monday 26 October 2020
St Chad (672)
He became abbot of Lastingham and was chosen to be bishop of Northumbria, but St Wilfrid contested his appointment, and Chad obediently withdrew. He was then sent as bishop to Mercia, He died at Lichfield on 2 March 672 and was immediately revered as a saint because of the holiness of his life, his outstanding humility, and his dedication to preaching of the Gospel.
Entrance Antiphon: Ps 104: 3-4
Let the hearts that seek the Lord rejoice; turn to the Lord and his strength; constantly seek his face.
Almighty ever-living God, increase our faith, hope and charity, and make us love what you command, so that we may merit what you promise. 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 4:32-5:8
Be friends with one another, and kind, forgiving each other as readily as God forgave you in Christ. Try, then, to imitate God as children of his that he loves and follow Christ loving as he loved you, giving himself up in our place as a fragrant offering and a sacrifice to God. Among you there must be not even a mention of fornication or impurity in any of its forms, or promiscuity: this would hardly become the saints! There must be no coarseness, or salacious talk and jokes – all this is wrong for you; raise your voices in thanksgiving instead. For you can be quite certain that nobody who actually indulges in fornication or impurity or promiscuity – which is worshipping a false god – can inherit anything of the kingdom of God. Do not let anyone deceive you with empty arguments: it is for this loose living that God’s anger comes down on those who rebel against him. Make sure that you are not included with them. You were darkness once, but now you are light in the Lord; be like children of light.
Psalm 1:1-4, 6
R/ Try to imitate God, as children of his that he loves.
- Happy indeed is the man who follows not the counsel of the wicked; nor lingers in the way of sinners nor sits in the company of scorners, but whose delight is the law of the Lord and who ponders his law day and night.
- He is like a tree that is planted beside the flowing waters, that yields its fruit in due season and whose leaves shall never fade; and all that he does shall prosper.
- Not so are the wicked, not so! For they like winnowed chaff shall be driven away by the wind. For the Lord guards the way of the just but the way of the wicked leads to doom.
Gospel Acclamation : Jn 17:17
Alleluia, alleluia! Your word is truth, O Lord: consecrate us in the truth. Alleluia!
Gospel: Luke 13:10-17
One sabbath day Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues, and a woman was there who for eighteen years had been possessed by a spirit that left her enfeebled; she was bent double and quite unable to stand upright. When Jesus saw her he called her over and said, ‘Woman, you are rid of your infirmity’ and he laid his hands on her. And at once she straightened up, and she glorified God. But the synagogue official was indignant because Jesus had healed on the sabbath, and he addressed the people present. ‘There are six days’ he said ‘when work is to be done. Come and be healed on one of those days and not on the sabbath.’ But the Lord answered him. ‘Hypocrites!’ he said ‘Is there one of you who does not untie his ox or his donkey from the manger on the sabbath and take it out for watering? And this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan has held bound these eighteen years – was it not right to untie her bonds on the sabbath day?’ When he said this, all his adversaries were covered with confusion, and all the people were overjoyed at all the wonders he worked.
Prayer over the Offerings
Look, we pray, O Lord, on the offerings we make to your majesty, that whatever is done by us in your service may be directed above all to your glory. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Ps 19: 6
We will ring out our joy at your saving help and exult in the name of our God.
Prayer after Communion
May your Sacraments, O Lord, we pray, perfect in us what lies within them, that what we now celebrate in signs we may one day possess in truth. Through Christ our Lord.
Rules are an important part of any religion or society. A wise Rabbi once said: “Everyone needs rules. If you want to see a miserable teenager find one who has no boundaries imposed on him.” But rules generally only make sense if one references their purpose. Otherwise they become entirely human artifacts that exist only for their own sake. Rules as understood and applied by the religious leader in the Gospel are entirely of the flesh; they do nothing to help us achieve the life of the spirit. The synagogue official’s error was that he lost sight of the purpose of the rule. The purpose of the rule forbidding Sabbath work was to allow everyone to glorify God at least one day a week. But understanding it as he did, it became a rule that would actually prevent one from glorifying God as Jesus did by healing the sick woman. As humans we all struggle with rules. We break and bend them, often for selfish reasons. But the greatest error is entirely losing sight of their purpose.