Saturday 03 rd december 2022
St. Francis Xavier
(1506 – 1552)
He was born in Spain, 1506 and ordained a priest in 1537. In 1541 the Pope sent him as part of a mission to India, and he spent the rest of his life in the East. He died of fever and exhaustion on the Chinese island of Shangchwan in 1552.
Entrance Antiphon : Ps 17: 50; 21: 23
I will praise you, Lord, among the nations; I will tell of your name to my kin.
O God, who through the preaching of Saint Francis Xavier won many peoples to yourself, grant that the hearts of the faithful may burn with the same zeal for the faith and that Holy Church may everywhere rejoice in an abundance of offspring. 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 : Isaiah 30:19-21,23-26
Thus says the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel: People of Zion, you will live in Jerusalem and weep no more. He will be gracious to you when he hears your cry; when he hears he will answer. When the Lord has given you the bread of suffering and the water of distress, he who is your teacher will hide no longer, and you will see your teacher with your own eyes. Whether you turn to right or left, your ears will hear these words behind you, ‘This is the way, follow it.’ He will send rain for the seed you sow in the ground, and the bread that the ground provides will be rich and nourishing. Your cattle will graze, that day, in wide pastures. Oxen and donkeys that till the ground will eat a salted fodder, winnowed with shovel and fork. On every lofty mountain, on every high hill there will be streams and watercourses, on the day of the great slaughter when the strongholds fall. Then moonlight will be bright as sunlight and sunlight itself be seven times brighter – like the light of seven days in one – on the day the Lord dresses the wound of his people and heals the bruises his blows have left.
R/ Happy are all who hope in the Lord.
- Praise the Lord for he is good; sing to our God for he is loving: to him our praise is due. The Lord builds up Jerusalem and brings back Israel’s exiles.
- He heals the broken-hearted, he binds up all their wounds. He fixes the number of the stars; he calls each one by its name.
- Our Lord is great and almighty; his wisdom can never be measured.The Lord raises the lowly; he humbles the wicked to the dust.
Gospel Acclamation : Is 55:6
Alleluia, alleluia! Seek the Lord while he is still to be found, call to him while he is still near.Alleluia!
Gospel : Matthew 9:35-10:1,5,6-8
Jesus made a tour through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the Good News of the kingdom and curing all kinds of diseases and sickness.And when he saw the crowds he felt sorry for them because they were harassed and dejected, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, ‘The harvest is rich but the labourers are few, so ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers to his harvest.’ He summoned his twelve disciples, and gave them authority over unclean spirits with power to cast them out and to cure all kinds of diseases and sickness. These twelve Jesus sent out, instructing them as follows: ‘Go rather to the lost sheep of the House of Israel. And as you go, proclaim that the kingdom of heaven is close at hand. Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out devils. You received without charge, give without charge.’
Prayer over the Offerings
Receive, O Lord, these offerings we bring you in commemoration of Saint Francis Xavier, and grant that, as he journeyed to distant lands out of longing for the salvation of souls, so we, too, bearing effective witness to the Gospel, may, with our brothers and sisters, eagerly hasten towards you. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon : Mt 10: 27
What I say to you in the darkness speak in the light, says the Lord, what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops.
Prayer after Communion
May your mysteries, O God, kindle in us that fire of charity with which Saint Francis Xavier burned for the salvation of souls, so that, walking ever more worthily in our vocation, we may obtain with him the reward you promise to those who labour well in your harvest. Through Christ our Lord.
Jesus’ last command before leaving this world was, “Go out to the whole world; proclaim the Good News to all creation.” The Good News is not a gift that we should keep to ourselves; we must share it with others. This is why St. Paul says it is a duty to preach the Good News. We must make Jesus known and loved around us. Those who meet us and interact with us should discover the love of God, made manifest in Jesus, through our words and actions. Our very lifestyle should be a Gospel which we preach to the world. It is a task that we cannot run away from; to be a Christian is to be a missionary.