeance to the nations *
and punishment on all the peoples;
to bind their kings in chains *
and their nobles in fetters of iron;
to carry out the sentence pre-ordained; *
this honor is for all his faithful.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Let Israel rejoice in you, Lord, and acknowledge you as creator and redeemer. We put our trust in your faithfulness and proclaim the wonderful truths of salvation. May your loving kindness embrace us now and for ever.

Ant. As they watched, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him from their sight, alleluia.

READING

Hebrews 10:12-14

Jesus offered one sacrifice for sins and took his seat forever at the right hand of God; now he waits until his enemies are placed beneath his feet. By one offering he has forever perfected those who are being sanctified.

RESPONSORY


Christ ascended into heaven, alleluia, alleluia.
Christ ascended into heaven, alleluia, alleluia.

He led captivity captive,
alleluia, alleluia.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
Christ ascended into heaven, alleluia, alleluia.

CANTICLE OF ZECHARIAH


Ant. I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God, alleluia.

Luke 1:68-79
The Messiah and his forerunner

Blessed + be the Lord, the God of Israel; *
he has come to his people and set them free.

He has raised up for us a mighty savior, *
born of the house of his servant David.

Through his holy prophets he promised of old
  that he would save us from our enemies, *
  from the hands of all who hate us.

He promised to show mercy to our fathers *
and to remember his holy covenant.

This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham: *
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear, *
holy and righteous in his sight
   all the days of our life.

You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High; *
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
to give his people knowledge of salvation *
by the forgiveness of their sins.

In the tender compassion of our God *
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death, *
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God, alleluia.

INTERCESSIONS


The Lord has been lifted high above the earth and draws all things to himself. Let us cry out to him in our joy:
Lord Jesus, you are the King of glory.

Lord Jesus, King of glory, you were offered once as the victim for sins, and ascended to the right hand of the Father,
make perfect for all time those whom you sanctify.
Lord Jesus, you are the King of glory.

Eternal Priest and minister of the new Covenant, you live for ever to make intercession for us,
save the people that prays to you.
Lord Jesus, you are the King of glory.

You showed yourself alive after your passion and appeared to the disciples for forty days,
confirm our faith today.
Lord Jesus, you are the King of glory.

Today you promised the Spirit to your apostles, to make them your witnesses to the ends of the earth,
by the power of the Spirit strengthen our own witness.
Lord Jesus, you are the King of glory.

THE LORD’S PRAYER

(Remember us, Lord, when you come to your kingdom and teach us how to pray:)

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done on earth
as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

CONCLUDING PRAYER


God our Father,
make us joyful in the ascension of your Son Jesus Christ.
May we follow him into the new creation,
for his ascension is our glory and our hope.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

Or:

Gladden us with holy joys, almighty God,
and make us rejoice with devout thanksgiving,
for the Ascension of Christ your Son
is our exaltation,
and, where the Head has gone before us in glory,
the Body is called to follow in hope.
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.

Or:

Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that we, who believe that your Only Begotten Son, our Redeemer,
ascended this day to the heavens,
may in spirit dwell already in heavenly realms.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

DISMISSAL


May the Lord bless + us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.
23 posted on 05/17/2012 2:16:20 AM PDT by markomalley (Nothing emboldens the wicked so greatly as the lack of courage on the part of the good-Pope Leo XIII)
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Daytime Prayer

The texts to be used if the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord is celebrated are found after the texts for the ferial day of Easter. Please scroll down to view them.

INTRODUCTION


God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

HYMN


Alleluia! sing to Jesus!
His the scepter, his the throne;
Alleluia! his the triumph,
His the victory alone:
Hark! the songs of peaceful Sion
Thunder like a mighty flood;
Jesus, out of ev’ry nation,
Has redeemed us by his Blood.

Alleluia! not as orphans
Are we left in sorrow now;
Alleluia! He is near us,
Faith believes nor questions how:
Though the cloud from sight received him,
When the forty days were o’er
Shall our hearts forget his promise,
“I am with you evermore”?

Alleluia! Bread of angels,
Thou on earth our food, our stay;
Alleluia! here the sinful
Flee to thee from day to day:
Intercessor, friend of sinners,
Earth’s Redeemer, plead for me,
Where the songs of all the sinless
Sweep across the crystal sea.

Alleluia! King eternal,
Thee, the Lord of lords we own;
Alleluia! born of Mary,
Earth thy footstool, heav’n thy throne:
Thou within the veil has entered,
Robed in flesh, our great High Priest;
Thou on earth both Priest and Victim
In the Eucharistic feast.

Melody: Hyfrydol 87.87.D
Music: R. H. Prichard, 1811-1887
Text: William Chatterton Dix, 1837-1898

PSALMODY


Ant. Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.

Psalm 119:65-72
IX (Teth)

A meditation on God’s law

Loving God means keeping his commandments (1 John 5:3).

Lord, you have been good to your servant *
according to your word.
Teach me discernment and knowledge *
for I trust in your commands.

Before I was afflicted I strayed *
but now I keep your word.
You are good and your deeds are good; *
teach me your commandments.

Though the proud smear me with lies *
yet I keep your precepts.
Their minds are closed to good *
but your law is my delight.

It was good for me to be afflicted, *
to learn your will.
The law from your mouth means more to me *
than silver and gold.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son *
and to the Holy Spirit:
As it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Lord, teach us your goodness, discipline, and wisdom, and these gifts will keep us from becoming hardened by evil, weakened by laziness, or ignorant because of foolishness.

Psalm 56:2-7b, 9-14
Trust in God’s word

This psalm shows Christ in his passion (Saint Jerome).

Have mercy on me, God, men crush me;
they fight me all day long and oppress me. *
My foes crush me all day long,
for many fight proudly against me.

When I fear, I trust in you, *
in God, whose word I praise.
In God I trust, I shall not fear; *
what can mortal man do to me?

All day long they distort my words, *
all their thought is to harm me.
They band together in ambush, *
track me down and seek my life.

You have kept an account of my wanderings;
you have kept a record of my tears; *
are they not written in your book?
Then my foes will be put to flight *
on the day that I call to you.

This I know, that God is on my side. *
In God, whose word I praise,
in the Lord, whose word I praise
in God I trust; I shall not fear; *
what can mortal men do to me?

I am bound by the vows I made you. *
O God, I will offer you praise
for you have rescued my soul from death, *
you kept my feet from stumbling
that I may walk in the presence of God *
and enjoy the light of the living.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Lord Jesus Christ, victim for our sins, you trusted in your Father’s protection and kept silent when you were tormented. Give us that same confidence and we will gladly suffer with you and for you, offering the Father our sacrifice of praise and walking before him in the light of the living.

Psalm 57
Morning prayer in affliction

This psalm tells of our Lord’s passion (Saint Augustine).

Have mercy on me, God, have mercy *
for in you my soul has taken refuge.
In the shadow of your wings I take refuge *
till the storms of destruction pass by.

I call to God the Most High, *
to God who has always been my help.
May he send from heaven and save me *
and shame those who assail me.

May God send his truth and love.

My soul lies down among lions, *
who would devour the sons of men.
Their teeth are spears and arrows, *
their tongue a sharpened sword.

O God, arise above the heavens; *
may your glory shine on earth!

They laid a snare for my steps *
my soul was bowed down.
They dug a pit in my path *
but fell in it themselves.

My heart is ready, O God, *
my heart is ready.
I will sing, I will sing your praise. *
Awake, my soul;
awake, lyre and harp. *
I will awake the dawn.

I will thank you, Lord, among the peoples, *
I will praise you among the nations
for your love reaches to the heavens *
and your truth to the skies.

O God, arise above the heavens; *
may your glory shine on earth!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Lord, send your mercy and your truth to rescue us from the snares of the devil, and we will praise you among the peoples and proclaim you to the nations, happy to be known as companions of your Son.

Ant. Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.

At the other hours, the complementary psalmody is used.

MIDMORNING

READING
1 Corinthians 12:13

It was in one Spirit that all of us, whether Jew or Greek, slave or free, were baptized into one body. All of us have been given to drink of the one Spirit.

The Lord is risen, alleluia.
He has appeared to Simon, alleluia.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

God of mercy,
may the Easter mystery we celebrate
be effective throughout our lives.
Grant this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

ACCLAMATION

Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.

MIDDAY

READING
Titus 3:5b-7

God saved us through the baptism of new birth and renewal by the Holy Spirit. This Spirit he lavished on us through Jesus Christ our Savior, that we might be justified by his grace and become heirs, in hope, of eternal life.

The disciples rejoiced, alleluia.
When they saw the risen Lord, alleluia.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

God of mercy,
may the Easter mystery we celebrate
be effective throughout our lives.
Grant this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

ACCLAMATION

Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.

MIDAFTERNOON

READING
See Colossians 1:12-13

We give thanks to God the Father for having made you worthy to share the lot of the saints in light. He rescued us from the power of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of his beloved Son. Through him we have redemption, the forgiveness of our sins.

Stay with us, Lord, alleluia.
For evening draws near, alleluia.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

God of mercy,
may the Easter mystery we celebrate
be effective throughout our lives.
Grant this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

ACCLAMATION

Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.


If the Ascension is celebrated, then the following is used instead:

INTRODUCTION


God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

HYMN


Alleluia! sing to Jesus!
His the scepter, his the throne;
Alleluia! his the triumph,
His the victory alone:
Hark! the songs of peaceful Sion
Thunder like a mighty flood;
Jesus, out of ev’ry nation,
Has redeemed us by his Blood.

Alleluia! not as orphans
Are we left in sorrow now;
Alleluia! He is near us,
Faith believes nor questions how:
Though the cloud from sight received him,
When the forty days were o’er
Shall our hearts forget his promise,
“I am with you evermore”?

Alleluia! Bread of angels,
Thou on earth our food, our stay;
Alleluia! here the sinful
Flee to thee from day to day:
Intercessor, friend of sinners,
Earth’s Redeemer, plead for me,
Where the songs of all the sinless
Sweep across the crystal sea.

Alleluia! King eternal,
Thee, the Lord of lords we own;
Alleluia! born of Mary,
Earth thy footstool, heav’n thy throne:
Thou within the veil has entered,
Robed in flesh, our great High Priest;
Thou on earth both Priest and Victim
In the Eucharistic feast.

Melody: Hyfrydol 87.87.D
Music: R. H. Prichard, 1811-1887
Text: William Chatterton Dix, 1837-1898

PSALMODY


Antiphon

Midmorning: O God, your majesty is praised high above the heavens, alleluia.

Midday: From the heights of heaven he goes forth and to those heights he returns, alleluia.

Midafternoon: Raising his hands, he blessed them and was lifted up to heaven, alleluia.

Psalm 8
The majesty of the Lord and man’s dignity

The Father gave Christ lordship of creation and made him head of the Church (Ephesians 1:22).

How great is your name, O Lord our God, *
through all the earth!

Your majesty is praised above the heavens; *
on the lips of children and of babes
you have found praise to foil your enemy, *
to silence the foe and the rebel.

When I see the heavens, the work of your hands, *
the moon and the stars which you arranged,
what is man that you should keep him in mind, *
mortal man that you care for him?

Yet you have made him little less than a god; *
with glory and honor you crowned him,
gave him power over the works of your hand, *
put all things under his feet.

All of them, sheep and cattle, *
yes, even the savage beasts,
birds of the air, and fish *
that make their way through the waters.

How great is your name, O Lord our God, *
through all the earth!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Almighty Lord, how wonderful is your name. You have made every creature subject to you; make us worthy to give you service.

Psalm 19A
Praise of the Lord, Creator of all

The dawn from on high shall break on us . . . to guide our feet into the way of peace (Luke 1:78,79).

The heavens proclaim the glory of God *
and the firmament shows forth the work of his hands.
Day unto day takes up the story *
and night unto night makes known the message.

No speech, no word, no voice is heard
yet their span extends through all the earth, *
their words to the utmost bounds of the world.

There he has placed a tent for the sun;
it comes forth like a bridegroom coming from his tent, *
rejoices like a champion to run its course.

At the end of the sky is the rising of the sun;
to the furthest end of the sky is its course. *
There is nothing concealed from its burning heat.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

To enlighten the world, Father, you sent to us your Word as the sun of truth and justice shining upon humankind. Illumine our eyes that we may discern your glory in the many works of your hand.

