St Ceallach (1080 – 1129)
He became hereditary bishop of Armagh in 1105 and made many reforms; not least on his deathbed, when he abolished the hereditary principle by appointing St Malachy as his successor.
Entrance Antiphon: Cf. Ps 30: 7-8
As for me, I trust in the Lord. Let me be glad and rejoice in your mercy, for you have seen my affliction.
O God, who renew the world through mysteries beyond all telling, grant, we pray, that your Church may be guided by your eternal design and not be deprived of your help in this present age. 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.
First reading: Isaiah 65:17-21
Thus says the Lord: Now I create new heavens and a new earth, and the past will not be remembered, and will come no more to men’s minds. Be glad and rejoice for ever and ever for what I am creating, because I now create Jerusalem ‘Joy’ and her people ‘Gladness.’ I shall rejoice over Jerusalem and exult in my people. No more will the sound of weeping or the sound of cries be heard in her; in her, no more will be found the infant living a few days only, or the old man not living to the end of his days. To die at the age of a hundred will be dying young; not to live to be a hundred will be the sign of a curse. They will build houses and inhabit them, plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
Psalm 29 (30):2, 4-6, 11-13
R/ I will praise you, Lord, you have rescued me.
1) I will praise you, Lord, you have rescued me and have not let my enemies rejoice over me. O Lord, you have raised my soul from the dead, restored me to life from those who sink into the grave.
2) Sing psalms to the Lord, you who love him, give thanks to his holy name. His anger lasts a moment; his favour all through life. At night there are tears, but joy comes with dawn.
3) The Lord listened and had pity. The Lord came to my help. For me you have changed my mourning into dancing: O Lord my God, I will thank you for ever.
Gospel Acclamation: cf. Ps 129:5, 7
Praise and honour to you, Lord Jesus! My soul is waiting for the Lord, I count on his word, because with the Lord there is mercy and fullness of redemption. Praise and honour to you, Lord Jesus!
Gospel: John 4:43-54
Jesus left Samaria for Galilee. He himself had declared that there is no respect for a prophet in his own country, but on his arrival the Galileans received him well, having seen all that he had done at Jerusalem during the festival which they too had attended. He went again to Cana in Galilee, where he had changed the water into wine. Now there was a court official there whose son was ill at Capernaum and, hearing that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judaea, he went and asked him to come and cure his son as he was at the point of death. Jesus said, ‘So you will not believe unless you see signs and portents!’ ‘Sir,’ answered the official ‘come down before my child dies.’ ‘Go home,’ said Jesus ‘your son will live.’ The man believed what Jesus had said and started on his way; and while he was still on the journey back his servants met him with the news that his boy was alive. He asked them when the boy had begun to recover. ‘The fever left him yesterday’ they said ‘at the seventh hour.’ The father realised that this was exactly the time when Jesus had said, ‘Your son will live’; and he and all his household believed. This was the second sign given by Jesus, on his return from Judaea to Galilee.
Prayer over the Offerings
May we receive O Lord, we pray, the effects of this offering dedicated to you, so that we may be cleansed from old earthly ways and be renewed by growth in heavenly life. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Ez 36: 27
I will place my spirit within you and make you walk according to my laws; and my judgements you shall keep and observe, says the Lord.
Prayer after Communion
May your holy gifts, O Lord, we pray, give us life by making us new, and, by sanctifying us, lead us to things eternal. Through Christ our Lord.
Prayer over the People
Renew your people within and without, O Lord, and, since it is your will that they be unhindered by bodily delights, give them, we pray, perseverance in their spiritual intent. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Jesus recalls in this episode the difficulty of being a prophet at home and in the midst of one’s family. It is very possible that despite the signs of healing and miracles, our heart is slow to believe. Jesus’ miracles are signs that manifest the presence and power of God’s kingdom. The court official believed in Jesus’ word without doubt. We are challenged today to surrender our doubts and fears, our pride and fame at the feet of Jesus and trust in his saving word and healing love. The word of God has inherent power to heal and make us whole. The spoken word of Jesus creates faith as we see in the court official; it transforms and heals the dying son. Do you accept the authority and the power of the spoken word of God and submit to it with faith and obedience?