St Laurence (258)
Laurence was one of the seven deacons of the Church of Rome and was executed on 10th August 258, four days after Sixtus II and his companions. He was probably a Spaniard from Toledo.
This is the blessed Lawrence who gave himself up for the treasure of the Church: for this he earned the suffering of martyrdom to ascend with joy to the Lord Jesus Christ.
O God, giver of that ardour of love for you by which Saint Lawrence was outstandingly faithful in service and glorious in martyrdom, grant that we may love what he loved and put into practice what he taught. 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 9:6-10
Do not forget: thin sowing means thin reaping; the more you sow, the more you reap. Each one should give what he has decided in his own mind, not grudgingly or because he is made to, for God loves a cheerful giver. And there is no limit to the blessings which God can send you – he will make sure that you will always have all you need for yourselves in every possible circumstance, and still have something to spare for all sorts of good works. As Scripture says: He was free in almsgiving, and gave to the poor: his good deeds will never be forgotten. The one who provides seed for the sower and bread for food will provide you with all the seed you want and make the harvest of your good deeds a larger one.
R/Happy the man who takes pity and lends.
- Happy the man who fears the Lord, who takes delight in all his commands. His sons will be powerful on earth; the children of the upright are blessed.
- The good man takes pity and lends, he conducts his affairs with honour. The just man will never waver: he will be remembered for ever.
- He has no fear of evil news; with a firm heart he trusts in the Lord. With a steadfast heart he will not fear; he will see the downfall of his foes.
- Open-handed, he gives to the poor; his justice stands firm for ever. His head will be raised in glory.
Gospel Acclamation : Jn8:12bc
Alleluia, alleluia! I am the light of the world, says the Lord; anyone who follows me will have the light of life. Alleluia!
Gospel: John 12:24-26
I tell you, most solemnly, unless a wheat grain falls on the ground and dies, it remains only a single grain; but if it dies, it yields a rich harvest. Anyone who loves his life loses it; anyone who hates his life in this world will keep it for the eternal life. If a man serves me, he must follow me, wherever I am, my servant will be there too. If anyone serves me, my Father will honour him.
Prayer over the Offerings
Receive with favour, O Lord, the offerings we joyfully make on the feast day of Saint Lawrence and grant that they become a help to our salvation. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Cf. Jn 12: 26
Whoever serves me must follow me and where I am there also will my servant be, says the Lord.
Prayer after Communion
Nourished by these sacred gifts, we humbly implore you, Lord, that the homage of dutiful service, which we render on the feast of Saint Lawrence, may bring us an increase of your saving grace. Through Christ our Lord.
St. Paul, in today’s first reading, advices the Christians of Corinth to demonstrate Christian love by helping the poor and the needy. He reminds them, and us, that God admires a cheerful giver and the more we are charitable to our brethren in need, the more God will endow us with his divine love and blessings. Jesus Christ further reminds us firmly that his Heavenly Father will honour those who follow and serve him. How can we be servants of Jesus? Anybody who believes in him and does his will is a servant of Christ and the greatest commandment Christ has given us is to love one another as he has loved us. Because Christ even loved us when we were still sinners. (Rm. 5:8)