Breviary

Office of Readings

If the Saturday Memorial of the Blessed Virgin Mary is observed, the complete texts may be found in the ‘Prayers’ section of the iBreviary. The ferial texts of the Saturday are given below:

INVITATORY

The Invitatory is said when this is the first ‘hour’ of the day.

Go to the Hymn

Go to the Psalmody

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

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

The antiphon is repeated. In individual recitation, the antiphon may be said only at the beginning of the psalm; it need not be repeated after each strophe.

Go to Psalm 24

Go to Psalm 67

Go to Psalm 100

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. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

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. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

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. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

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. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

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. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

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 God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Go to the Hymn

Psalm 24
The Lord’s entry into his temple


Christ opened heaven for us in the manhood he assumed (Saint Irenaeus).

The Lord’s is the earth and its fullness, *
the world and all its peoples.
It is he who set it on the seas; *
on the waters he made it firm.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Who shall climb the mountain of the Lord? *
Who shall stand in his holy place?
The man with clean hands and pure heart,
who desires not worthless things, *
who has not sworn so as to deceive his neighbor.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

He shall receive blessings from the Lord *
and reward from the God who saves him.
Such are the men who seek him, *
seek the face of the God of Jacob.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

O gates, lift high your heads;
grow higher, ancient doors. *
Let him enter, the king of glory!

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Who is the king of glory?
The Lord, the mighty, the valiant, *
the Lord, the valiant in war.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

O gates, lift high your heads;
grow higher, ancient doors. *
Let him enter, the king of glory!

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Who is he, the king of glory?
He, the Lord of armies, *
he is the king of glory.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

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 God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Go to the Hymn

Psalm 67
People of all nations will worship the Lord


You must know that God is offering his salvation to all the world (Acts 28:28).

O God, be gracious and bless us *
and let your face shed its light upon us.
So will your ways be known upon earth *
and all nations learn your saving help.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Let the peoples praise you, O God; *
let all the peoples praise you.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Let the nations be glad and exult *
for you rule the world with justice.
With fairness you rule the peoples, *
you guide the nations on earth.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Let the peoples praise you, O God; *
let all the peoples praise you.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

The earth has yielded its fruit *
for God, our God, has blessed us.
May God still give us his blessing *
till the ends of the earth revere him.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

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 God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Go to the Hymn

Psalm 100
The joyful song of those entering God’s temple


The Lord calls his ransomed people to sing songs of victory (Saint Athanasius).

Cry out with joy to the Lord, all the earth.
Serve the Lord with gladness. *
Come before him, singing for joy.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Know that he, the Lord, is God.
He made us, we belong to him, *
we are his people, the sheep of his flock.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Go within his gates, giving thanks.
Enter his courts with songs of praise. *
Give thanks to him and bless his name.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

Indeed, how good is the Lord,
eternal his merciful love. *
He is faithful from age to age.

Ant. Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

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 God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.

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

Come now, Almighty King,
Help us your name to sing,
Help us to praise;
Father, all glorious,
O’er all victorious,
Come, and reign over us,
Ancient of Days.

Come now, Incarnate Word,
Who for us death endured.
Our prayer attend:
Come, and your people bless,
And give your word success;
Fill us with righteousness,
Savior and friend.

Come, Holy Comforter,
Your sacred witness bear
In this glad hour:
To us your grace impart,
And rule in ev’ry heart!
Never from us depart,
Spirit of pow’r.

To you, O Trinity,
Eternal praises be
Forevermore!
Your Sov’reign majesty
May we in glory see,
And to eternity
Love and adore!

Tune: Moscow (Italian Hymn) 664.6664
Music: Felice de Giardini, 1716-1796
Text: Anonymous

PSALMODY

Ant. 1 Let us praise the Lord for his mercy and for the wonderful things he has done for men.

Psalm 107
Thanksgiving for deliverance


This is God’s message to the sons of Israel; the good news of peace proclaimed through Jesus Christ (Acts 10:36).

I

“O give thanks to the Lord for he is good; *
for his love endures for ever.”

Let them say this, the Lord’s redeemed, *
whom he redeemed from the hand of the foe
and gathered from far-off lands, *
from east and west, north and south.

Some wandered in the desert, in the wilderness, *
finding no way to a city they could dwell in.
Hungry they were and thirsty; *
their soul was fainting within them.

Then they cried to the Lord in their need *
and he rescued them from their distress
and he led them along the right way *
to reach a city they could dwell in.

