thursday 15 October 2020
St Teresa of Ávila (1515 – 1582)
She was born in Ávila in Spain and entered the Carmelite convent there at the age of 20. St Teresa is an outstanding example of how the contemplative life can well up and overflow into action. She wrote much on the subject of contemplative prayer and her writings are still standard works today. She was declared a Doctor of the Church by Pope Paul VI in 1970.
Entrance Antiphon: Cf. Ps 41: 2-3
Like the deer that yearns for running streams, so my soul is yearning for you, my God; my soul is thirsting for God, the living God.
O God, who through your Spirit raised up Saint Teresa of Jesus to show the Church the way to seek perfection, grant that we may always be nourished by the food of her heavenly teaching and fired with longing for true holiness. 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 : Ephesians 1:1-10
From Paul, appointed by God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, to the saints who are faithful to Christ Jesus. Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed be God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all the spiritual blessings of heaven in Christ. Before the world was made, he chose us, chose us in Christ, to be holy and spotless, and to live through love in his presence, determining that we should become his adopted sons, through Jesus Christ for his own kind purposes, to make us praise the glory of his grace, his free gift to us in the Beloved, in whom, through his blood, we gain our freedom, the forgiveness of our sins. Such is the richness of the grace which he has showered on us in all wisdom and insight. He has let us know the mystery of his purpose, the hidden plan he so kindly made in Christ from the beginning to act upon when the times had run their course to the end: that he would bring everything together under Christ, as head, everything in the heavens and everything on earth.
R/ The Lord has shown his salvation.
- 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 : Ps 110:7, 8
Alleluia, alleluia! Your precepts, O Lord, are all of them sure; they stand firm for ever and ever. Alleluia!
Gospel : Luke 11:47-54
Jesus said: ‘Alas for you who build the tombs of the prophets, the men your ancestors killed! In this way you both witness what your ancestors did and approve it; they did the killing, you do the building. ‘And that is why the Wisdom of God said, “I will send them prophets and apostles; some they will slaughter and persecute, so that this generation will have to answer for every prophet’s blood that has been shed since the foundation of the world, from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was murdered between the altar and the sanctuary.” Yes, I tell you, this generation will have to answer for it all. ‘Alas for you lawyers who have taken away the key of knowledge! You have not gone in yourselves, and have prevented others going in who wanted to.’ When he left the house, the scribes and the Pharisees began a furious attack on him and tried to force answers from him on innumerable questions, setting traps to catch him out in something he might say.
Prayer over the Offerings
May our offerings, O Lord, be acceptable to your majesty, to whom the devoted service of Saint Teresa was pleasing in such great measure. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Ps 88: 2
I will sing for ever of your mercies, O Lord through all ages my mouth will proclaim your fidelity.
Prayer after Communion
Grant, O Lord our God, that your obedient family, whom you have fed with the Bread of heaven, may follow the example of Saint Teresa and rejoice to sing of your mercies for all eternity. Through Christ our Lord.
Paul’s letter to the Ephesians is useful for both understanding God’s concern towards us and living our daily Christian lives. In effect, from the beginning of creation, God destined that humans be God’s children in His Son Jesus Christ. There is no space for humans outside this design or outside this relationship with Jesus Christ. The death and resurrection of Christ in order to liberate humans from their sins is part of this design. This is what Christians should principally believe in, meditate upon and never lose sight of, in order to lead a good life, cherishing all the while, God’s design with sentiments of gratitude. God’s plan is to “bring all things in the heavens and on earth into one under the headship of Christ.” Jesus promised: “And I — once I am lifted up from earth — will draw all men to Myself” (Jn 12:32). We must let ourselves be drawn to Jesus and then be in right relationship with Him, the Head of His body.