Psalm 19B
Praise of God who gave us the law of love

You must be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect (Matthew 5:48).

The law of the Lord is perfect, *
it revives the soul.
The rule of the Lord is to be trusted, *
it gives wisdom to the simple.

The precepts of the Lord are right, *
they gladden the heart.
The command of the Lord is clear, *
it gives light to the eyes.

The fear of the Lord is holy, *
abiding for ever.
The decrees of the Lord are truth *
and all of them just.

They are more to be desired than gold, *
than the purest of gold,
and sweeter are they than honey, *
than honey from the comb.

So in them your servant finds instruction; *
great reward is in their keeping.
But who can detect all his errors? *
From hidden faults acquit me.

From presumption restrain your servant *
and let it not rule me.
Then shall I be blameless, *
clean from grave sin.

May the spoken words of my mouth, *
the thoughts of my heart,
win favor in your sight, O Lord, *
my rescuer, my rock!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

May our words in praise of your commandments find favor with you, Lord. May our faith prove we are not slaves, but sons, not so much subjected to your law as sharing your power.

Antiphon

Midmorning: O God, your majesty is praised high above the heavens, alleluia.

Midday: From the heights of heaven he goes forth and to those heights he returns, alleluia.

Midafternoon: Raising his hands, he blessed them and was lifted up to heaven, alleluia.

At the other hours, the complementary psalmody is used.

MIDMORNING


READING
Revelation 1:17c-18

I beheld the Son of Man, who said to me: I am the First and the Last and the One who lives. Once I was dead but now I live—forever and ever. I hold the keys of death and the nether world.

Do not let your heart be troubled, alleluia.
I am going to the Father, alleluia.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

God our Father,
make us joyful in the ascension of your Son Jesus Christ.
May we follow him into the new creation,
for his ascension is our glory and our hope.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Or:

Gladden us with holy joys, almighty God,
and make us rejoice with devout thanksgiving,
for the Ascension of Christ your Son
is our exaltation,
and, where the Head has gone before us in glory,
the Body is called to follow in hope.
Through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Or:

Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that we, who believe that your Only Begotten Son, our Redeemer,
ascended this day to the heavens,
may in spirit dwell already in heavenly realms.
Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Amen.

ACCLAMATION

Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.

MIDDAY


READING
Hebrews 8:1b-3a

We have such a high priest who has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven, minister of the sanctuary and of that true tabernacle set up, not by man, but by the Lord. Now every high priest is appointed to offer gifts and sacrifices.

The Lord in heaven has prepared a royal throne, alleluia.
Christ has ascended on high, alleluia.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

God our Father,
make us joyful in the ascension of your Son Jesus Christ.
May we follow him into the new creation,
for his ascension is our glory and our hope.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Or:

Gladden us with holy joys, almighty God,
and make us rejoice with devout thanksgiving,
for the Ascension of Christ your Son
is our exaltation,
and, where the Head has gone before us in glory,
the Body is called to follow in hope.
Through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Or:

Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that we, who believe that your Only Begotten Son, our Redeemer,
ascended this day to the heavens,
may in spirit dwell already in heavenly realms.
Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Amen.

ACCLAMATION

Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.

MIDAFTERNOON


READING
Colossians 3:1-2

Since you have been raised up in company with Christ, set your heart on what pertains to higher realms where Christ is seated at  God’s right hand. Be intent on things above rather than on things of earth.

Give glory to the King of kings, alleluia.
Sing praise to God, alleluia.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

God our Father,
make us joyful in the ascension of your Son Jesus Christ.
May we follow him into the new creation,
for his ascension is our glory and our hope.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Or:

Gladden us with holy joys, almighty God,
and make us rejoice with devout thanksgiving,
for the Ascension of Christ your Son
is our exaltation,
and, where the Head has gone before us in glory,
the Body is called to follow in hope.
Through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Or:

Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that we, who believe that your Only Begotten Son, our Redeemer,
ascended this day to the heavens,
may in spirit dwell already in heavenly realms.
Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
Amen.

ACCLAMATION

Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.

24 posted on 05/17/2012 2:16:28 AM PDT by markomalley (Nothing emboldens the wicked so greatly as the lack of courage on the part of the good-Pope Leo XIII)
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Vespers

The texts to be used if the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord is celebrated are found after the texts for the ferial day of Easter. Please scroll down to view them.

INTRODUCTION


God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

HYMN


Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
The strife is o’er, the battle done;
Now is the victor’s triumph won:
O let the song of praise be sung.
Alleluia!

Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
On the third morn he rose again,
Glorious in majesty to reign:
O let us swell the joyful strain:
Alleluia!

Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia!
O risen Lord, all praise to thee,
Who from our sins has set us free,
That we may live eternally:
Alleluia!

Tune: Victory 888 with alleluias
Music: G.P. da Palestrina, 1588 adapted with alleluias by W.H. Monk, 1861
Text: Cologne, 1695
Translation: Francis Pott, 1861, alt.

Or:

Christ Jesus lay in death’s strong bands
For our offenses given:
But now at God’s right hand he stands
And brings us life from heaven;
Therefore let us joyful be,
And praise the Father thankfully
With songs of Alleluia.
Alleluia.

How long and bitter was the strife
When life and death contended,
The victory remained with life,
The reign of death was ended:
Stripped of power, no more it reigns,
And empty form alone remains.
Death’s sting is lost for ever.
Alleluia.

So let us keep this festival
To which Our Lord invites us,
The Savior who is joy of all,
The Sun that warms and lights us:
By his grace he shall impart
Eternal sunshine to the heart;
The night of sin has ended.
Alleluia.

Tune: Christ lag in Todesbanden
87.87.787 with alleluia
Music: Walther’s Gesangbuchlein, 1524
Text: Martin Luther, 1483-1546, based on Victimae Paschali laudes
Translation: Richard Massie, 1800-1887, adapted by Anthony G. Petti

Or:

Ad cenam Agni providi,
stolis salutis candidi,
post transitum maris Rubri
Christo canamus principi.

Cuius corpus sanctissimum
in ara crucis torridum,
sed et cruorem roseum
gustando, Deo vivimus.

Protecti paschae vespero
a devastante angelo,
de Pharaonis aspero
sumus erepti imperio.

Iam pascha nostrum Christus est,
agnus occisus innocens;
sinceritatis azyma
qui carnem suam obtulit.

O vera, digna hostia,
per quam franguntur tartara,
captiva plebs redimitur,
redduntur vitae praemia!

Consurgit Christus tumulo,
victor redit de barathro,
tyrannum trudens vinculo
et paradisum reserans.

Esto perenne mentibus
paschale, Iesu, gaudium
et nos renatos gratiae
tuis triumphis aggrega.

Iesu, tibi sit gloria,
qui morte victa praenites,
cum Patre et almo Spiritu,
in sempiterna saecula. Amen.

PSALMODY


Ant. 1 God has appointed him to judge the living and the dead, alleluia.

Psalm 72
The Messiah’s royal power

Opening their treasures, they offered him gifts: gold, frankincense and myrrh (Matthew 2:11).

I

O God, give your judgment to the king, *
to a king’s son your justice,
that he may judge your people in justice *
and your poor in right judgment.

May the mountains bring forth peace for the people *
and the hills, justice.
May he defend the poor of the people
and save the children of the needy *
and crush the oppressor.

He shall endure like the sun and the moon *
from age to age.
He shall descend like rain on the meadow, *
like raindrops on the earth.

In his days justice shall flourish *
and peace till the moon fails.
He shall rule from sea to sea, *
from the Great River to earth’s bounds.

Before him his enemies shall fall, *
his foes lick the dust.
The kings of Tarshish and the sea coasts *
shall pay him tribute.

The kings of Sheba and Seba *
shall bring him gifts.
Before him all kings shall fall prostrate, *
all nations shall serve him.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. God has appointed him to judge the living and the dead, alleluia.

Ant. 2 All the peoples of the earth will be blessed in him, alleluia.

II

For he shall save the poor when they cry *
and the needy who are helpless.
He will have pity on the weak *
and save the lives of the poor.

From oppression he will rescue their lives, *
to him their blood is dear.
Long may he live, *
may the gold of Sheba be given him.
They shall pray for him without ceasing *
and bless him all the day.

May corn be abundant in the land *
to the peaks of the mountains.
May its fruit rustle like Lebanon;
may men flourish in the cities *
like grass on the earth.

May his name be blessed for ever *
and endure like the sun.
Every tribe shall be blessed in him, *
all nations bless his name.

Blessed be the Lord, God of Israel, *
who alone works wonders,
ever blessed his glorious name. *
Let his glory fill the earth.

Amen! Amen!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

We call upon your name, Father, and pronounce it blessed above the earth. Give your people the fullness of peace and justice in your kingdom.

Ant. All the peoples of the earth will be blessed in him, alleluia.

Ant. 3 Christ yesterday and today: he is the same for ever, alleluia.

Canticle: Revelation 11:17-18; 12:10b-12a
The judgment of God

We praise you, the Lord God Almighty, *
who is and who was.
You have assumed your great power, *
you have begun your reign.

The nations have raged in anger, *
but then came your day of wrath
and the moment to judge the dead: *
the time to reward your servants the prophets
and the holy ones who revere you, *
the great and the small alike.

Now have salvation and power come,
the reign of our God and the authority *
of his Anointed One.
For the accuser of our brothers is cast out, *
who night and day accused them before God.

They defeated him by the blood of the Lamb *
and by the word of their testimony;
love for life did not deter them from death.
So rejoice, you heavens, *
and you that dwell therein!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Christ yesterday and today: he is the same for ever, alleluia.

READING

1 Peter 3:18, 22

The reason why Christ died for sins once for all, the just man for the sake of the unjust, was that he might lead you to God. He was put to death insofar as fleshly existence goes, but was given life in the realm of the spirit. He went to heaven and is at God’s right hand, with angelic rulers and powers subjected to him.

RESPONSORY


The disciples rejoiced, alleluia, alleluia.
The disciples rejoiced, alleluia, alleluia.

When they saw the risen Lord,
alleluia, alleluia.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
The disciples rejoiced, alleluia, alleluia.

CANTICLE OF MARY


Ant. Your sorrow will be turned into joy, and that joy no one will take from you, alleluia.

Luke 1:46-55
The soul rejoices in the Lord

My + soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior *
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.

From this day all generations will call me blessed:
the Almighty has done great things for me, *
and holy is his Name.

He has mercy on those who fear him *
in every generation.

He has shown the strength of his arm, *
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

He has cast down the mighty from their thrones, *
and has lifted up the lowly.

He has filled the hungry with good things, *
and the rich he has sent away empty.

He has come to the help of his servant Israel *
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers, *
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Your sorrow will be turned into joy, and that joy no one will take from you, alleluia.

INTERCESSIONS


The Father has established in Christ the foundation of all our hope and the principle of our resurrection. Let us rejoice in Christ, and cry out to him, saying:
King of glory, hear our prayer.

Lord Jesus, through your resurrection you entered the sanctuary of heaven to offer the blood of your own sacrifice,
lead us with you into the glory of the Father.
King of glory, hear our prayer.

Through your resurrection you confirmed the faith of your disciples and sent them out into the world,
make all bishops and priests faithful preachers of the Gospel.
King of glory, hear our prayer.

Through your resurrection you became our peace and reconciliation,
unite the baptized in perfect communion of faith and love.
King of glory, hear our prayer.

Through your resurrection the crippled man was healed at the gate of the temple,
look on the sick and reveal in them the power of your glory.
King of glory, hear our prayer.

You became the firstborn from the dead, the firstfruits of the resurrection,
grant to the dead who hoped in you a share in your glory.
King of glory, hear our prayer.

THE LORD’S PRAYER


(Gathering our prayer and praises into one, let us offer the prayer Christ himself taught us:)

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done on earth
as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

CONCLUDING PRAYER


Father,
may we always give you thanks
for raising Christ our Lord to glory,
because we are his people
and share the salvation he won,
for he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

DISMISSAL


May the Lord + bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.

Where the Ascension is observed, the following is said instead:

INTRODUCTION


God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

HYMN

The head that once was crowned with thorns
Is crowned with glory now:
A royal diadem adorns
The mighty victor’s brow.

