Welcome to the ULC Minister's Network

Arch Bishop Micheal Ralph Vendegna S.O.S.M.A.

Office Readings

  • Friday 11 September 2020

    Friday of week 23 in Ordinary Time 

    Office of Readings

    Introduction (without Invitatory)

    If this is the first Hour that you are reciting today, use the version with the Invitatory Psalm instead.

    O God, come to our aid.
    O Lord, make haste to help us.
    Glory be to the Father and to the Son
    and to the Holy Spirit,
    as it was in the beginning,
    is now, and ever shall be,
    world without end.
    Amen. Alleluia.



    In ancient times God spoke to us
    Through prophets, and in varied ways,
    But now he speaks through Christ his Son,
    His radiance through eternal days.

    To God the Father of the world,
    His Son through whom he made all things,
    And Holy Spirit, bond of love,
    All glad creation glory sings.

    Stanbrook Abbey Hymnal


    Psalm 68 (69)
    I am consumed with zeal for your house

    “They gave him wine to drink mixed with gall” (Mt 27:34).

    I am wearied with all my crying as I await my God.

    Save me, O God,
    for the waters have risen to my neck.

    I have sunk into the mud of the deep
    and there is no foothold.
    I have entered the waters of the deep
    and the waves overwhelm me.

    I am wearied with all my crying,
    my throat is parched.
    My eyes are wasted away
    from looking for my God.

    More numerous than the hairs on my head
    are those who hate me without cause.
    Those who attack me with lies
    are too much for my strength.

    How can I restore
    what I have never stolen?
    O God, you know my sinful folly;
    my sins you can see.

    Let those who hope in you not be put to shame
    through me, Lord of hosts:
    let not those who seek you be dismayed
    through me, God of Israel.

    It is for you that I suffer taunts,
    that shame covers my face,
    that I have become a stranger to my brothers,
    an alien to my own mother’s sons.
    I burn with zeal for your house
    and taunts against you fall on me.

    When I afflict my soul with fasting
    they make it a taunt against me.
    When I put on sackcloth in mourning
    then they make me a byword,
    the gossip of men at the gates,
    the subject of drunkards’ songs.

    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.

    I am wearied with all my crying as I await my God.


    Psalm 68 (69)

    For food they gave me poison, and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.

    This is my prayer to you,
    my prayer for your favour.
    In your great love, answer me, O God,
    with your help that never fails:
    rescue me from sinking in the mud;
    save me from my foes.

    Save me from the waters of the deep
    lest the waves overwhelm me.
    Do not let the deep engulf me
    nor death close its mouth on me.

    Lord, answer, for your love is kind;
    in your compassion, turn towards me.
    Do not hide your face from your servant;
    answer quickly for I am in distress.
    Come close to my soul and redeem me;
    ransom me pressed by my foes.

    You know how they taunt and deride me;
    my oppressors are all before you.
    Taunts have broken my heart;
    I have reached the end of my strength.
    I looked in vain for compassion,
    for consolers; not one could I find.

    For food they gave me poison;
    in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.

    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.

    For food they gave me poison, and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.


    Psalm 68 (69)

    Seek the Lord, and he will give life to your soul.

    As for me in my poverty and pain
    let your help, O God, lift me up.

    I will praise God’s name with a song;
    I will glorify him with thanksgiving.
    A gift pleasing God more than oxen,
    more than beasts prepared for sacrifice.

    The poor when they see it will be glad
    and God-seeking hearts will revive;
    for the Lord listens to the needy
    and does not spurn his servants in their chains.
    Let the heavens and the earth give him praise,
    the sea and all its living creatures.

    For God will bring help to Sion
    and rebuild the cities of Judah
    and men shall dwell there in possession.
    The sons of his servants shall inherit it;
    those who love his name shall dwell there.

    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.

    Seek the Lord, and he will give life to your soul.


    God our Father, to show the way of salvation, you chose that the standard of the cross should go before us, and you fulfilled the ancient prophecies in Christ’s passover from death to life. Do not let us rouse your burning indignation by sin, but rather, through the contemplation of his wounds, make us burn with zeal for the honour of your Church and with grateful love for you.


    ℣. The Lord will teach us his ways.
    ℟. We will walk in his paths.


    Readings (official one-year cycle)

    First Reading
    Lamentations 3:1-33
    Lamentation and hope

    I am the man familiar with misery
    under the rod of his anger;
    I am the one he has driven and forced to walk
    in darkness, and without any light.
    Against me alone he turns his hand,
    again and again, all day long.

    He has wasted my flesh and skin away,
    has broken my bones.
    He has made a yoke for me,
    has encircled my head with weariness.
    He has forced me to dwell in darkness
    with the dead of long ago.

    He has walled me in; I cannot escape;
    he has made my chains heavy;
    and when I call and shout,
    he shuts out my prayer.
    He has blocked my ways with cut stones,
    he has obstructed my paths.

