Breviary

Office of Readings

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. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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. 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.

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. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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

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.

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. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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. 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.

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. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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

Ant. The Lord is risen, alleluia.

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

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 of Burgundy, eleventh century
Translation: Jane E. Leeson, 1807-1882


Go to the Psalmody

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 Look on us, Lord, and see how we are despised, alleluia.

Psalm 89:39-53
Lament for the fall of David’s dynasty


He has raised up for us a mighty Savior born of the house of David his servant (Luke 1:69).

IV

And yet you have rejected and spurned *
and are angry with the one you have anointed.
You have broken your covenant with your servant *
and dishonored his crown in the dust.

You have broken down all his walls *
and reduced his fortresses to ruins.
He is despoiled by all who pass by: *
he has become the taunt of his neighbors.

You have exalted the right hand of his foes; *
you have made all his enemies rejoice.
You have made his sword give way, *
you have not upheld him in battle.

You have brought his glory to an end; *
you have hurled his throne to the ground.
You have cut short the years of his youth; *
you have heaped disgrace upon 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. Look on us, Lord, and see how we are despised, alleluia.

Ant. 2 I am the root and stock of David; I am the morning star, alleluia.

V

How long, O Lord? Will you hide yourself for ever? *
How long will your anger burn like a fire?
Remember, Lord, the shortness of my life *
and how frail you have made the sons of men.
What man can live and never see death? *
Who can save himself from the grasp of the grave?

Where are your mercies of the past, O Lord, *
which you have sworn in your faithfulness to David?
Remember, Lord, how your servant is taunted, *
how I have to bear all the insults of the peoples.
Thus your enemies taunt me, O Lord, *
mocking your anointed at every step.

Blessed be the Lord for ever. Amen, amen!

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 of mercy and fidelity, you made a new and lasting pact with men and sealed it in the blood of your Son. Forgive the folly of our disloyalty and make us keep your commandments, so that in your new covenant we may be witnesses and heralds of your faithfulness and love on earth, and sharers of your glory in heaven.

Ant. I am the root and stock of David; I am the morning star, alleluia.

Ant. 3 Our years wither away like grass, but you, Lord God, are eternal, alleluia.

Psalm 90
May we live in the radiance of God


There is no time with God: a thousand years, a single day: it is all one (2 Peter 3:8).

O Lord, you have been our refuge *
from one generation to the next.
Before the mountains were born
or the earth or the world brought forth, *
you are God, without beginning or end.

You turn men back into dust *
and say: “Go back, sons of men.”
To your eyes a thousand years
are like yesterday, come and gone, *
no more than a watch in the night.

You sweep men away like a dream, *
like grass which springs up in the morning.
In the morning it springs up and flowers: *
by evening it withers and fades.

So we are destroyed in your anger, *
struck with terror in your fury.
Our guilt lies open before you; *
our secrets in the light of your face.

All our days pass away in your anger. *
Our life is over like a sigh.
Our span is seventy years *
or eighty for those who are strong.

And most of these are emptiness and pain. *
They pass swiftly and we are gone.
Who understands the power of your anger *
and fears the strength of your fury?

Make us know the shortness of our life *
that we may gain wisdom of heart.
Lord, relent! Is your anger for ever? *
Show pity to your servants.

In the morning, fill us with your love; *
we shall exult and rejoice all our days.
Give us joy to balance our affliction *
for the years when we knew misfortune.

Show forth your work to your servants; *
let your glory shine on their children.
Let the favor of the Lord be upon us:
give success to the work of our hands, *
give success to the work of our hands.

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

Eternal Father, you give us life despite our guilt and even add days and years to our lives in order to bring us wisdom. Make us love and obey you, so that the work of our hands may always display what your hands have done, until the day we gaze upon the beauty of your face.

Ant. Our years wither away like grass, but you, Lord God, are eternal, alleluia.

God has raised the Lord to life, alleluia.
Through his power he will also raise us up, alleluia.