The highest place that heav’n affords
Is surely his by right:
The King of kings and Lord of lords,
And heav’n’s eternal light.

The joy he is of all above,
The joy of all below:
To ev’ryone he shows his love,
And grants his name to know.

To them the cross, with all its shame,
With all its grace, is giv’n:
Their name an everlasting name.
Their joy the joy of heav’n.

The cross he bore is life and health,
Though shame and death to him:
His people’s hope, his people’s wealth,
Their everlasting theme.

Melody: St. Magnus (Nottingham) C.M.
Music: Jeremiah Clarke, 1659-1707
Text: Thomas Kelly, 1769-1854, slightly adapted

PSALMODY


Ant. 1 He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father, alleluia.

Psalm 110:1-5, 7
The Messiah, king and priest

Christ’s reign will last until all his enemies are made subject to him (1 Corinthians 15:25).

The Lord’s revelation to my Master: *
“Sit on my right:
your foes I will put beneath your feet.” *
The Lord will yield from Zion
your scepter of power: *
rule in the midst of all your foes.

A prince from the day of your birth
on the holy mountains; *
from the womb before the dawn I begot you.

The Lord has sworn an oath he will not change.
“You are a priest for ever, *
a priest like Melchizedeck of old.”

The Master standing at your right hand *
will shatter kings in the day of his wrath.

He shall drink from the stream by the wayside *
and therefore he shall lift up his head.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Father, we ask you to give us victory and peace. In Jesus Christ, our Lord and King, we are already seated at your right hand. We look forward to praising you in the fellowship of all your saints in our heavenly homeland.

Ant. He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father, alleluia.

Ant. 2 God ascends to shouts of joy, the Lord to the blast of trumpets, alleluia.

Psalm 47
The Lord Jesus is King of all

He is seated at the right hand of the Father, and his kingdom will have no end.

All peoples, clap your hands, *
cry to God with shouts of joy!
For the Lord, the Most High, we must fear, *
great king over all the earth.

He subdues peoples under us *
and nations under our feet.
Our inheritance, our glory, is from him, *
given to Jacob out of love.

God goes up with shouts of joy; *
the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
Sing praise for God, sing praise, *
sing praise to our king, sing praise.

God is king of all the earth, *
sing praise with all your skill.
God is king over the nations; *
God reigns on his holy throne.

The princes of the people are assembled *
with the people of Abraham’s God.
The rulers of the earth belong to God, *
to God who reigns over all.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

God, King of all peoples and all ages, it is your victory we celebrate as we sing with all the skill at our command. Help us always to overcome evil by good, that we may rejoice in your triumph for ever.

Ant. God ascends to shouts of joy, the Lord to the blast of trumpets, alleluia.

Ant. 3 Now the Son of Man has been glorified and God has been glorified in him, alleluia.

Canticle: Revelation 11:17-18; 12:10b-12a
The judgment of God

We praise you, the Lord God Almighty, *
who is and who was.
You have assumed your great power, *
you have begun your reign.

The nations have raged in anger, *
but then came your day of wrath
and the moment to judge the dead: *
The time to reward your servants the prophets
and the holy ones who revere you, *
the great and the small alike.

Now have salvation and power come,
the reign of our God and the authority *
of his Anointed One.
For the accuser of our brothers is cast out, *
who night and day accused them before God.

They defeated him by the blood of the Lamb
and by the word of their testimony; *
love for life did not deter them from death.
So rejoice, you heavens, *
and you that dwell therein!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Now the Son of Man has been glorified and God has been glorified in him, alleluia.

READING

1 Peter 3:18, 22

The reason why Christ died for sins once for all, the just man for the sake of the unjust, was that he might lead you to God. He was put to death insofar as fleshly existence goes, but was given life in the realm of the spirit. He went to heaven and is at God’s right hand, with angelic rulers and powers subjected to him.

RESPONSORY


I am ascending to my Father and your Father, alleluia, alleluia.
I am ascending to my Father and your Father, alleluia, alleluia.

To my God and your God,
alleluia, alleluia.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
I am ascending to my Father and your Father, alleluia, alleluia.

CANTICLE OF MARY


Ant. O Victor King, Lord of power and might, today you have ascended in glory above the heavens. Do not leave us orphans, but send us the Father’s promised gift, the Spirit of truth, alleluia.

Luke 1:46-55
The soul rejoices in the Lord

My + soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior *
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.

From this day all generations will call me blessed:
the Almighty has done great things for me, *
and holy is his Name.

He has mercy on those who fear him *
in every generation.

He has shown the strength of his arm, *
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

He has cast down the mighty from their thrones, *
and has lifted up the lowly.

He has filled the hungry with good things, *
and the rich he has sent away empty.

He has come to the help of his servant Israel *
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers, *
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. O Victor King, Lord of power and might, today you have ascended in glory above the heavens. Do not leave us orphans, but send us the Father’s promised gift, the Spirit of truth, alleluia.

INTERCESSIONS


In joy of spirit let us acclaim Christ, who sits at the right hand of the Father:
Lord Jesus, you are the King of glory.

King of glory, you took with you our frail humanity to be glorified in heaven; remove the sins of the world,
and restore us to the innocence which was ours before the Fall.
Lord Jesus, you are the King of glory.

You came down from heaven on a pilgrimage of love,
grant that we may take the same path to your presence.
Lord Jesus, you are the King of glory.

You promised to draw all things to yourself,
do not allow any one of us to be separated from your body.
Lord Jesus, you are the King of glory.

Where you have gone before us in glory,
may we follow you in mind and heart.
Lord Jesus, you are the King of glory.

True God, we await your coming as our judge,
may we see the vision of your glory and your mercy in company with all the dead.
Lord Jesus, you are the King of glory.

THE LORD’S PRAYER


Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done on earth
as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread;
and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.

CONCLUDING PRAYER


God our Father,
make us joyful in the ascension of your Son Jesus Christ.
May we follow him into the new creation,
for his ascension is our glory and our hope.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

Or:

Gladden us with holy joys, almighty God,
and make us rejoice with devout thanksgiving,
for the Ascension of Christ your Son
is our exaltation,
and, where the Head has gone before us in glory,
the Body is called to follow in hope.
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.

Or:

Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that we, who believe that your Only Begotten Son, our Redeemer,
ascended this day to the heavens,
may in spirit dwell already in heavenly realms.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

DISMISSAL


May the Lord bless + us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.
25 posted on 05/17/2012 2:16:35 AM PDT by markomalley (Nothing emboldens the wicked so greatly as the lack of courage on the part of the good-Pope Leo XIII)
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Compline

The texts to be used if the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord is celebrated are found after the texts for the ferial day of Easter. Please scroll down to view them.

INTRODUCTION


God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

Examination of Conscience

A brief examination of conscience may be made. In the communal celebration of the Office, a Penitential Rite using the formulas of the Mass may be inserted here.

[I confess to almighty God
and to you, my brothers and sisters,
that I have greatly sinned,
in my thoughts and in my words,
in what I have done and in what I have failed to do,

And, striking their breast, they say:

through my fault, through my fault,
through my most grievous fault;

Then they continue:

therefore I ask blessed Mary ever-Virgin,
all the Angels and Saints,
and you, my brothers and sisters,
to pray for me to the Lord our God.

The absolution by the Priest follows:

May almighty God have mercy on us,
forgive us our sins,
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen..]

HYMN

At the Lamb’s high feast we sing
Praise to our victorious King,
Who has washed us in the tide
Flowing from his wounded side;
Praise the Lord, whose love divine
Gives his sacred blood for wine,
Gives his body for the feast,
Christ the victim, Christ the priest.

Where the Paschal blood is poured,
Death’s dark angel sheathes his sword;
Israel’s host in triumph go
Through the waves that drown the foe.
Christ the Lamb whose blood was shed,
Paschal victim, Paschal bread;
Let us with a fervent love
Taste the manna from above.

Mighty Victim from on high,
Pow’rs of hell now vanquished lie;
Sin is conquered in the fight:
You have brought us life and light;
Your resplendent banners wave,
You have risen from the grave;
Christ has opened Paradise,
And in him all men shall rise.

Easter triumph, Easter joy,
Sin alone can this destroy;
Souls form sin and death set free
Glory in their liberty.
Hymns of glory, hymns of praise
Father unto you we raise;
Risen Lord, for joy we sing;
Let our hymns through heaven ring.

Tune: Salzburg 77.77 D
Music: Jacob Hintze, 1622-1702
Text: Ad regias Agni dapes
Translation: Robert Campbell, 1814-1868, adapted by Geoffrey Laycock

Or:

We praise you, Father, for your gifts
Of dusk and nightfall over earth,
Foreshadowing the mystery
Of death that leads to endless day.

Within your hands we rest secure;
In quiet sleep our strength renew;
Yet give your people hearts that wake
In love to you, unsleeping Lord.

Your glory may we ever seek
In rest, as in activity,
Until its fullness is revealed,
O source of life, O Trinity.

Melody: Te lucis ante terminum (plainchant) L.M.
Music: Anonymous, Gregorian
Text: West Malling Abbey

PSALMODY


Ant. In you, my God, my body will rest in hope, alleluia.

Psalm 16
God is my portion, my inheritance

The Father raised up Jesus from the dead and broke the bonds of death (Acts 2:24).

Preserve me, God, I take refuge in you.
I say to the Lord: “You are my God. *
My happiness lies in you alone.”

He has put into my heart a marvelous love *
for the faithful ones who dwell in his land.
Those who choose other gods increase their sorrows.
Never will I offer their offerings of blood. *
Never will I take their name upon my lips.

O Lord, it is you who are my portion and cup; *
it is you yourself who are my prize.
The lot marked out for me is my delight: *
welcome indeed the heritage that falls to me!

I will bless the Lord who gives me counsel, *
who even at night directs my heart.
I keep the Lord ever in my sight: *
since he is at my right hand, I shall stand firm.

And so my heart rejoices, my soul is glad; *
even my body shall rest in safety.
For you will not leave my soul among the dead, *
nor let your beloved know decay.

You will show me the path of life,
the fullness of joy in your presence, *
at your right hand happiness for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. In you, my God, my body will rest in hope, alleluia.

READING

1 Thessalonians 5:23

May the God of peace make you perfect in holiness. May he preserve you whole and entire, spirit, soul, and body, irreproachable at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

RESPONSORY


Into your hands, Lord, I commend my spirit, alleluia, alleluia.
Into your hands, Lord, I commend my spirit, alleluia, alleluia.

You have redeemed us, Lord God of truth.
Alleluia, alleluia.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
Into your hands, Lord, I commend my spirit, alleluia, alleluia.

CANTICLE OF SIMEON


Ant. Protect us, Lord, as we stay awake; watch over us as we sleep, that awake, we may keep watch with Christ, and asleep, rest in his peace, alleluia.

Luke 2:29-32
Christ is the light of the nations and the glory of Israel

Lord, + now you let your servant go in peace; *
your word has been fulfilled:

my own eyes have seen the salvation *
which you have prepared in the sight of every people:

a light to reveal you to the nations *
and the glory of your people Israel.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Protect us, Lord, as we stay awake; watch over us as we sleep, that awake, we may keep watch with Christ, and asleep, rest in his peace, alleluia.

CONCLUDING PRAYER


Let us pray.

Lord God,
send peaceful sleep
to refresh our tired bodies.
May your help always renew us
and keep us strong in your service.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

BLESSING


May the all-powerful Lord
grant us a restful night
and a peaceful death.
Amen.

Antiphon or song in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Queen of heaven, rejoice, alleluia.
The Son whom you merited to bear, alleluia,
has risen as he said, alleluia.
Pray for us to God, alleluia.

Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary, alleluia!
For the Lord has truly risen, alleluia!

Or:

Regina caeli, laetare, alleluia,
quia quem meruisti portare, alleluia,
resurrexit sicut dixit, alleluia;
ora pro nobis Deum, alleluia.

Gaude et laetare, Virgo Maria, alleluia.
Quia surrexit Dominus vere, alleluia.

