tuesday 18 February 2020
In St. Matthew’s Gospel, we read of St. Simon who is described as one of our Lord’s brethren or kinsmen. He is one of those brethren of Christ who are mentioned in the Acts of the Apostles as having received the Holy Spirit on Pentecost.
Entrance Antiphon: Ps 30: 3-4
Be my protector, O God, a mighty stronghold to save me. For you are my rock, my stronghold! Lead me, guide me, for the sake of your name.
O God, who teach us that you abide in hearts that are just and true, grant that we may be so fashioned by your grace as to become a dwelling pleasing to you. 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: James 1:12-18
Happy the man who stands firm when trials come. He has proved himself, and will win the prize of life, the crown that the Lord has promised to those who love him. Never, when you have been tempted, say, ‘God sent the temptation’; God cannot be tempted to do anything wrong, and he does not tempt anybody. Everyone who is tempted is attracted and seduced by his own wrong desire. Then the desire conceives and gives birth to sin, and when sin is fully grown, it too has a child, and the child is death. Make no mistake about this, my dear brothers: it is all that is good, everything that is perfect, which is given us from above; it comes down from the Father of all light; with him there is no such thing as alteration, no shadow of a change. By his own choice he made us his children by the message of the truth so that we should be a sort of first-fruits of all that he had created.
R/ Happy the man whom you teach, O Lord.
- Happy the man whom you teach, O Lord, whom you train by means of your law; to him you give peace in evil days while the pit is being dug for the wicked.
- The Lord will not abandon his people nor forsake those who are his own; for judgement shall again be just and all true hearts shall uphold it.
- When I think: ‘I have lost my foothold’; your mercy, Lord, holds me up. When cares increase in my heart your consolation calms my soul.
Gospel Acclamation : Ac 16:14
Alleluia, alleluia! Open our heart, O Lord, to accept the words of your Son. Alleluia!
Gospel: Mark 8:14-21
The disciples had forgotten to take any food and they had only one loaf with them in the boat. Then he gave them this warning, ‘Keep your eyes open; be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and the yeast of Herod.’ And they said to one another, ‘It is because we have no bread.’ And Jesus knew it, and he said to them, ‘Why are you talking about having no bread? Do you not yet understand? Have you no perception? Are your minds closed? Have you eyes that do not see, ears that do not hear? Or do you not remember? When I broke the five loaves among the five thousand, how many baskets full of scraps did you collect?’ They answered, ‘Twelve.’ ‘And when I broke the seven loaves for the four thousand, how many baskets full of scraps did you collect?’ And they answered, ‘Seven.’ Then he said to them, ‘Are you still without perception?’
Prayer over the Offerings
May this oblation, O Lord, we pray, cleanse and renew us and may it become for those who do your will the source of eternal reward. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Ps 77: 29-30
They ate and had their fill, and what they craved the Lord gave them; they were not disappointed in what they craved.
Prayer after Communion
Having fed upon these heavenly delights, we pray, O Lord, so that we may always long for that food by which we truly live. Through Christ our Lord.
Prayer over the People
May bountiful blessing, O Lord, we pray, come down upon your people, that hope may grow in tribulation, virtue be strengthened in temptation, and eternal redemption be assured. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
In the first reading, Saint James says, “Happy the man who stands firm when trials come. He has proved himself, and will win the prize of life, the crown that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” Of course, God invites each one of us to know Him, love Him, and serve Him here on earth so as to be happy with Him for ever in heaven. When we choose to be close to God, even trials cannot break us, for nothing is stronger than God Himself. When we choose to drift away from God, we become authors of our own downfall, as Saint James tells us: “Everyone who is tempted is attracted and seduced by his own wrong desire. Then the desire conceives and gives birth to sin, and when sin is fully grown, it too has a child, and the child is death.”