Let them thank the Lord for his love, *
for the wonders he does for men.
For he satisfies the thirsty soul; *
he fills the hungry with good things.

Some lay in darkness and in gloom, *
prisoners in misery and chains,
Having defied the words of God *
and spurned the counsels of the Most High.
He crushed their spirit with toil; *
they stumbled; there was no one to help.

Then they cried to the Lord in their need *
and he rescued them from their distress.
He led them forth from darkness and gloom *
and broke their chains to pieces.

Let them thank the Lord for his goodness, *
for the wonders he does for men:
for he bursts the gates of bronze *
and shatters the iron bars.

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. Let us praise the Lord for his mercy and for the wonderful things he has done for men.

Ant. 2 Men have seen the works of God, the marvels he has done.

II

Some were sick on account of their sins *
and afflicted on account of their guilt.
They had a loathing for every food; *
they came close to the gates of death.

Then they cried to the Lord in their need *
and he rescued them from their distress.
He sent forth his word to heal them *
and saved their life from the grave.

Let them thank the Lord for his love, *
for the wonders he does for men.
Let them offer a sacrifice of thanks *
and tell of his deeds with rejoicing.

Some sailed to the sea in ships *
to trade on the mighty waters.
These men have seen the Lord’s deeds, *
the wonders he does in the deep.

For he spoke; he summoned the gale, *
raising up the waves of the sea.
Tossed up to heaven, then into the deep; *
their soul melted away in their distress.

They staggered, reeled like drunken men, *
for all their skill was gone.
Then they cried to the Lord in their need *
and he rescued them from their distress.

He stilled the storm to a whisper: *
all the waves of the sea were hushed.
They rejoiced because of the calm *
and he led them to the haven they desired.

Let them thank the Lord for his love, *
the wonders he does for men.
Let them exalt him in the gathering of the people *
and praise him in the meeting of all the elders.

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. Men have seen the works of God, the marvels he has done.

Ant. 3 Those who love the Lord will see and rejoice; they will understand his loving kindness.

III

He changes streams into a desert, *
springs of water into thirsty ground,
fruitful land into a salty waste, *
for the wickedness of those who live there.

But he changes desert into streams, *
thirsty ground into springs of water.
There he settles the hungry *
and they build a city to dwell in.

They sow fields and plant their vines; *
these yield crops for the harvest.
He blesses them; they grow in numbers. *
He does not let their herds decrease.

He pours contempt upon princes, *
makes them wander in trackless wastes.
They diminish, are reduced to nothing *
by oppression, evil and sorrow.

But he raises the needy from distress; *
makes families numerous as a flock.
The upright see it and rejoice *
but all who do wrong are silenced.

Whoever is wise, let him heed these things *
and consider the love of the Lord.

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

You fill the hungry with good things, Lord God, and break the sinner’s chains. Hear your people who call to you in their need and lead your Church from the shadows of death. Gather us from sunrise to sunset, that we may grow together in faith and love and give lasting thanks for your kindness.

Ant. Those who love the Lord will see and rejoice; they will understand his loving kindness.

Your truth, O God, is high as the clouds.
Lord, your goodness is deep as the ocean.

READINGS

FIRST READING

From the second book of Kings
2:1-15

The assumption of Elijah


When the Lord was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, he and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal. “Stay here, please,” Elijah said to Elisha. “The Lord has sent me on to Bethel.” “As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live,” Elisha replied, “I will not leave you.” So they went down to Bethel, where the guild prophets went out to Elisha and asked him, “Do you know that the Lord will take your master from over you today?” “Yes, I know it,” he replied. “Keep still.”

Then Elijah said to him, “Stay here, please, Elisha, for the Lord has sent me on to Jericho.” “As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live,” Elisha replied, “I will not leave you.” They went on to Jericho, where the guild prophets approached Elisha and asked him, “Do you know that the Lord will take your master from over you today?” “Yes, I know it,” he replied. “Keep still.”

Elijah said to Elisha, “Please stay here; the Lord has sent me on to the Jordan.” “As the Lord lives, and as you yourself live,” Elisha replied, “I will not leave you.” And so the two went on together. Fifty of the guild prophets followed, and when the two stopped at the Jordan, stood facing them at a distance. Elijah took his mantle, rolled it up and struck the water, which divided, and both crossed over on dry ground.