Or:

Hail, holy Queen, mother of mercy,
our life, our sweetness, and our hope.
To you do we cry,
poor banished children of Eve.
To you do we send up our sighs
mourning and weeping in this vale of tears.
Turn then, most gracious advocate,
your eyes of mercy toward us,
and after this exile
show us the blessed fruit of your womb, Jesus.
O clement, O loving,
O sweet Virgin Mary.

Or:

Hail Mary, full of grace,
the Lord is with you!
Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
pray for us sinners,
now and at the hour of our death.

Or:

Salve, Regina, mater misericordiae;
 vita, dulcedo et spes nostra, salve,
Ad te clamamus, exsules filii Evae.
Ad te suspiramus, gementes et flentes
 in hac lacrimarum valle.

Eia ergo, advocata nostra,
 illos tuos misericordes occulos
 ad nos converte.
Et Iesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui,
 nobis post hoc exilium ostende.
O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Virgo Maria.

Or:

Loving mother of the Redeemer,
gate of heaven, star of the sea,
assist your people who have fallen yet strive to rise again.
To the wonderment of nature you bore your Creator,
yet remained a virgin after as before.
You who received Gabriel’s joyful greeting,
have pity on us poor sinners.


For the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord:

INTRODUCTION


God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

Examination of Conscience

A brief examination of conscience may be made. In the communal celebration of the Office, a Penitential Rite using the formulas of the Mass may be inserted here.

[I confess to almighty God
and to you, my brothers and sisters,
that I have greatly sinned,
in my thoughts and in my words,
in what I have done and in what I have failed to do,

And, striking their breast, they say:

through my fault, through my fault,
through my most grievous fault;

Then they continue:

therefore I ask blessed Mary ever-Virgin,
all the Angels and Saints,
and you, my brothers and sisters,
to pray for me to the Lord our God.

The absolution by the Priest follows:

May almighty God have mercy on us,
forgive us our sins,
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.]

HYMN

At the Lamb’s high feast we sing
Praise to our victorious King,
Who has washed us in the tide
Flowing from his wounded side;
Praise the Lord, whose love divine
Gives his sacred blood for wine,
Gives his body for the feast,
Christ the victim, Christ the priest.

Where the Paschal blood is poured,
Death’s dark angel sheathes his sword;
Israel’s host in triumph go
Through the waves that drown the foe.
Christ the Lamb whose blood was shed,
Paschal victim, Paschal bread;
Let us with a fervent love
Taste the manna from above.

Mighty Victim from on high,
Pow’rs of hell now vanquished lie;
Sin is conquered in the fight:
You have brought us life and light;
Your resplendent banners wave,
You have risen from the grave;
Christ has opened Paradise,
And in him all men shall rise.

Easter triumph, Easter joy,
Sin alone can this destroy;
Souls form sin and death set free
Glory in their liberty.
Hymns of glory, hymns of praise
Father unto you we raise;
Risen Lord, for joy we sing;
Let our hymns through heaven ring.

Tune: Salzburg 77.77 D
Music: Jacob Hintze, 1622-1702
Text: Ad regias Agni dapes
Translation: Robert Campbell, 1814-1868, adapted by Geoffrey Laycock

Or:

God who made the earth and heaven,
    Darkness and light;
You the day for work have giv’n
    For rest the night.
May your angel guards defend us,
Slumber sweet your mercy send us,
Holy dreams and hope attend us,
    All through the night.

And when morn again shall call us
    To run life’s way,
May we still whate’er befall us,
    Your will obey.
From the pow’r of evil hide us,
In the narrow pathway guide us,
Never be your smile denied us
    All through the day.

Guard us waking, guard us sleeping,
    And, when we die,
May we in your mighty keeping
    All peaceful lie.
When the last dread call shall wake us,
Then O Lord, do not forsake us,
But to reign in glory take us
  With you on high.

Melody: Ar Hyd Y Nos 84.84.88.84
Music: Welsh Carol
Text: st 1 Reginald Heber, 1783-1826; st. 2 William Mercer, 1811-1876; st. 3 Richard Whately, 1787-1863

PSALMODY

Ant. Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.

Psalm 91
Safe in God’s sheltering care


I have given you the power to tread upon serpents and scorpions (Luke 10:19).

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High *
and abides in the shade of the Almighty
says to the Lord: “My refuge, *
my stronghold, my God in whom I trust!”

It is he who will free you from the snare *
of the fowler who seeks to destroy you;
he will conceal you with his pinions *
and under his wings you will find refuge.

You will not fear the terror of the night *
nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the plague that prowls in the darkness *
nor the scourge that lays waste at noon.

A thousand may fall at your side, *
ten thousand fall at your right,
you, it will never approach; *
his faithfulness is buckler and shield.

Your eyes have only to look *
to see how the wicked are repaid,
you who have said: “Lord, my refuge!” *
and have made the Most High your dwelling.

Upon you no evil shall fall, *
no plague approach where you dwell.
For you has he commanded his angels, *
to keep you in all your ways.

They shall bear you upon their hands *
lest you strike your foot against a stone.
On the lion and the viper you will tread *
and trample the young lion and the dragon.

Since he clings to me in love, I will free him; *
protect him for he knows my name.
When he calls I shall answer: “I am with you,” *
I will save him in distress and give him glory.

With length of life I will content him; *
I shall let him see my saving power.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.

READING

Revelation 22:4-5

They shall see the Lord face to face and bear his name on their foreheads. The night shall be no more. They will need no light from lamps or the sun, for the Lord God shall give them light, and they shall reign forever

RESPONSORY

Into your hands, Lord, I commend my spirit, alleluia, alleluia.
Into your hands, Lord, I commend my spirit, alleluia, alleluia.

You have redeemed us, Lord God of truth.
Alleluia, alleluia.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
Into your hands, Lord, I commend my spirit, alleluia, alleluia.

GOSPEL CANTICLE


Ant. Protect us, Lord, as we stay awake; watch over us as we sleep, that awake, we may keep watch with Christ, and asleep, rest in his peace, alleluia.

Luke 2:29-32
Christ is the light of the nations and the glory of Israel


Lord, + now you let your servant go in peace; *
your word has been fulfilled:

my own eyes have seen the salvation *
which you have prepared in the sight of every people:

a light to reveal you to the nations *
and the glory of your people Israel.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Protect us, Lord, as we stay awake; watch over us as we sleep, that awake, we may keep watch with Christ, and asleep, rest in his peace, alleluia.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

Lord, we beg you to visit this house
and banish from it
all the deadly power of the enemy.
May your holy angels dwell here
to keep us in your peace,
and may your blessing be upon us always.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
Amen.

BLESSING


May the all-powerful Lord
grant us a restful night
and a peaceful death.
Amen.

Antiphon or song in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Queen of heaven, rejoice, alleluia.
The Son whom you merited to bear, alleluia,
has risen as he said, alleluia.
Pray for us to God, alleluia.

Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary, alleluia!
For the Lord has truly risen, alleluia!

Or:

Regina caeli, laetare, alleluia,
quia quem meruisti portare, alleluia,
resurrexit sicut dixit, alleluia;
ora pro nobis Deum, alleluia.

Gaude et laetare, Virgo Maria, alleluia.
Quia surrexit Dominus vere, alleluia.

Or:

Hail, holy Queen, mother of mercy,
our life, our sweetness, and our hope.
To you do we cry,
poor banished children of Eve.
To you do we send up our sighs
mourning and weeping in this vale of tears.
Turn then, most gracious advocate,
your eyes of mercy toward us,
and after this exile
show us the blessed fruit of your womb, Jesus.
O clement, O loving,
O sweet Virgin Mary.

Or:

Hail Mary, full of grace,
the Lord is with you!
Blessed are you among women,
and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
pray for us sinners,
now and at the hour of our death.

Or:

Salve, Regina, mater misericordiae;
 vita, dulcedo et spes nostra, salve,
Ad te clamamus, exsules filii Evae.
Ad te suspiramus, gementes et flentes
 in hac lacrimarum valle.

Eia ergo, advocata nostra,
 illos tuos misericordes occulos
 ad nos converte.
Et Iesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui,
 nobis post hoc exilium ostende.
O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Virgo Maria.

Or:

Loving mother of the Redeemer,
gate of heaven, star of the sea,
assist your people who have fallen yet strive to rise again.
To the wonderment of nature you bore your Creator,
yet remained a virgin after as before.
You who received Gabriel’s joyful greeting,
have pity on us poor sinners.

26 posted on 05/17/2012 2:16:44 AM PDT by markomalley (Nothing emboldens the wicked so greatly as the lack of courage on the part of the good-Pope Leo XIII)
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To: markomalley

yw


27 posted on 05/17/2012 2:57:44 AM PDT by Lower55
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To: All
The Ascension of the Lord

The Ascension of the Lord
Feast Day
Thursday after the sixth Sunday of Easter or on the seventh Sunday of Easter

Christ in Glory
Detail from Disputa dei Sacramento - The Triumph of the Christian Faith
Raphael (ca 1508) Stanza della Segnatura, Apostolic Palace, Vatican

Readings - Hymn

The feast of the Ascension is celebrated on the fortieth day after Easter Sunday*, commemorating the Ascension of Christ into Heaven and His completion of the work of our redemption. The liturgy on this day celebrates the entry of Christ into heaven with our human nature glorified, and the pledge of our glorification with Him. In the past, processions outside the church were held on this day to imitate Christ's leading the Apostles out of the city to the Mount of Olives, and to commemorate the entry of Christ into heaven.

* In some dioceses of the United States, this feast is celebrated on the Seventh Sunday of Easter. See local liturgical calendar.

Readings

This high priest of ours is one who has taken His seat in heaven, on the right hand of that throne where God sits in majesty, monistering now in the sanctuary, in that true tabernacle which the Lord, not man, has set up. After all, it is ther very function of a pirest to offer gift and sacrifice.

Hebrews 8:1b:3a
Feast of the Ascension - Prayers for Midday

 

Collect at the Vigil Mass:

O God, whose Son today ascended to the heavens
as the Apostles looked on,
grant, we pray, that, in accordance with his promise,
we may be worthy for him to live with us always on earth,
and we with him in heaven.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. +Amen.

Collect:

Gladden us with holy joys, almighty God,
and make us rejoice with devout thanksgiving,
for the Ascension of Christ your Son
is our exaltation,
and, where the Head has gone before in glory,
the Body is called to follow in hope.
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.

or

Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that we, who believe that your Only Begotten Son, our Redeemer,
ascended this day dwell already in heavenly realms.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. +Amen.

First Reading for Mass: Acts of the Apostles 1:1-11 Year A,B,C

In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, until the day when He was taken up, after He had given commandment through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom He had chosen. To them He presented Himself alive after His passion by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days, and speaking of the kingdom of God. And while staying with them He charged them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, He said, "you heard from Me, for John baptized with water, but before many days you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit."

So when they had come together, they asked Him, "Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?" He said to them, "It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has fixed by His own authority. But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witness in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth." And when He had said this, as they were looking on, He was lifted up, and a cloud took Him out of their sight. And while they were gazing into heaven as He went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw Him go into heaven."

Second Reading: Ephesians 1:17-23 Year A,B,C

Jesus came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near; for through Him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure is joined together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are built into it for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.

Year B Optional Readings: Eph 4:1-13 or Eph 4:1-7, 11-13
Year C Optional Readings: Heb 9:24-28 - 10:19-23

Year A
Gospel Reading: Matthew 28:16-20

Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw Him they worshipped Him; but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age."

Year B
Gospel Reading: Mark 16:15-20

Jesus said to His disciples, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to the whole creation. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: in My name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover."
So then the Lord Jesus, after He had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went forth and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the message by the signs that attended it. Amen.

Year C
Gospel Reading: Luke 24:46-53

Jesus said to His disciples, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I send the promise of My Father upon you; but stay in the city, until you are clothed with power from on high."

Then He led them out as far as Bethany, and lifting up His hands He blessed them. While He blessed them, He parted from them, and was carried up into heaven. And they worshipped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple blessing God.

(Scripture: RSV-CE Ignatius Bible)

Hymn for the Ascension

Hail the day that sees Him rise

Hail the day that sees Him rise, Alleluia!
Glorious to His native skies: Alleluia!
Christ, awhile to mortals giv'n, Alleluia!
Enters now the highest heav'n! Alleluia

There the glorious triumph waits; Alleluia!
Lift your heads, eternal gates! Alleluia!
Wide unfold the radiant scene; Alleluia!
Take the King of glory in! Alleluia!

