thursday 11 June 2020
St. Barnabas the Apostle
Saint Barnabas was born in Cyprus. He accompanied Paul on his first missionary journey and later went to Cyprus with his cousin John Mark (Mark the evangelist) to preach the gospel there. He was probably martyred at Salamis in Cyprus, some time before the year 61.
Entrance Antiphon Cf. Acts 11: 24
Blessed is this holy man, who was worthy to be numbered among the Apostles, for he was a good man, filled with the Holy Spirit and with faith.
O God, who decreed that Saint Barnabas, a man filled with faith and the Holy Spirit, should be set apart to convert the nations, grant that the Gospel of Christ, which he strenuously preached, may be faithfully proclaimed by word and by deed. 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: Acts 11:21-26,13:1-3
A great number believed and were converted to the Lord. The church in Jerusalem heard about this and they sent Barnabas to Antioch. There he could see for himself that God had given grace, and this pleased him, and he urged them all to remain faithful to the Lord with heartfelt devotion; for he was a good man, filled with the Holy Spirit and with faith. And a large number of people were won over to the Lord. Barnabas then left for Tarsus to look for Saul, and when he found him he brought him to Antioch. As things turned out they were to live together in that church a whole year, instructing a large number of people. It was at Antioch that the disciples were first called ‘Christians.’ In the church at Antioch the following were prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen, who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. One day while they were offering worship to the Lord and keeping a fast, the Holy Spirit said, ‘I want Barnabas and Saul set apart for the work to which I have called them.’ So it was that after fasting and prayer they laid their hands on them and sent them off.
Psalm 97 (98) : 1-6
R/ The Lord has shown his salvation to the nations.
- Sing a new song to the Lord for he has worked wonders. His right hand and his holy arm have brought salvation.
- The Lord has made known his salvation; has shown his justice to the nations. He has remembered his truth and love for the house of Israel.
- All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God. Shout to the Lord, all the earth, ring out your joy.
- Sing psalms to the Lord with the harp with the sound of music. With trumpets and the sound of the horn acclaim the King, the Lord.
Gospel Acclamation cf. 1 Th 2:13
Alleluia, alleluia! Accept God’s message for what it really is: God’s message, and not some human thinking. Alleluia!
Gospel : Matthew 5:20-26
Jesus said to his disciples: ‘If your virtue goes no deeper than that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never get into the kingdom of heaven. ‘You have learnt how it was said to our ancestors: You must not kill; and if anyone does kill he must answer for it before the court. But I say this to you: anyone who is angry with his brother will answer for it before the court; if a man calls his brother “Fool” he will answer for it before the Sanhedrin; and if a man calls him “Renegade” he will answer for it in hell fire. So then, if you are bringing your offering to the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar, go and be reconciled with your brother first, and then come back and present your offering. Come to terms with your opponent in good time while you are still on the way to the court with him, or he may hand you over to the judge and the judge to the officer, and you will be thrown into prison. I tell you solemnly, you will not get out till you have paid the last penny.’
Prayer over the Offerings
Sanctify with your blessing, we pray, O Lord, the offerings presented here, so that by your grace they may set us on fire with the flame of your love, by which Saint Barnabas brought the light of the Gospel to the nations. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon Cf. Jn 15: 15
I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing. But I have called you friends, because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father.
Prayer after Communion
As we receive the pledge of eternal life, we humbly implore you, Lord, that what we celebrate in sacramental signs on the Memorial of the blessed Apostle Barnaba we may one day behold unveiled. Through Christ our Lord.
Jesus’ understanding of this commandment: “You must not kill” (Exodus 20:13) goes far beyond the actual killing of another person. He extends it even to anger and abusive language. Anger is a letter short of danger. Sometimes we say that as if anger is a positive thing or a virtue. No one achieves anything good in anger. It breeds destruction and devastation. No one likes to go near a hot-tempered person. We prefer to go close to people who are calm and serene, slow to anger and quick to forgive. Jesus tells us how anger can lead the Christian to judgment. Anger was part of what prevented Moses from entering the Promised Land. Remember, for any minute you are angry, you have lost sixty seconds of happiness.