SATURDAY 25 JULY 2020 (Saint James, Apostle – Feast )

Saint James, Apostle – Feast 

Liturgical Colour: Red.

 

Entrance Antiphon | Cf. Mt 4: 18, 21

As he walked by the Sea of Galilee,

Jesus saw James the son of Zebedee and John his brother

mending their nets and he called them.

 

Collect

Almighty ever-living God,

who consecrated the first fruits of your Apostles

by the blood of Saint James,

grant, we pray,

that your Church may be strengthened by his confession of faith

and constantly sustained by his protection.

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 | 2 Corinthians 4:7-15 ·

Such an overwhelming power comes from God and not from us

We are only the earthenware jars that hold this treasure, to make it clear that such an overwhelming power comes from God and not from us. We are in difficulties on all sides, but never cornered; we see no answer to our problems, but never despair; we have been persecuted, but never deserted; knocked down, but never killed; always, wherever we may be, we carry with us in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus, too, may always be seen in our body. Indeed, while we are still alive, we are consigned to our death every day, for the sake of Jesus, so that in our mortal flesh the life of Jesus, too, may be openly shown. So death is at work in us, but life in you.

But as we have the same spirit of faith that is mentioned in scripture – I believed, and therefore I spoke – we too believe and therefore we too speak, knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus to life will raise us with Jesus in our turn, and put us by his side and you with us. You see, all this is for your benefit, so that the more grace is multiplied among people, the more thanksgiving there will be, to the glory of God.

 

Responsorial Psalm | Psalm 125(126):1-6

R/ Those who are sowing in tears will sing when they reap.

 

When the Lord delivered Zion from bondage,

it seemed like a dream.

Then was our mouth filled with laughter,

on our lips there were songs.

 

Those who are sowing in tears will sing when they reap.

The heathens themselves said: ‘What marvels

the Lord worked for them!’

What marvels the Lord worked for us!

Indeed we were glad.

 

Those who are sowing in tears will sing when they reap.

Deliver us, O Lord, from our bondage

as streams in dry land.

Those who are sowing in tears

will sing when they reap.

 

Those who are sowing in tears will sing when they reap.

They go out, they go out, full of tears,

carrying seed for the sowing:

they come back, they come back, full of song,

carrying their sheaves.

Those who are sowing in tears will sing when they reap.

 

Gospel Acclamation | cf.Jn15:16

Alleluia, alleluia!

I chose you from the world

to go out and bear fruit,

fruit that will last,

says the Lord.

Alleluia!

 

Gospel | Matthew 20:20-28

‘Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?’

The mother of the sons of Zebedee came to Jesus with her sons to make a request of him, and bowed low; and he said to her, ‘What is it you want?’ She said to him, ‘Promise that these two sons of mine may sit one at your right hand and the other at your left in your kingdom.’ ‘You do not know what you are asking’ Jesus answered. ‘Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?’ They replied, ‘We can.’ ‘Very well,’ he said ‘you shall drink my cup, but as for seats at my right hand and my left, these are not mine to grant; they belong to those to whom they have been allotted by my Father.’

When the other ten heard this they were indignant with the two brothers. But Jesus called them to him and said, ‘You know that among the pagans the rulers lord it over them, and their great men make their authority felt. This is not to happen among you. No; anyone who wants to be great among you must be your servant, and anyone who wants to be first among you must be your slave, just as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.’

 

Meditation

Nothing good, they say, comes easy.  pregnant woman labours in pains, but once delivered of the baby, she is filled with joy and smiles. Memories of the of the pains are gone, what is left is the fruit of the labour, that is joy! Good tidings come as fruits of tears. So will the psalmist say: “Those who are sowing in tears will sing when they reap.” Our Christian life is like a race to get the crown of salvation reserved not for who comes first, but who arrives. During the race, we are afflicted, perplexed, persecuted, struck down at different stages, but the crown keeps us going. James who accepted he could drink the cup his master would drink was the first of the Apostles to be put to death (Act 12: 1 – 3) because he kept working to maintain the persecuted faith of the early Christians.

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