See! He lifts His hands above, Alleluia!
See! He shows the prints of love: Alleluia!
Hark! His gracious lips bestow, Alleluia!
Blessings on His Church below. Alleluia!

Lord, beyond our mortal signt, Alleluia!
Raise our hearts to reach Thy height, Alleluia!
There Thy face unclouded see, Alleluia!
Find our heav'n of heav'ns in Thee. Alleluia!

Text: Charles Wesley (1707-88); Melody: Robert Williams (1781-1821)


28 posted on 05/17/2012 7:41:01 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Please Let us Celebrate Ascension on Thursday Again
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The Ascension of Christ and His Glorified Existence

29 posted on 05/17/2012 7:49:36 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All


Information:
St. Paschal Baylon
Feast Day: May 17
Born: 1540, Torrehermosa, Aragon
Died: 17 May 1592
Canonized: October 16, 1690 by Alexander VIII
Major Shrine: Royal Chapel in Villareal
Patron of: Patron of Eucharistic congresses and Eucharistic associations


30 posted on 05/17/2012 7:53:41 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Interactive Saints for Kids

St. Paschal Baylon

Feast Day: May 17
Born: 1540 :: Died: 1592

Paschal was born at Torre Hermosa, in Aragon (which today is Spain). His pious parents Martin Baylon and Elizabeth Jubera were peasants. From the time he was seven, he worked as a shepherd. His parents could not afford to send him to school but he taught himself to read and write by asking everyone he met to help him. He did this so that he could read from holy books and he often whispered prayers during the day as he took care of the sheep.

When he was twenty-four, Paschal became a Franciscan brother. The other friars liked him. Paschal was easy to get along with and kind. They noticed that he often did the most unpleasant and hardest jobs that no one wanted to do.

He did hard penances that were even stricter than their rules. Yet he was a happy person. When he was a shepherd, he had wished he could be in church praying to Jesus. Now his wish had come true. He loved to keep Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament company. He was also very happy to serve at Mass.

St. Paschal's two great loves were the Holy Eucharist and the Blessed Mother. Every day Paschal prayed the Rosary with great love. He also wrote beautiful prayers to our Heavenly Mother.

Out of some scraps of paper, St. Paschal made himself a little notebook. In it, he wrote down some beautiful thoughts and prayers. After he died, his superior showed the little book to the local archbishop who reading it said, "These simple souls are stealing heaven from us!"

Paschal died in 1592 at the age of fifty-two.

Reflection: How can we grow closer to Jesus in the Eucharist and to Mary? We can make a special visit to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and ask Mary to help us be faithful to her Son.


31 posted on 05/17/2012 8:00:16 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
 
Catholic
Almanac:
Thursday, May 17
Liturgical Color: White

Today is the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord. We celebrated Christ's resurrection 40 days ago, and now celebrate His return to heaven. The Paschal Candle, lit during Mass since Easter, is extinguished after the Gospel today.

32 posted on 05/17/2012 3:21:51 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Catholic Culture

Daily Readings for: May 17, 2012
(Readings on USCCB website)

Collect: O God, whose Son today ascended to the heavens as the Apostles looked on, grant, we pray, that, in accordance with his promise, we may be worthy for him to live with us always on earth, and we with him in heaven. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.


O God, who made your people partakers in your redemption, grant, we pray, that we may perpetually render thanks for the Resurrection of the Lord. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Easter: May 17th

Ascension of Our Lord or Thursday of the Sixth Week of Easter

Old Calendar: Ascension of Our Lord: St. Paschal Baylon, confessor

The ecclesiastical provinces of Boston, Hartford, New York, Newark, Omaha, and Philadelphia have retained the celebration of the Ascension on the proper Thursday, while all other provinces have transferred this solemnity to the Seventh Sunday of Easter, May 20. If transferred today is observed as an Easter Weekday. The following readings are used: Acts 18:1-8/Jn 16:16-20 (294).

According to the 1962 Missal of Bl. John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, today is the feast of St. Paschal Baylon, who lived and died in the kingdom of Aragon, Spain. He spent his early years as a shepherd and often gave religious instruction to the shepherds on the hills of Aragon. At the age of twenty-four he entered the Franciscan Order and embraced the humble, austere life of a lay brother. He was noted for his devotion to the Holy Eucharist. Pope Leo XIII declared him protector or all Eucharistic Congresses and works. His feast is no longer on the calendar in the United States.


St. Paschal Baylon
Paschal Baylon (named after the day of his birth and death: Pentecost Sunday—Pascha Pentekostes) was a simple, pious shepherd boy who later became an ardent spiritual son of St. Francis and the heavenly patron of adorers of the Most Blessed Sacrament. He belongs to that illustrious circle of saints who, by heroic holiness of life, refurbished the Church's crown that had been desecrated by the heretics of the sixteenth century. He hailed from the Spanish section of Valencia and died at the age of 52. As he lay dead upon the bier, he opened and closed his eyes twice when the sacred species were elevated at the consecration. Leo XIII declared him the heavenly patron of all Eucharistic leagues and societies.

One day Paschal heard the bells of a convent announce the approaching consecration at Mass. Such an ardent longing for God overcame him that, prompted by yearning and love, he involuntarily cried out: "O God, most worthy of all adoration, please let me see You!" Hardly had he uttered the prayer when a glowing star appeared in the sky. As he watched, the heavens opened; the star disappeared and was replaced by a chalice with the Host, flanked by two adoring angels. Christian art has selected this vision to show his chief virtue, viz., love for the most holy Eucharist.

Excerpted from The Church's Year of Grace, Pius Parsch

Patron: Cooks; Eucharistic congresses and organizations (proclaimed by Pope Leo XIII); Obado, Bulacan, Phillipines.

Symbols: In adoration before a vision of the Host.

Things to Do:


33 posted on 05/17/2012 3:34:03 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
The Word Among Us

Meditation: Acts 18:1-8

“Greet Prisca and Aquila.” (Romans 16:3)

With all of its sermons, conver­sions, miracles, and travels, the Book of Acts gives us a bird’s eye view of the early church. It doesn’t give us the full stories of all the heroes and heroines of that first generation of Christians. To paraphrase what John said about his Gospel, “there wouldn’t be enough books in the entire world” to write down all those stories (John 21:25)!

Think, for example, about Barnabas. He was instrumental in starting Paul on his apostolic career, introducing him to the Apostles and journeying with him for a time (Acts 9:27; 13:1-3). But we don’t hear much more about him after that point.

Think, too, about Priscilla and Aquila. We meet them in today’s reading, recently arrived in Corinth after being ordered out of Italy by the emperor Claudius. They welcomed Paul into their home and worked beside him during his stay. Later on, they meet Apollos, realize he is not teaching the full Gospel, and invite him into their home to train him more fully. Later in the New Testament, we learn that they trav­eled with Paul, and on at least one occasion risked their lives for him (Romans 16:3-4). They were a gener­ous couple, opening their home to church services and constantly nur­turing new believers in the Lord (1 Corinthians 16:19).

Finally, think of the many people whose names are listed at the end of many of Paul’s letters—people like Epaenetus, Mary, Andronicus, Junias, Ampliatus, Urbanus, Stachys, Apelles, Aristobulus, Herodion, and Narcissus (Romans 16:3-11).

So many names—so many peo­ple—so many stories! And each one of them was essential to the growth and success of God’s work. And so are we! There is no such thing as nonessential support staff in the kingdom of God. There are no second-tier builders of the church—at least not in God’s eyes. He has a perfect plan for each of us. We will make a difference in the world as we embrace the calling God has for us. Regardless of whether or not we are in the spotlight, our faith­fulness is crucial. The kingdom of God depends on it!

“Holy Spirit, thank you for all the heroes of the faith! And thank you for calling me to be a hero, too. Help me to follow your lead.”

Psalm 98:1-4; John 16:16-20


34 posted on 05/17/2012 4:30:01 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
A Christian Pilgrim

THE ASCENSION OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST

(A biblical refection on the SOLEMNITY OF THE ASCENSION, THURSDAY, 17 May 2012) 

First Reading: Acts 1:1-11 

Psalms: Ps 47:2-3,6-9; Second Reading: Eph 1:17-23; Gospel Reading: Mk 16:15-20 

The Scripture Text

In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, until the day when He was taken up, after He had given commandment through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom He had chosen. To them He presented Himself alive after His passion by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days, and speaking of the Kingdom of God. And while staying with them He charged them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, He said, “you heard from Me, for John baptized with water, but before many days you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”

So when they had come together, they asked Him, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has fixed by His own authority. But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth.” And when He had said this, as they were looking on, He was lifted up, and a cloud took Him out of their sight. And while they were gazing into heaven as He went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw Him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:1-11 RSV) 

A key description of today’s liturgy is found in the reading from the “Acts of the Apostles”: “He was lifted up, and a cloud took Him out of their sight” (Acts 1:9). Seven weeks previously, Jesus had died and was buried. Easter saw Him raised from the grave, and today He ascends from the earth to the right hand of the Father.

The venerated spot where this spectacular even took place is on top of a mountain populated by many ancient olive trees. It is aptly named the Mount of Olives. This lofty area which offers a magnificent view overlooking the city of Jerusalem, was frequented by Jesus as a place of prayer. It was here that He had taught the apostles to pray the Our Father. His terrible agony in the garden occurred nearby – in Gethsemaneat the base of the mountain.

Today a small chapel stand on top of the Mount of Olives with a single narrow door which causes most people to bow then entering. The roof is a large white dome that immediately pulls one’s attention toward the heavens. An indented footprint in solid rock is clearly evident, which tradition says is the exact spot where Jesus stood before ascending back to His Father. Two footprints were present formerly, but one was removed to be relocated in another sacred shrine.

The Mount of Olives is a sacred place of lingering glory, for the Ascension is Jesus’ victory celebration over sin and death. It is another convincing proof of the legitimacy of His title, “Lord.” Ascension day commemorates a victory for Jesus and a promise for us that we too can eventually triumph over all that binds us to earth.

It is significant how the Bible describes Jesus in the presence of the apostles, just before the Ascension. He gave His everlasting blessing and reminded them that His farewell gift was a message of peace. Jesus also encouraged them to have enduring faith, to spread His sacred Kingdom and told them to let their lives be ruled by the Holy Spirit, Whom He promised soon to send.

Today may be called a farewell to His terrestrial friends and His way of life on this earth. Although good-byes are normally difficult to face, this one was certainly lightened by their collective hope of a future reunion with the Lord in His eternal Kingdom. In the meantime they would keep in touch through faith and prayer.

We too believe that the ascended Lord still continues to keep in touch with us as we meditate on His precious words in scripture, receive His life-renewing sacraments and try to discern His will in our daily lives. We can especially find Him in our sisters and brothers. In loving and serving them we are doing the same for Him, just as truly as if He were visibly present to us.

Short Prayer: Heavenly Father, make us joyful in the ascension of Your Son Jesus Christ. May we follow Him into the new creation, for His ascension is our glory and our hope. We pray this in the most precious name of Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord and Savior, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.


35 posted on 05/17/2012 4:41:22 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Insight Scoop

The Image of Man Has Been Raised Up: On the Feast of the Ascension of the Lord



The Image of Man Has Been Raised Up: On the Feast of the Ascension of the Lord | Carl E. Olson 

"You ascended into glory, O Christ our God, and You delighted the disciples with the promise of the Holy Spirit. Through this blessing, they were assured that You are the Son of God, the Redeemer of the World."
Troparion for the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, Feast of the Ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ

"Christ's Ascension is therefore not a spectacle for the disciples but an event into which they themselves are included. It is a sursum corda, a movement toward the above into which we are all called. It tells us that man can live toward the above, that he is capable of attaining heights. More: the altitude that alone is suited to the dimensions of being human is the altitude of God himself. Man can live at this height, and only from this height do we properly understand him. The image of man has been raised up, but we have the freedom to tear it down or to let ourselves be raised."
Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, from Images of Hope: Meditations On Major Feasts (Ignatius Press, 2006)


Readings:

• Acts 1:1-11
• Psa. 47:2-3, 6-7, 8-9
• Eph. 1:17-23 or Heb. 9:24-28; 10:19-23
• Lk 24:46-53

"As he blessed them he parted from them and was taken up to heaven." (Lk 24:51)

With these simple, matter-of-fact words, Luke describes the Ascension of Jesus, expressed even more concisely in the Creed: "He ascended into heaven." This event is so important for Luke that the Acts of the Apostles opens with a description of the same event. As the disciples looked on, Luke records, Jesus "was lifted up, and a cloud took him from their sight" (Acts 1:9). Mark's account, heard today, is equally direct and succinct: "So then the Lord Jesus, after he spoke to them, was taken up into heaven and took his seat at the right hand of God" (Mk. 16:19).

