November 13

Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini (1850 – 1917)

She was born in Lombardy. Because of her frail health she was refused admission to two convents. She devoted herself to teaching, and founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. She founded 67 institutions across the United States, South America and Europe. She died of malaria at Chicago in 1917.

Entrance Antiphon : Cf. Ps 87: 3

Let my prayer come into your presence. Incline your ear to my cry for help, O Lord.

Collect

Almighty and merciful God, graciously keep from us all adversity, so that, unhindered in mind and body alike, we may pursue, in freedom of heart, the things that are yours. 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: Titus 2:1-8,11-14

It is for you to preach the behaviour which goes with healthy doctrine. The older men should be reserved, dignified, moderate, sound in faith and love and constancy. Similarly, the older women should behave as though they were religious, with no scandal-mongering and no habitual wine-drinking – they are to be the teachers of the right behaviour and show the younger women how they should love their husbands and love their children, how they are to be sensible and chaste, and how to work in their homes, and be gentle, and do as their husbands tell them, so that the message of God is never disgraced. In the same way, you have got to persuade the younger men to be moderate and in everything you do make yourself an example to them of working for good: when you are teaching, be an example to them in your sincerity and earnestness and in keeping all that you say so wholesome that nobody can make objections to it; and then any opponent will be at a loss, with no accusation to make against us. You see, God’s grace has been revealed, and it has made salvation possible for the whole human race and taught us that what we have to do is to give up everything that does not lead to God, and all our worldly ambitions; we must be self-restrained and live good and religious lives here in this present world, while we are waiting in hope for the blessing which will come with the Appearing of the glory of our great God and Saviour, Christ Jesus. He sacrificed himself for us in order to set us free from all wickedness and to purify a people so that it could be his very own and would have no ambition except to do good.

Psalm 36:3-4,18,23,27,29

R/ The salvation of the just comes from the Lord.

  1. If you trust in the Lord and do good, then you will live in the land and be secure. If you find your delight in the Lord, he will grant your heart’s desire.
  2. He protects the lives of the upright, their heritage will last for ever. The Lord guides the steps of a man and makes safe the path of one he loves.
  3. Then turn away from evil and do good and you shall have a home for ever; The just shall inherit the land; there they shall live for ever.

Gospel Acclamation : Mt4:4

Alleluia, alleluia! Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God. Alleluia!

Gospel: Luke 17:7-10

Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Which of you, with a servant ploughing or minding sheep, would say to him when he returned from the fields, “Come and have your meal immediately”? Would he not be more likely to say, “Get my supper laid; make yourself tidy and wait on me while I eat and drink. You can eat and drink yourself afterwards”? Must he be grateful to the servant for doing what he was told? So with you: when you have done all you have been told to do, say, “We are merely servants: we have done no more than our duty.”’

Prayer over the Offerings

Look with favour, we pray, O Lord, upon the sacrificial gifts offered here, that, celebrating in mystery the Passion of your Son, we may honour it with loving devotion. Through Christ our Lord.

Communion Antiphon : Cf. Ps 22: 1-2

The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want. Fresh and green are the pastures where he gives me repose, near restful waters he leads me.

Prayer after Communion

Nourished by this sacred gift, O Lord, we give you thanks and beseech your mercy, that, by the pouring forth of your Spirit, the grace of integrity may endure in those your heavenly power has entered. Through Christ our Lord.

Reflection

In many Cameroonian cultures, it is conventional for a woman to till the soil and cultivate the crops that will nourish her family. On a daily basis, when she comes back from the farm, she has to heat water for her husband’s bath, bathe the children, cook food for the family and then take care of her own bath. The man, who may have been idling about all day and possibly drinking, does not lift a finger to help his wife because, according to tradition, that is her duty. In the Gospel passage of today, Jesus paints a similar picture: Must the master be grateful to the servant for doing his duty? In Mark 12:31, Jesus tells his disciples: “Love your neighbour as yourself”. The love of neighbour challenges us to service, the kind of service that lightens the burden of our brothers and sisters.