thursday 27 August 2020
St Monica (331 – 387)
She was born at Thagaste in Africa of a Christian family. She was the mother of St. Augustine of Hippo, who when young was intelligent but weak in morals. With many tears she prayed unceasingly to God for his conversion and her prayers were answered shortly before she died.
Entrance Antiphon: Prov 31: 30, 28
The woman who fears the Lord will herself be praised. Her children have called her most blessed, her husband has sung her praises.
O God, who console the sorrowful and who mercifully accepted the motherly tears of Saint Monica for the conversion of her son Augustine, grant us, through the intercession of them both, that we may bitterly regret our sins and find the grace of your pardon. 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: 1 Corinthians 1:1-9
I, Paul, appointed by God to be an apostle, together with brother Sosthenes, send greetings to the church of God in Corinth, to the holy people of Jesus Christ, who are called to take their place among all the saints everywhere who pray to our Lord Jesus Christ; for he is their Lord no less than ours. May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ send you grace and peace. I never stop thanking God for all the graces you have received through Jesus Christ. I thank him that you have been enriched in so many ways, especially in your teachers and preachers; the witness to Christ has indeed been strong among you so that you will not be without any of the gifts of the Spirit while you are waiting for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed; and he will keep you steady and without blame until the last day, the day of our Lord Jesus Christ, because God by calling you has joined you to his Son, Jesus Christ; and God is faithful.
R/ I will bless your name for ever, O Lord.
- I will bless you day after day and praise your name for ever. The Lord is great, highly to be praised, his greatness cannot be measured.
- Age to age shall proclaim your works, shall declare your mighty deeds, shall speak of your splendour and glory, tell the tale of your wonderful works.
- They will speak of your terrible deeds, recount your greatness and might. They will recall your abundant goodness; age to age shall ring out your justice.
Gospel Acclamation : Jn 15:15
Alleluia, alleluia! I call you friends, says the Lord, because I have made known to you everything I have learnt from my Father. Alleluia!
Gospel: Matthew 24:42-51
Jesus said to his disciples: ‘Stay awake, because you do not know the day when your master is coming. You may be quite sure of this, that if the householder had known at what time of the night the burglar would come, he would have stayed awake and would not have allowed anyone to break through the wall of his house. Therefore, you too must stand ready because the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. ‘What sort of servant, then, is faithful and wise enough for the master to place him over his household to give them their food at the proper time? Happy that servant if his master’s arrival finds him at this employment. I tell you solemnly, he will place him over everything he owns. But as for the dishonest servant who says to himself, “My master is taking his time,” and sets about beating his fellow servants and eating and drinking with drunkards, his master will come on a day he does not expect and at an hour he does not know. The master will cut him off and send him to the same fate as the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and grinding of teeth.’
Prayer over the Offerings
We bring you these sacrificial gifts, O Lord, to commemorate Saint Monica humbly entreating that they may bestow on us both pardon and salvation. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Mt 13: 45-46
The Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant who travels in search of fine pearls and who, on finding one of great price, sold everything and bought it.
Prayer after Communion
May the working of this divine Sacrament enlighten and inflame us, almighty God, on this feast day of Saint Monica that we may be ever fervent with holy desires and abound in good works. Through Christ our Lord.
Let us be certain about which coming Christ is talking about. Is He referring to our death or about the end of the world? Both are most certainly comings of the Lord which he has left out in order to provoke a constant attention on us. But perhaps none in our generation or even those yet to come will witness the end of human life in this planet. We will all come and go in turns. And, insofar as death is concerned, it will be only once and that will be the end of our sojourn here on earth. But, while this moment is yet to come, what things are we putting in place to be on our guard? We pray that God give us the wisdom to know what to do, the skill to know how to do it and the virtue to do them. We must be on guard always.