This dramatic moment has been celebrated in the Church on the fortieth day after Easter since the earliest centuries. Some of the Church Fathers, including Augustine, said that the feast had been observed since the time of the apostles, although the earliest evidence of its celebration dates to the fifth century. In the Latin Rite in the United States the Feast of the Ascension is one of six solemnities, the others being the solemnities of Mary, Mother of God (January 1); the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (August 15); All Saints (November 1), the Immaculate Conception (December 8), and the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ (December 25).

Despite being a solemnity and a holy day of obligation, the Feast of the Ascension is sometimes completely overlooked or not given much attention. Ask Catholics what is the significance of the Feast and answers aren't always immediate. The rather mysterious nature of the Feast is heightened in some ecclesiastical provinces by its transference from the sixth Thursday of Easter to the following Sunday. [1] In a way, the Solemnity bears a resemblance to the sacrament of Confirmation, the exact meaning of which is not always understood well and suffers for not being more clearly explained and comprehended.

This occasional murkiness is unfortunate because the Ascension is such a joyful event in the work and life of Jesus Christ, as well as being a vital reality in the ongoing life and mission of the Church. To appreciate this joy and vitality we should keep in mind what the Catechism of the Catholic Church states about the liturgical calendar: The Church, "in the course of the year, . . . unfolds the whole mystery of Christ from his Incarnation and Nativity through his Ascension, to Pentecost and the expectation of the blessed hope of the coming of the Lord" (CCC, 1194).

Hinted at here are revealing parallels between the Incarnation and the Ascension and between the Nativity and Pentecost. In the Incarnation the eternal Son of God took on human nature in order to save mankind. By the power of the Holy Spirit, divinity and humanity were united in one Person; the Word became flesh (Jn 1:14) and lowered Himself to the level of dust and death. The Nativity is the physical, outward revelation of this reality: the Christ Child is born and history and the world are never the same.

At the Ascension the crucified, risen Son of God returns to His Father. Having descended to dusty earth, He now returns to heavenly glory. Having conquered death, He ascends to eternal life. But He returns to the right hand of the Father not just as the Word, but as the Incarnate Word. The doors of heaven are now open and humanity can now approach the throne room of God, the way having been paved by the life, death, and resurrection of the God-man. Pentecost, finally, is the manifestation of the God-man's Church, which is both human and divine. The Church was revealed to the world on that day—fifty days after Easter—by the power of the Holy Spirit.

All of this theology is nice enough, but what does it mean for us? It means the Feast of the Ascension is a celebration of salvation won. The Catholic Encyclopedia notes that "in the Eastern Church this feast was known as analepsis, the taking up, and also as the episozomene, the salvation, denoting that by ascending into His glory Christ completed the work of our redemption." The tendency is often to think of the Resurrection as the culmination of Jesus' salvific work, but it is the Ascension that places the final stamp of approval on the sacrificial and victorious work of our Savior. This is beautifully expressed in the first chapter of Paul's epistle to the Ephesians:

May the eyes of your hearts be enlightened, that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call, what are the riches of glory in his inheritance among the holy ones, and what is the surpassing greatness of his power for us who believe, in accord with the exercise of his great might: which he worked in Christ, raising him from the dead and seating him at his right hand in the heavens ... (Eph. 1:17-20).

Now that the Incarnate Son of God has ascended into heaven and sits in the throne room of God, mankind can follow. United to the Son through baptism and deepening communion with Him through reception of the Holy Eucharist and the other sacraments, the hope of heaven is ours.

"The ascension of Christ is our elevation," declared Leo the Great in a sermon on the Ascension, "Hope for the body is also invited where the glory of the Head preceded us. Let us exult, dearly beloved, with worthy joy and be glad with a holy thanksgiving. Today we not only are established as possessors of paradise, but we have even penetrated the heights of the heavens in Christ." Where the sin of the first Adam closed the gates of Paradise, the righteousness of the new Adam has opened them wide.

Jesus promised His disciples that He would prepare a place for them (Jn. 14). Because of the Ascension, we know He has prepared a place for those who are His. Because of the Ascension, we have the hope of His return and of our future passage into glory. "The Ascension, then," Pope John Paul II explained in May 2000, "is a Trinitarian epiphany which indicates the goal to which personal and universal history is hastening. Even if our mortal body dissolves into the dust of the earth, our whole redeemed self is directed on high to God, following Christ as our guide."

Our Guide has come, died, rose from the dead, and ascended into heaven. Let us celebrate the Feast!

ENDNOTES:

[1] One question that often arises about the Feast of the Ascension is why do some provinces celebrate the solemnity on the following Sunday and not on the sixth Thursday of Easter? The short answer is that the bishops of those regions believe that it makes sense pastorally to do so.

The website for the United States Council of Catholic Bishops has a page explaining some of the situation based on the norms of the Code of Canon Law. It notes that Sunday and the six solemnities referred to above are holy days of obligation. It then quotes Canon 1246§2: "However, the conference of bishops can abolish certain holy days of obligation or transfer them to a Sunday with prior approval of the Apostolic See." Further on, the page has the following explanation:

"In accord with the provisions of canon 1246§2 of the Code of Canon Law . . . the National Conference of Catholic Bishops of the United States decrees that the Ecclesiastical Provinces of the United States may transfer the Solemnity of the Ascension of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ from Thursday of the Sixth Week of Easter to the Seventh Sunday of Easter according to the following procedure.

"The decision of each Ecclesiastical Province to transfer the Solemnity of the Ascension is to be made by the affirmative vote of two-thirds of the bishops of the respective Ecclesiastical Province. The decision of the Ecclesiastical Province should be communicated to the Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments and to the President of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops. [dated August 6, 1999, Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord]."

A reason often given for moving the day of the Feast from Thursday to Sunday is that many more Catholics (who are usually working on weekdays) can attend the holy day of obligation. It has also been suggested that this will allow priests, liturgists, and musicians to devote more time to prepare for the Feast of the Ascension.

(This article was originally published in 2004 in Our Sunday Visitor in a slightly different form.)


36 posted on 05/17/2012 4:55:07 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Vultus Christi

When weakness becomes true prayer

 on May 17, 2012 9:04 AM |
Pentecoste_clip_image001_0002.jpg

Yesterday at the Wednesday General Audience, our Holy Father offered this profound and comforting teaching on prayer in the Letters of Saint Paul. I cannot begin to say how much the Holy Father's words went straight to my heart. He addressed struggles in prayer that I have known and that many souls familiar to me have also known. This text is a gift for the first day of the Pentecost Novena.

Dear brothers and sisters,

The Prayer of Saint Paul

In the last catecheses we reflected on prayer in the Acts of the Apostles. Today I would like to begin to speak about prayer in the Letters of St. Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles. First, I would like to note that it is not by chance that his Letters are introduced and conclude with expressions of prayer: at the beginning, thanksgiving and praise; at the end, the wish that the grace of God guide the journey of the community to whom the writing is addressed. The content of the Apostle's Letters develops between the opening formula: "I thank my God through Jesus Christ" (Romans 1:8), and the final wishes: "The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you" (1 Corinthians 16:23). The prayer of St. Paul manifests a great wealth of forms -- from thanksgiving to benediction, from praise to petition and intercession, from hymns to supplication: a variety of expressions, which demonstrate how prayer involves and penetrates all the situations of life, those which are personal as well as those of the community he is addressing.

Placing Our Time at God's Disposition

A first element that the Apostle wants us to understand is that prayer should not be seen merely as a good work that we carry out for God, an action of ours. First and foremost, it is a gift, the fruit of the living, vivifying presence of the Father of Jesus Christ in us. In the Letter to the Romans he writes: "Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with sighs too deep for words" (8:26). And we know how true the Apostle's saying is: "We do not know how to pray as we ought". We want to pray, but God is far off, we do not have the words, the language, to speak with God, nor even the thought to do so. We can only open ourselves, place our time at God's disposition, wait for Him to help us to enter into true dialogue. The Apostle says: this very lack of words, this absence of words, yet this desire to enter into contact with God, is prayer that the Holy Spirit not only understands, but brings and interprets before God. This very weakness of ours becomes -- through the Holy Spirit -- true prayer, true contact with God. The Holy Spirit is, as it were, the interpreter who makes us, and God, understand what it is we wish to say.

Rely Increasingly Upon Him

In prayer we experience -- more than in other aspects of life -- our weakness, our poverty, our being creatures, for we are placed before the omnipotence and transcendence of God. And the more we advance in listening and in dialogue with God, so that prayer becomes the daily breath of our souls, the more we also perceive the measure of our limitations, not only in the face of the concrete situations of everyday life, but also in our relationship with the Lord. The need to trust, to rely increasingly upon Him then grows in us; we come to understand that "we do not know ... how to pray as we ought" (Romans 8:26).

Toward the Heights of God

And it is the Holy Spirit who helps our inability, who enlightens our minds and warms our hearts, guiding us as we turn to God. For St. Paul, prayer is above all the work of the Holy Spirit in our humanity, to take our weakness and to transform us from men bound to material realities into spiritual men. In the First Letter to the Corinthians he says: "Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is from God, that we might understand the gifts bestowed on us by God. And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths in spiritual terms" (2:12-13). By means of His abiding in our fragile humanity, the Holy Spirit changes us; He intercedes for us; He leads us toward the heights of God (cf. Romans 8:26).

The Spirit of Christ

Our union with Christ is realized by this presence of the Holy Spirit, for He is the Spirit of the Son of God, in whom we are made children. St. Paul speaks of the Spirit of Christ (cf. Romans 8:9), and not only of the Spirit of God. It is obvious: if Christ is the Son of God, His Spirit is also the Spirit of God. Thus, if the Spirit of God -- the Spirit of Christ -- already drew near to us in the Son of God and Son of Man, then the Spirit of God also becomes the spirit of man and touches us; we can enter into the communion of the Spirit. It is as if to say that not only God the Father became visible in the Incarnation of the Son, but also that the Spirit of God revealed Himself in the life and action of Jesus, of Jesus Christ, who lived, was crucified, died and was raised.

Inebriated with the Holy Spirit and Rooted in Christ

The Apostles reminds us that "no one can say 'Jesus is Lord', except by the Holy Spirit" (1 Corinthians 12:3). The Spirit, then, directs our hearts toward Jesus Christ, such that "it is not longer we who live, but Christ who lives in us" (cf. Galations 2:20). In his Catecheses on the Sacraments, reflecting on the Eucharist, St. Ambrose affirms: "He who is inebriated with the Holy Spirit is rooted in Christ" (5,3,17: PL 16, 450).

And now I would like to highlight three consequences for our Christian lives when we allow the Spirit of Christ, and not the spirit of the world, to work in us as the interior principle of all our actions.

Freedom from Fear

First, prayer animated by the Spirit enables us to abandon and to overcome every form of fear and slavery, and so to experience the true freedom of the children of God. Without prayer that nourishes our being in Christ each day in a steadily growing intimacy, we find ourselves in the condition described by St. Paul in the Letter to the Romans: we do not do the good we want, but the evil we do not want (cf. Romans 7:19).

The Ability to Follow the Desire for True Joy

And this is the expression of the alienation of the human being, of the destruction of our freedom due to the condition of our being that is brought about by original sin: we want the good that we do not do, and we do what we do not want, evil. The Apostle wants us to understand that it is not our will that first and foremost frees us from this condition, nor is it the Law, but rather the Holy Spirit. And since "where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom" (2 Corinthians 3:17), through prayer we experience the freedom given by the Spirit: an authentic freedom, which is freedom from evil and from sin for the good and for life, for God. The freedom of the Spirit, St. Paul continues, is never identical with libertinism or with the possibility of choosing evil but rather with the "fruit of the Spirit which is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control" (Galatians 5:22). This is true freedom: the ability to actually follow the desire for the good, for true joy, for communion with God and not to be oppressed by the circumstances that take us down other roads.

