tuesday 11 August 2020
St Clare, Virgin (1193/4 – 1253)
St Philomena, Virgin and Martyr
Clare was born at Assisi and came under the influence of Saint Francis. She left home at the age of 18 and, under Francis’s guidance, began a community that grew to become the order of the Poor Clares. Clare was a noted contemplative and a caring mother to her nuns. She died at Assisi in 1253.
Entrance Antiphon: Ps 148:12-14
Let the virgins praise the name of the Lord, for his name alone is exalted; his splendour is above heaven and earth.
O God, who in your mercy led Saint Clare to a love of poverty, grant, through her intercession, that, following Christ in poverty of spirit, we may merit to contemplate you
one day in the heavenly Kingdom. 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: Ezekiel 2:8-3:4
I, Ezekiel, heard a voice speaking. It said, ‘You, son of man, listen to the words I say; do not be a rebel like that rebellious set. Open your mouth and eat what I am about to give you.’ I looked. A hand was there, stretching out to me and holding a scroll. He unrolled it in front of me; it was written on back and front; on it was written ‘lamentations, wailings, moanings.’ He said, ‘Son of man, eat what is given to you; eat this scroll, then go and speak to the House of Israel.’ I opened my mouth; he gave me the scroll to eat and said, ‘Son of man, feed and be satisfied by the scroll I am giving you.’ I ate it, and it tasted sweet as honey. Then he said, ‘Son of man, go to the House of Israel and tell them what I have said.’
Psalm 118(119):14, 24, 72, 103, 111, 131
R/ Your promise is sweet to my taste, O Lord.
- I rejoiced to do your will as though all riches were mine. Your will is my delight; your statutes are my counsellors.
- The law from your mouth means more to me than silver and gold. Your promise is sweeter to my taste than honey in the mouth.
- Your will is my heritage for ever, the joy of my heart. I open my mouth and I sigh as I yearn for your commands.
Gospel Acclamation : Mt 11:25
Alleluia, alleluia! Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for revealing the mysteries of the kingdom to mere children. Alleluia!
Gospel: Matthew 18:1-5, 10, 12-14
The disciples came to Jesus and said, ‘Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?’ So he called a little child to him and set the child in front of them. Then he said, ‘I tell you solemnly, unless you change and become like little children you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. And so, the one who makes himself as little as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. ‘Anyone who welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me. ‘See that you never despise any of these little ones, for I tell you that their angels in heaven are continually in the presence of my Father in heaven. ‘Tell me. Suppose a man has a hundred sheep and one of them strays; will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hillside and go in search of the stray? I tell you solemnly, if he finds it, it gives him more joy than do the ninety-nine that did not stray at all. Similarly, it is never the will of your Father in heaven that one of these little ones should be lost.’
Prayer over the Offerings
As we proclaim your wonders, O Lord, in the commemoration of the holy Virgin Saint Clare we bring you these offerings and prayers; grant, we ask, that, as her merits are pleasing to you, so, too, our dutiful service may find favour in your sight. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Mt 25: 10
The bridegroom has come, and the virgins who were ready have gone with him into the wedding feast.
Prayer after Communion
May the mysteries we have received, O Lord, on this feast day of the Virgin Saint Clare constantly bestir and enlighten us, we pray, so that we may stand ready for the coming of your Son and be admitted to his wedding feast on high. Through Christ our Lord.
Children are a perfect symbol of humility. Children are just themselves. Jesus prays that we should change our attitude in conformity to that of children. They do not aspire for greatness as we do. We already knew that the Father has a preference for the small children, but today we can recognize another wish of the Father that becomes imperative: «I assure you that unless you change and become like little children, you cannot enter the kingdom of Heaven» (Mt 18:3). Those with this childlike attitude are those to whom the kingdom of heaven belongs. What is important is for us to be as lowly (humble)as children; for he who is low has no fear of fall.