Sunday 14 th august 2022
20th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Entrance Antiphon : Ps 83: 10-11
Turn your eyes, O God, our shield; and look on the face of your anointed one; one day within your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere.
O God, who have prepared for those who love you, good things which no eye can see; fill our hearts, we pray, with the warmth of your love, so that, loving you in all things and above all things, we may attain your promises which surpass every human desire. 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 : Jeremiah 38:4-6,8-10
The king’s leading men spoke to the king. ‘Let Jeremiah be put to death: he is unquestionably disheartening the remaining soldiers in the city, and all the people too, by talking like this. The fellow does not have the welfare of this people at heart so much as its ruin.’ ‘He is in your hands as you know,’ King Zedekiah answered ‘for the king is powerless against you.’ So they took Jeremiah and threw him into the well of Prince Malchiah in the Court of the Guard, letting him down with ropes. There was no water in the well, only mud, and into the mud Jeremiah sank. Ebed-melech came out from the palace and spoke to the king. ‘My lord king,’ he said ‘these men have done a wicked thing by treating the prophet Jeremiah like this: they have thrown him into the well, where he will die.’ At this the king gave Ebed-melech the Cushite the following order: ‘Take three men with you from here and pull the prophet Jeremiah out of the well before he dies.’
R/ Lord, come to my aid!
- I waited, I waited for the Lord and he stooped down to me; he heard my cry.
- He drew me from the deadly pit, from the miry clay. He set my feet upon a rock and made my footsteps firm.
- He put a new song into my mouth, praise of our God. Many shall see and fear and shall trust in the Lord.
- As for me, wretched and poor, the Lord thinks of me. You are my rescuer, my help, O God, do not delay
Second reading : Hebrews 12:1-4
With so many witnesses in a great cloud on every side of us, we too, then, should throw off everything that hinders us, especially the sin that clings so easily, and keep running steadily in the race we have started. Let us not lose sight of Jesus, who leads us in our faith and brings it to perfection: for the sake of the joy which was still in the future, he endured the cross, disregarding the shamefulness of it, and from now on has taken his place at the right of God’s throne. Think of the way he stood such opposition from sinners and then you will not give up for want of courage. In the fight against sin, you have not yet had to keep fighting to the point of death.
Gospel Acclamation : cf.Ac16:14
Alleluia, alleluia! Open our heart, O Lord, to accept the words of your Son. Alleluia!
Gospel : Luke 12:49-53
Jesus said to his disciples: ‘I have come to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were blazing already! There is a baptism I must still receive, and how great is my distress till it is over! ‘Do you suppose that I am here to bring peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. For from now on a household of five will be divided: three against two and two against three; the father divided against the son, son against father, mother against daughter, daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law, daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.’
Prayer over the Offerings
Receive our oblation, O Lord, by which is brought about a glorious exchange, that, by offering what you have given, we may merit to receive your very self. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon : Ps 129: 7
With the Lord there is mercy; in him is plentiful redemption.
Prayer after Communion
Made partakers of Christ through these Sacraments, we humbly implore your mercy, Lord, that, conformed to his image on earth, we may merit also to be his coheirs in heaven. Who lives and reigns for ever and ever.
“I have come to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were blazing already!” When someone in a public building cries FIRE, it would probably produce fear and a great commotion. On the other hand, in cold areas, fire arouses warm emotions. Fire is used in rural areas for cooking food. It is around the fire that we roast corn, cocoyams, plantains, etc. In effect, fire connotes what is good, but it also connotes what can destroy. In our Gospel today, Jesus says he has come to bring fire on earth, and he wishes that it should be burning. The fire evoked by Jesus can be the fire of God’s anger, directed at the vices in our world today: injustice, oppression, faithlessness, lack of trust in God etc. This fire has to burn away until what is precious and beautiful is revealed. On a more positive note, it is also the fire that edifies us so that we are transformed into the likeness of Christ. The fire has also come to signify the transforming power of the Holy Spirit.