Suffering

A second consequence that comes about in our lives when we allow the Spirit of Christ to work in us is that our relationship with God becomes so deep that it cannot be affected by any circumstance or situation. We then come to understand that, through prayer, we are not delivered from trials or sufferings, but we are able to live them in union with Christ, with His sufferings, with a view to participating also in His glory (cf. Romans 8:17).

The Impression That We Have Not Been Heard

Many times, in our prayer, we ask God to be freed from physical or spiritual evil, and we do this with great trust. Yet we often have the impression that we have not been heard, and then we run the risk of becoming discouraged and of not persevering. In reality, there is no human cry that God does not hear, and it is precisely in continual and faithful prayer that we come to understand with St. Paul that "the sufferings of the present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us" (Romans 8:18).

God Responds

Prayer does not exempt us from trial and suffering; indeed -- St. Paul says -- we "groan inwardly as we wait for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies" (Romans 8:23); he says that prayer does not exempt us from suffering, but that prayer allows us to experience it and to face it with new strength, with the same trust as Jesus, who -- according to the Letter to the Hebrews -- "in the days of his flesh offered prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to God who was able to save Him from death, and He was heard on account of his complete abandonment to Him" (5:7). God the Father's response to the Son, to his loud cries and tears, was not deliverance from suffering, from the Cross, from death; rather, it was a much greater fulfillment, a much deeper response; through the Cross and death, God responded with the Resurrection of the Son, with new life. Prayer animated by the Holy Spirit leads us, too, to live the journey of life with its daily trials and suffering in full hope and trust in God, who responds as he responded to the Son.

Intercession

And, third, the prayer of the believer opens out to the dimensions of humanity and of the whole creation, by taking on the "eager longing of creation for the revealing of the sons of God" (Romans 8:19). This means that prayer, sustained by the Spirit of Christ who speaks in our interior depths, never remains closed in upon itself, it is never only prayer for me; rather, it opens out to a sharing in the suffering of our time, of others. It becomes intercession for others, and thus freedom for me; a channel of hope for all creation and the expression of that love of God, which has been poured into our hearts through the Spirit who has been given to us (cf. Romans 5:5). And this is a sign of true prayer, that it does not end in ourselves, but opens out to others and so liberates me, and so helps in the redemption of the world.

The Holy Spirit: Light and Fire of Our Prayer

Dear brothers and sisters, St. Paul teaches us that in our prayer we must open ourselves to the presence of the Holy Spirit, who prays in us with sighs too deep for words, in order to bring us to adhere to God with all our hearts and with all our being. The Spirit of Christ becomes the strength of our "weak" prayer, the light of our "extinguished" prayer, the fire of our "cold and arid" prayer, by giving us true interior freedom, by teaching us to live facing life's trials in the certainty that we are not alone, and by opening us to the horizons of humanity and creation "which groans in travail until now" (Romans 8:22). Thank you.


37 posted on 05/17/2012 5:15:50 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation
Vultus Christi

In Cenaculi Solitudine

 on May 17, 2012 8:18 PM |
 
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Our Lady of the Cenacle

Many years ago and long before I had any idea that I would one day play a role in establishing a monastery under the patronage of Our Lady of the Cenacle, I was searching out the treasures of my missal, and discovered, among the Masses for Certain Places, the Mass of Our Lady of the Cenacle for the Saturday within the Octave of the Ascension. The Proper texts of the Mass stirred my heart. This Mass was composed and approved in 1886 at the request of Mother Marie-Aimée Lautier, Superior General of the Congregation of the Cenacle. The humble foundress of the Society of Our Lady of the Cenacle, Saint Thérèse Couderc, died in 1885.

(It is a pity that, with Ascension Thursday being observed in so many places on the following Sunday, both the Pentecost Novena and the feast of Our Lady of the Cenacle are adversely affected.)

This particular Mass was not retained in the Collection of Masses in Honour of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The Religious of the Cenacle, for whom these texts were composed, no longer use them.

The orations are, like so many composed in the 19th century, addressed to Our Lord Jesus Christ, rather than to the Father. They contain some wonderfully evocative phrases in the original Latin.

Collect

Deus, qui beatam Mariam semper Virginem matrem tuam
in Cenaculi solitudine cum discipulis orantem
Sancti Spiritus donis cumulasti:
fac nos, quaesumus, cordis recessum diligere;
ut sic rectius orantes
Spiritus Sancti gratiis repleri mereamur.

O God, who, in the solitude of the Cenacle, didst fill with the gifts of the Holy Ghost
Blessed Mary ever Virgin, Thy mother, united in prayer with Thy disciples;
grant that we may so withdraw into the secret places of the heart
that by praying aright,
we may be made worthy to be filled with these graces in abundance.
Who with God the Father livest and reignest
in the unity of the same Holy Ghost,
one God, world without end.

Secret or Prayer Over the Oblations

Haec sacra, Domine, tibi in honorem beatae Mariae Virginis Matris tuae litantes.
humiliter petimus,
ut sicut ipsa verba tua sancta in corde suo sollicite servavit,
nobis quoque ejus intercessione concedas,
ita in lege tua assidue meditari,
ut fidelius opere implere eam valeamus.

Offering Thee, O Lord,
these sacred gifts in honour of the Blessed Virgin Mary Thy mother,
we humbly ask that,
by the example and intercession of her
who carefully kept Thy holy words in her heart,
we too may meditate Thy law assiduously,
so as to put it into practice more faithfully.

Postcommunion

Deus, qui fideles tuos in Cenaculi recessu cum Maria Matre tua sacratissima
perseverantes et unanimes in oratione effecisti:
praesta, quaesumus;
ut his quoque donis ornati et a saeculi strepitu segregati,
tibi soli in caritate perfecta vivamus.

O God, who to thy faithful withdrawn in the Cenacle,
didst grant perseverance in prayer in oneness of heart
with Mary, Thy most holy Mother,
grant, we beseech Thee, that we also,
graced with the same gift
and separated from the noise of the world,
may live for Thee alone in perfect charity.


38 posted on 05/17/2012 5:17:22 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
Regnum Christi

Letting the Lord Work
| SPIRITUAL LIFE
Ascension Thursday



Father John Doyle, LC

Mark 16:15-20

Jesus said to his disciples: "Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved; whoever does not believe will be condemned. These signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will drive out demons, they will speak new languages. They will pick up serpents with their hands, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not harm them. They will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover." So then the Lord Jesus, after he spoke to them, was taken up into heaven and took his seat at the right hand of God. But they went forth and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the word through accompanying signs.

Introductory Prayer: Lord, as I begin this prayer I offer you my whole self: my thoughts, desires, decisions, actions, hopes, fears, weaknesses, failures and petty successes. I open my entire being to you, aware that you know everything already. I’m certain of your mercy and of the purifying power of your penetrating, loving gaze.

Petition: Lord help me to be an apostle of your kingdom.

1. God’s Paradoxical Plan of Salvation: Jesus ascends into heaven, but before he does, he leaves his disciples a mission. He assigns them the task of building up his Church. Maybe we are so accustomed to the story that it no longer astonishes us –– but it is truly incredible. These were the same men who just a few weeks earlier had abandoned Christ and locked themselves up in a room out of fear. Humanly speaking anyone would have bet a good deal that their mission was doomed to prompt and certain failure –– yet here we are two thousand years later! I too, am called by Christ to spread my faith, and if I ever feel that I am not the best qualified for this mission, well… I just have to remember that my Captain is sitting at the right hand of the Father, directing the whole operation.

2. Signs of God’s Providence: Time and time again throughout history, Our Lord has shown signs of his power at work in his Church to strengthen our faith. Extraordinary miracles have always accompanied the preaching of the Gospel right to our own day. Devils are still driven out, and many sick are still being cured in the most extraordinarily unexplainable ways. The greatest miracle of all however is the miracle of Christ’s continued presence with us in the Eucharist and the conversion of heart that takes place in the sacrament of reconciliation. God is constantly at work for his people. Even when he doesn’t grant us astonishing signs, he does shower countless signs of his providence upon us every day. Am I able to recognize them?

3. The Lord at Work: The key to success in the mission of being a witness to Christ and his Gospel is found in letting God work. Like the first apostles, we have to cast our nets where the Lord directs us. So many times pride and human ambition have stood in the way of God’s plan. We don’t have to be anything special to work for the Lord; all we need to do is to follow his direction. What great quality do we really possess anyway that is not a gift from God and his already? Am I confident that the Lord is already at work in me? Do I recognize the signs of his provident love in my life, and do I thank him for them?

Conversation with Christ: Lord Jesus, help me to understand that being an apostle is not an option, but a demand of my baptism. It is the way I can respond to the immense love you have shown to me. Please continue to work in my life.

Resolution: I will pause before I go to bed and reflect on the signs of God’s providence in my life, thanking him for them.


39 posted on 05/17/2012 5:35:58 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation
Mark
  English: Douay-Rheims Latin: Vulgata Clementina Greek NT: Byzantine/Majority Text (2000)
  Mark 16
15 And he said to them: Go ye into the whole world, and preach the gospel to every creature. Et dixit eis : Euntes in mundum universum prædicate Evangelium omni creaturæ. και ειπεν αυτοις πορευθεντες εις τον κοσμον απαντα κηρυξατε το ευαγγελιον παση τη κτισει
16 He that believeth and is baptized, shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall be condemned. Qui crediderit, et baptizatus fuerit, salvus erit : qui vero non crediderit, condemnabitur. ο πιστευσας και βαπτισθεις σωθησεται ο δε απιστησας κατακριθησεται
17 And these signs shall follow them that believe: In my name they shall cast out devils: they shall speak with new tongues. Signa autem eos qui crediderint, hæc sequentur : in nomine meo dæmonia ejicient : linguis loquentur novis : σημεια δε τοις πιστευσασιν ταυτα παρακολουθησει εν τω ονοματι μου δαιμονια εκβαλουσιν γλωσσαις λαλησουσιν καιναις
18 They shall take up serpents; and if they shall drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them: they shall lay their hands upon the sick, and they shall recover. serpentes tollent : et si mortiferum quid biberint, non eis nocebit : super ægros manus imponent, et bene habebunt. οφεις αρουσιν καν θανασιμον τι πιωσιν ου μη αυτους βλαψη επι αρρωστους χειρας επιθησουσιν και καλως εξουσιν
19 And the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God. Et Dominus quidem Jesus postquam locutus est eis, assumptus est in cælum, et sedet a dextris Dei. ο μεν ουν κυριος μετα το λαλησαι αυτοις ανεληφθη εις τον ουρανον και εκαθισεν εκ δεξιων του θεου
20 But they going forth preached every where: the Lord working withal, and confirming the word with signs that followed. Illi autem profecti prædicaverunt ubique, Domino cooperante, et sermonem confirmante, sequentibus signis. εκεινοι δε εξελθοντες εκηρυξαν πανταχου του κυριου συνεργουντος και τον λογον βεβαιουντος δια των επακολουθουντων σημειων αμην

40 posted on 05/17/2012 5:53:08 PM PDT by annalex (http://www.catecheticsonline.com/CatenaAurea.php)
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To: annalex
15. And he said to them, Go you into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature.
16. He that believes and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believed not shall be damned.
17. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;
18. They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

AUG. But how was this done the last time? The last occasion on which the Apostles saw the Lord upon earth happened forty days after the resurrection; but would He then have upbraided them for not believing those who had seen Him risen, when they themselves had so often seen Him after His resurrection? It remains therefore that we should understand that Mark wished to say it in few words, and said for the last time, because it was the last time that He showed Himself that day, as night was coming on, when the disciples returned from the country into Jerusalem, and found, as Luke says, the eleven and those who were with them, speaking together concerning the resurrection of our Lord.