READINGS

FIRST READING

From the book of Revelation
9:13-21

The plague of war


I, John, watched and the sixth angel blew his trumpet, and I heard a voice coming from between the horns of the altar of gold in God’s presence. It said to the sixth angel, who was still holding his trumpet, “Release the four angels who are tied up on the banks of the great river Euphrates!”

So the four angels were released; this was precisely the hour, the day, the month, and the year for which they had been prepared, to kill a third of mankind. Their cavalry troops, whose count I heard, were two hundred million in number—a number I heard myself. Now, in my vision, this is how I saw the horses and their riders. The breastplates they wore were fiery red, deep blue, and pale yellow. The horses’ heads were like heads of lions, and out of their mouths came fire and sulphur and smoke. By these three plagues—the smoke and sulphur and fire which shot out of their mouths—a third of mankind was slain. The deadly power of the horses was not only in their mouths but in their tails; for their tails were like snakes with heads poised to strike.

That part of mankind which escaped the plagues did not repent of the idols they had made. They did not give up the worship of demons, or of gods made from gold and silver, from bronze and stone and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk. Neither did they repent of their murders or their sorcery, their fornication or their thefts.

RESPONSORY
Acts 17:30, 31; Joel 1:13, 14


God calls upon all men to repent,
for he has fixed the day
on which he will judge the world with justice, alleluia.

Ministers of God, gather together all the inhabitants of the land
and cry out to the Lord.
For he has fixed the day
on which he will judge the world with justice, alleluia.

SECOND READING

From the treatise Against Heresies by Saint Irenaeus, bishop and martyr
(Lib. 5, 2, 2-3: SC 153, 30-38)

The eucharist, pledge of our resurrection


If our flesh is not saved, then the Lord has not redeemed us with his blood, the eucharistic chalice does not make us sharers in his blood, and the bread we break does not make us sharers in his body. There can be no blood without veins, flesh and the rest of the human substance, and this the Word of God actually became: it was with his own blood that he redeemed us. As the Apostle says: In him, through his blood, we have been redeemed, our sins have been forgiven.

We are his members and we are nourished by creatures, which is his gift to us, for it is he who causes the sun to rise and the rain to fall. He declared that the chalice, which comes from his creation, was his blood, and he makes it the nourishment of our blood. He affirmed that the bread, which comes from his creation, was his body, and he makes it the nourishment of our body. When the chalice we mix and the bread we bake receive the word of God, the eucharistic elements become the body and blood of Christ, by which our bodies live and grow. How then can it be said that flesh belonging to the Lord’s own body and nourished by his body and blood is incapable of receiving God’s gift of eternal life? Saint Paul says in his letter to the Ephesians that we are members of his body, of his flesh and bones. He is not speaking of some spiritual and incorporeal kind of man, for spirits do not have flesh and bones. He is speaking of a real human body composed of flesh, sinews and bones, nourished by the chalice of Christ’s blood and receiving growth from the bread which is his body.

The slip of a vine planted in the ground bears fruit at the proper time. The grain of wheat falls into the ground and decays only to be raised up again and multiplied by the Spirit of God who sustains all things. The Wisdom of God places these things at the service of man and when they receive God’s word they become the eucharist, which is the body and blood of Christ. In the same way our bodies, which have been nourished by the eucharist, will be buried in the earth and will decay, but they will rise again at the appointed time, for the Word of God will raise them up to the glory of God the Father. Then the Father will clothe our mortal nature in immortality and freely endow our corruptible nature with incorruptibility, for God’s power is shown most perfectly in weakness.

RESPONSORY
John 6:48-52


I am the bread of life.
Your forefathers ate manna in the desert,
and they died.
This is the bread that comes down from heaven;
anyone who eats this bread will never die, alleluia.

I am the living bread come down from heaven.
Anyone who eats this bread will live for ever.
This is the bread that comes down from heaven;
anyone who eats this bread will never die, alleluia.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

Father,
in this holy season
we come to know the full depth of your love.
You have freed us from the darkness of error and sin.
Help us to cling to your truths with fidelity.
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:

Almighty ever-living God,
let us feel your compassion more readily
during these days when, by your gift,
we have known it more fully,
so that those you have freed from the darkness of error
may cling more firmly to the teachings of your truth.
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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