    For me he has been a lurking bear,
    a lion on the watch.
    He has filled my paths with briars and torn me,
    he has made me a thing of horror.
    He has bent his bow and taken aim,
    making me the target for his arrows.

    In my back he has planted his darts,
    the children of his quiver.
    I have become the laughing-stock of my whole nation,
    their butt all day long.
    He has given me my fill of bitterness,
    he has made me drunk with wormwood.

    He has broken my teeth with gravel,
    he has given me ashes for food.
    My soul is shut out from peace;
    I have forgotten happiness.
    And now I say, ‘My strength is gone,
    that hope which came from the Lord.’

    Brooding on my anguish and affliction
    is gall and wormwood.
    My spirit ponders it continually
    and sinks within me.
    This is what I shall tell my heart,
    and so recover hope:

    the favours of the Lord are not all past,
    his kindnesses are not exhausted;
    every morning they are renewed;
    great is his faithfulness.
    ‘My portion is the Lord’ says my soul
    ‘and so I will hope in him.’

    The Lord is good to those who trust him,
    to the soul that searches for him.
    It is good to wait in silence
    for the Lord to save.
    It is good for a man to bear the yoke
    from youth onwards,

    to sit in solitude and silence
    when the Lord fastens it on him,
    to put his lips to the dust
     – perhaps there still is hope –
    to offer his cheek to the striker,
    to be overwhelmed with insults.

    For the Lord does not reject mankind
    for ever and ever.
    If he has punished, he has compassion
    so great is his kindness;
    since he takes no pleasure in abasing
    and afflicting the human race.

    Is 57:1-2, 53:7-8

    ℟. They were my enemies for no reason. I said: My end has come. I called on your name, O Lord, and you heard my appeal.* Have no fear, you said; you pleaded my cause, you ransomed my life.
    ℣. I am ready not merely to be fettered, but even to die for the name of the Lord Jesus.* Have no fear, you said; you pleaded my cause, you ransomed my life.


    Second Reading
    From a sermon by Blessed Isaac of Stella, abbot
    It is not Christ's will to forgive without the Church

    There are two things that are God’s and God’s alone: the honour of receiving confession and the power of granting forgiveness. Confession is what we must make to him, and forgiveness is what we must hope to receive from him. The power to forgive sins belongs only to God, and this is why we must confess them to him.
    But God has taken a bride. The Almighty has taken the feeble one, the Most High has taken the lowly one – out of a servant he has made a queen. She was behind and beneath him and he raised her to be at his side. From out of his wounded side she came, and he took her to be his bride.
    Just as all that the Father has is the Son’s, so too what the Son has is the Father’s, since they share the same undivided nature. In just the same way the bridegroom gave all that was his to the bride and shared all that she had, making her one with himself and the Father. Hear the Son making his plea to the Father for his bride: I desire that just as you and I are one, so these should be one with us.
    The bridegroom is one with the Father and one with his bride. Whatever in her was foreign to her nature he took away from her and nailed to the cross. He carried her sins with him onto the tree and by the tree he took them away from her. Whatever was natural and proper to her he took on and clothed himself in it. Whatever was divine and proper to him, he bestowed on her. He took away what was diabolical, took on what was human, conferred what was divine, so that all that the bride possessed should be the bridegroom’s also. Thus it is that he who has committed no sin, on whose lips is no deceit, can say Take pity on me, Lord, for I am weak – for he who shares in his bride’s weakness must share in her lament, and thus all that is the bridegroom’s is the bride’s also. Here is where the honour of confession comes from, and the power of forgiveness, so that it can truly be said: Go and show yourself to the priest!
    The Church can forgive nothing without Christ, and it is Christ’s will to forgive nothing except with the Church. The Church can forgive no-one except the penitent – that is, one who has been touched by Christ – and Christ does not wish to forgive anyone who does not value the Church. What God has united, man must not divide, says Christ, and Paul adds, I am saying that this great mystery applies to Christ and the Church.
    Do not sever the head from the body so that Christ is whole no longer. For Christ is not whole without the Church, nor is the Church whole without Christ. This is why he says No-one has gone up to heaven except the Son of Man who is in heaven. He is the only man who can forgive sins.


    ℟. I pray that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us. The glory which you have given me I have given to them,* that they may be one just as we are one.
    ℣. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world,* that they may be one just as we are one.


    Let us pray.

    Since it is from you, God our Father,
    that redemption comes to us, your adopted children,
    look with favour on the family you love,
    give true freedom to us and to all who believe in Christ,
    and bring us all alike to our eternal heritage.
    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.


    Let us praise the Lord.
    – Thanks be to God.

    Copyright © 1996-2020 Universalis Publishing Limited: see www.universalis.com. Scripture readings from the Jerusalem Bible are published and copyright © 1966, 1967 and 1968 by Darton, Longman & Todd, Ltd and Doubleday, a division of Random House, Inc, and used by permission of the publishers. Text of the Psalms: Copyright © 1963, The Grail (England). Used with permission of A.P. Watt Ltd. All rights reserved.