But there were some there who did not believe; when these then were sitting at meat, (as Mark says,) and were still speaking, (as Luke relates,) The Lord stood in the midst of them, and said to them, Peace be to you; as Luke and John say. The rebuke therefore which Mark here mentions, must have been amongst those words, which Luke and John say, that the Lord at that time spoke to the disciples. But another question is raised, how Mark says that He appeared when the eleven sat at meat, if the time was the first part of the night on the Lord's day, when John plainly says that Thomas was not with them, who, we believe, had gone out, before the Lord came in to them, after those two had returned from the village, and spoken with the eleven, as we find in Luke's Gospel.

But Luke in his relation leaves room for supposing that Thomas went out first, while they spoke these things, and that the Lord entered afterwards; Mark however from his saying, for the last time he appeared to the eleven as they sat at meat, forces us to believe that he was there, unless indeed, though one of them was absent he chose to call them the eleven, because the company of the Apostles was then called by this number, before Matthias was chosen into the place of Judas. Or if this be a harsh way of understanding it, let us understand that it means that after many appearances, He showed Himself for the last time, that is, on the fortieth clay, to the Apostles, as they sat at meat, and that since He was about to ascend from them, He rather wished on that day to reprove them for not having believed those who had seen Him risen before seeing Him themselves, because after His ascension even the Gentiles on their preaching were to believe a Gospel, which they had not seen.

And so the same Mark immediately after that rebuke says, And he said to them, Go you into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature. And lower down, He that believes not shall be condemned. Since then they were to preach this, were not they themselves to be first rebuked, because before they saw the Lord they had not believed those to who He had first appeared?

GREG. Another reason also why our Lord rebuked His disciples, when He left them as to His bodily presence, was, that the words which He spoke on leaving them might remain more deeply impressed, upon the hearts of His hearers.

PSEUDO-JEROME; But He rebukes their want of faith, that faith might take its place; He rebukes the hardness of their stony heart, that the fleshy heart, full of love, might take its place.

GREG. After rebuking the hardness of their hearts, let us hear the words of advice which He speaks. For it goes on: Go you into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature. Every man must be understood by every creature; for man partakes something of every creature; he has existence as have stones, life as trees, feeling as animals, understanding as have Angels. For the Gospel is preached to every creature, because he is taught by it, for whose sake all are created, whom all things are in some way like, and from whom therefore they are not alien. By the name of every creature also every nation of the Gentiles may be meant. For it had been said before, Go not into the way of the Gentiles. But now it is said, Preach the Gospel to every creature, so that the preaching of the Apostles which was thrust aside by Judea, might be an assistance to us, since Judea, had haughtily rejected it, thus witnessing to her own damnation.

THEOPHYL. Or else; to every creature, that is, whether believing or unbelieving. It goes on: He that believes and is baptized shall be saved. For it is not enough to believe, for he who believes and is not baptized, but is a catechumen, has not yet attained to perfect salvation.

GREG. But perhaps some one may say in himself, I have already believed, I shall be saved. He says what is true, if he keeps his faith by works; for that is a true faith, which does not contradict by its deeds what it says in words. There follows: But he that believes not shall be damned.

BEDE; What shall we say here about infants, who by reason of their age cannot yet believe; for as to older persons there is no question. In the Church then of our Savior children believe by others, as also they drew from others the sins which are remitted to them in baptism. It goes on: And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents.

THEOPHYL. That is, they shall scatter before them serpents, whether intellectual or sensible, as it is said, you shall tread upon serpents and scorpions, which is understood spiritually. But it may also mean sensible serpents, as when Paul received no hurt from the viper. There follows: And if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them. We read of many such cases in history, for many persons have drank poison unhurt, by guarding themselves with the sign of Christ. It goes on: They shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

GREG. Are we then without faith because we cannot do these signs? Nay, but these things were necessary in the beginning of the Church, for the faith of believers was to be nourished by miracles, that it might increase. Thus we also, when we plant groves, pour water upon them, until we see that they have grown strong in the earth; but when once they have firmly fixed their roots, we leave off irrigating them. These signs and miracles have other things which we ought to consider more minutely.

For Holy Church does every day in spirit what then the Apostles did in body; for when her Priests by the grace of exorcism lay their hands on believers, and forbid the evil spirits to dwell in their minds, what do they, but cast out devils? And the faithful who have left earthly words, and whose tongues sound forth the Holy Mysteries, speak a new language; they who by their good warnings take away evil from the hearts of others, take up serpents; and when they are hearing words of pestilent persuasion, without being at all drawn aside to evil doing, they drink a deadly thing, but it will never hurt them; whenever they see their neighbors growing weak in good works, and by their good example strengthen their life, they lay their hands on the sick, that they may recover. And all these miracles are greater in proportion as they are spiritual, and by them souls and not bodies are raised.

19. So then after the Lord had spoken to them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.
20. And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.

PSEUDO-JEROME; The Lord Jesus, who had descended from heaven to give liberty to our weak nature, Himself also ascended above the heavens; wherefore it is said, So then after the Lord had spoken to them, he was received up into heaven.

AUG. By which words He seems to show clearly enough that the foregoing discourse was the last that He spoke to them upon earth, though it does not appear to bind us down altogether to this opinion. For He does not say, After He had thus spoken to them, wherefore it admits of being understood not as if that was the last discourse, but that the words which are here used, After the Lord had spoken to them, he was received into heaven, might belong to all His other discourses. But since the arguments which we have used above make us rather suppose that this was the last time, therefore we ought to believe that after these words, together with those which are recorded in the Acts of the Apostles, our Lord ascended into heaven.

GREG. We have seen in the Old Testament that Elias was taken up into heaven. But the ethereal heaven is one thing, the aerial is another. The aerial heaven is nearer the earth, Elias then was raised into the aerial heaven, that he might be carried off suddenly into some secret region of the earth, there to live in great calmness of body and spirit, until he return at the end of the world, and pay the debt of death. We may also observe that Elias mounted up in a chariot, that by this they might understand that a mere man requires help from without. But our Redeemer, as we read, was not carried up by a chariot, not by angels, because He who had made all things was borne over all by His own power. We must also consider what Mark subjoins, And sat at the right hand of God, since Stephen says, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God. Now sitting is the attitude of a judge, standing of one fighting or helping. Therefore Stephen, when toiling in the contest, saw Him standing whom he had for his helper; but Mark describes Him as sitting after His assumption into heaven, because after the glory of His assumption, He will in the end be seen as a judge.

AUG. Let us not therefore understand this sitting as though He were placed there in human limbs, as if the Father sat on the left, the Son on the right, but by the right hand itself we understand the power which He as man received from God, that He should come to judge, who first had come to be judged. For by sitting we express habitation, as we say of a person, he sat himself down in that country for many years; in this way then believe that Christ dwells at the right hand of God the Father. For or He is blessed and dwells in blessedness, which is called the right hand of the Father; for all is right hand there, since there is no misery.

It goes on: And they went forth and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs and wonders.

BEDE; Observe that in proportion as Mark began his history later, so he makes it reach in writing to more distant times, for he began from the commencement of the preaching of the Gospel by John, and he reaches in his narrative those times in which the Apostles sowed the same word of the Gospel throughout the world.

GREG. But what should we consider in these words, if it be not that obedience follows the precept and signs follow the obedience? For the Lord had commanded them, Go into all the world preaching the Gospel, and, you shall be witnesses even to the ends of the earth.

AUG. But how was this preaching fulfilled by the Apostles, since there are many nations in which it has just begun, and others in which it has not yet begun to be fulfilled? Truly then this precept was not so laid upon the Apostles by our Lord, as though they alone to whom He then spoke were to fulfill so great a charge; in the same way as He says, Behold, I am with you always, even to the end of the world, apparently to them alone; but who does not understand that the promise is made to the Catholic Church, which though some are dying, others are born, shall be here to the end of the world?

THEOPHYL. But we must also know from this that words are confirmed by deeds as then in the Apostles works confirmed their words, for signs followed. Grant then, O Christ, that the good words which we speak may working confirmed by works and deeds, so that at the last, You working with us in word and in deed, we may be perfect, for Yours as is fitting is the glory both of word and deed. Amen.

Catena Aurea Mark 16
41 posted on 05/17/2012 5:53:51 PM PDT by annalex (http://www.catecheticsonline.com/CatenaAurea.php)
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To: annalex


Antiphonary

Lorenzo Monaco

c. 1410
Tempera and gold on parchment, mounted on panel, 402 x 327 mm
Bernard H. Breslauer, New York

Cod. Cor. 3 is one of the most lavishly illuminated books of the fifteenth century. It comprises seventeenth historiated initials, in addition to the three that have been removed. Folio 59 contains the Ascension in an initial V, which begins the introit to the Mass for the Ascension.

The blue and pink initial V is framed within a painted mosaic border punctuated by truncated quatrelobe medallions at the corners and centres, each containing a bust-length figure of a prophet. Within the initial is a rocky landscape with the Twelve Apostles kneeling in wonder as two angels point out to them the figure of Christ in glory on a bank of clouds above their heads.

Link

42 posted on 05/17/2012 5:54:41 PM PDT by annalex (http://www.catecheticsonline.com/CatenaAurea.php)
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To: All
 
Marriage = One Man and One Woman
Til' Death Do Us Part

Daily Marriage Tip for May 17, 2012:

Save time at the end of each day to share the highs and lows of your day with each other. Go beyond “just the facts” to how it made you feel.


43 posted on 05/17/2012 6:41:25 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

Rejoice

Earlier our Lord consoled the disciples by assuring them that He would send them the Holy Spirit after He went away (verse 7).  Now He gives them further consolation: He is not leaving them permanently, He will come back to stay with them.  However, the Apostles fail to grasp what He means, and they ask each other what they make of it.  Our Lord does not give them a direct explanation, perhaps because they would not understand what He meant (as happened before: cf. Matthew 16:21-23 and paragraph).  But He does emphasize that though they are sad now they will soon be rejoicing: after suffering tribulation they will be filled with a joy they will never lose (cf. John 17:13). 

This is a reference primarily to the Resurrection (cf. Luke 24:41), but also to their definitive encounter with Christ in Heaven.


44 posted on 05/17/2012 6:48:47 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
One Bread, One Body

One Bread, One Body

 


<< Thursday, May 17, 2012 >> Saint of the Day
 
Acts 18:1-8
View Readings
Psalm 98:1-4 John 16:16-20
 

"THE TIME IS SHORT" (1 Cor 7:29)

 
"What does He mean by this 'short time'?" —John 16:18
 

The "now" word in today's readings is: "within a short time" (Jn 16:16). The phrase "short time" is used four times in the Gospel passage. Through this repetition, the Lord undoubtedly wants to emphasize that something is about to happen. In addition, He obviously wants us ready instead of unprepared when it takes place.

Liturgically, we begin praying the Pentecost novena tomorrow. Throughout this novena, we prepare to receive the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. Like a parent hustling to get children ready to catch the school bus, the Lord, through His Church, practically screams to us that it's time to stop dawdling. We must get ready to pray now or we'll miss the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, which the Lord has long been preparing for us.

"The time is short" (1 Cor 7:29). Do whatever it takes to get ready for the Holy Spirit. Turn off or throw out the TV. Stop reading the newspapers and read the Bible instead. Go to Confession during the novena. Attend Mass as often as possible, even daily during these nine days. When the Spirit comes, may He find you ready and waiting with open arms. "Within a short time," "receive the Holy Spirit" (Jn 16:16; 20:22).

 
Prayer: Holy Spirit, may I be so prepared to receive You that it only takes me a "short time" to respond to You.
Promise: "Many of the Corinthians, too, who heard Paul believed and were baptized." —Acts 18:8
Praise: Karl, a lawyer, has generously donated his time for years to serve God as a legal consultant to a Catholic ministry.

45 posted on 05/17/2012 7:22:14 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
“First and foremost, the right to life of every human person – from conception to natural death – is the primary and thus most essential of all human rights,” the letter stated. “Faith teaches and human reason confirms that human life is not a privilege bestowed on us by others, but rather a right that society must recognize and protect.

"As Christians, we are called to witness to an authentic ‘human ecology’ which safeguards all human life – no matter how frail or impaired – from being manipulated or destroyed.”

Bishops of Wisconsin

 

VOTE FOR LIFE!

 

 


46 posted on 05/17/2012 7:42:02 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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