When they had crossed over, Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask for whatever I may do for you, before I am taken from you.” Elisha answered, “May I receive a double portion of your spirit.”"You have asked something that is not easy,” he replied. “Still, if you see me taken up from you, your wish will be granted; otherwise not.” As they walked on conversing, a flaming chariot and flaming horses came between them, and Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind. When Elisha saw it happen he cried out, “My father! my father! Israel’s chariots and drivers!” But when he could no longer see him, Elisha gripped his own garment and tore it in two.

Then he picked up Elijah’s mantle which had fallen from him, and went back and stood at the bank of the Jordan. Wielding the mantle which had fallen from Elijah, he struck the water in his turn and said, “Where is the Lord, the God of Elijah?” When Elisha struck the water it divided and he crossed over.

The guild prophets in Jericho, who were on the other side, saw him and said, “The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha.” They went to meet him, bowing to the ground before him.

RESPONSORY
Malachi 4:5; Luke 1:15, 17


Behold, I am sending to you Elijah the prophet
before the day of the Lord’s coming,
that great and terrible day.
He will turn the hearts of fathers to their children
and the hearts of children to their fathers.

John will be great in the sight of the Lord,
and he will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah.
He will turn the hearts of fathers to their children
and the hearts of children to their fathers.

SECOND READING

From the treatise On the Mysteries by Saint Ambrose, bishop
(Nn. 52-54,58: SC 25 bis, 186-188,190)

The sacrament that you receive is effected by the words of Christ


We see that grace can accomplish more than nature, yet so far we have been considering instances of what grace can do through a prophet’s blessing. If the blessing of a human being had power even to change nature, what do we say of God’s action in the consecration itself, in which the very words of the Lord and Savior are effective? If the words of Elijah had power even to bring down fire from heaven, will not the words of Christ have power to change the natures of the elements? You have read that in the creation of the whole world he spoke and they came to be; he commanded and they were created. If Christ could by speaking create out of nothing what did not yet exist, can we say that his words are unable to change existing things into something they previously were not? It is no lesser feat to create new natures for things than to change their existing natures.

What need is there for argumentation? Let us take what happened in the case of Christ himself and construct the truth of this mystery from the mystery of the incarnation. Did the birth of the Lord Jesus from Mary come about in the course of nature? If we look at nature we regularly find that conception results from the union of man and women. It is clear then that the conception by the Virgin was above and beyond the course of nature. And this body that we make present is the body born of the Virgin. Why do you expect to find in this case that nature takes its ordinary course in regard to the body of Christ when the Lord himself was born of the Virgin in a manner above and beyond the order of nature? This is indeed the true flesh of Christ, which was crucified and buried. This is then in truth the sacrament of his flesh.

The Lord Jesus himself declares: This is my body. Before the blessing contained in these words a different thing is named; after the consecration a body is indicated. He himself speaks of his blood. Before the consecration something else is spoken of; after the consecration blood is designated. And you say: “Amen,” that is: “It is true.” What the mouth utters, let the mind within acknowledge; what the word says, let the heart ratify.

So the Church, in response to grace so great, exhorts her children, exhorts her neighbors, to hasten to these mysteries: Neighbors, she says, come and eat; brethren, drink and be filled. In another passage the Holy Spirit has made clear to you what you are to eat, what you are to drink. Taste, the prophet says, and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who puts his trust in him. Christ is in that sacrament, for it is the body of Christ. It is therefore not bodily food but spiritual. Thus the Apostle too says, speaking of its symbol: Our fathers ate spiritual food and drank spiritual drink. For the body of God is spiritual; the body of Christ is that of a divine spirit, for Christ is a spirit. We read: The spirit before our face is Christ the Lord. And in the letter of Saint Peter we have this: Christ died for you. Finally, it is this food that gives strength to our hearts, this drink which gives joy to the heart of man, as the prophet has written.

RESPONSORY
Matthew 26:26; Job 31:31


While they were at table, Jesus took bread,
said the blessing, broke the bread,
and gave it to his disciples saying:
Take this, all of you, and eat it;
this is my body.

Those who dwell with me said:
Who will give us flesh to eat?
Take this, all of you, and eat it;
this is my body.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

God our Father,
your light of truth
guides us to the way of Christ.
May all who follow him
reject what is contrary to the Gospel.
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:

O God, who show the light of your truth
to those who go astray,
so that they may return to the right path,
give all who for the faith they profess
are accounted Christians
the grace to reject whatever is contrary to the name of Christ
and to strive after all that does it honor.
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.

ACCLAMATION

Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.

******

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