Monday 05 th december 2022
St Birinus was sent to England as a missionary by Pope Honorius I about the year 634. He died about 650 and the main Church of the West Saxons which he had established at Dorchester-on-Thames, was later moved to Winchester, as were the relics of Saint Birinus.
Entrance Antiphon : Cf. Jer 31: 10; Is 35: 4
Hear the word of the Lord, O nations; declare it to the distant lands: Behold, our Saviour will come; you need no longer fear.
May our prayer of petition rise before you, we pray, O Lord, that, with purity unblemished, we, your servants, may come as we desire, to celebrate the great mystery of the Incarnation of your Only Begotten Son. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
First reading : Isaiah 35:1-10
Let the wilderness and the dry-lands exult, let the wasteland rejoice and bloom, let it bring forth flowers like the jonquil, let it rejoice and sing for joy. The glory of Lebanon is bestowed on it, the splendour of Carmel and Sharon; they shall see the glory of the Lord, the splendour of our God. Strengthen all weary hands, steady all trembling knees and say to all faint hearts, ‘Courage! Do not be afraid. ‘Look, your God is coming, vengeance is coming, the retribution of God; he is coming to save you.’ Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, the ears of the deaf unsealed, then the lame shall leap like a deer and the tongues of the dumb sing for joy; for water gushes in the desert, streams in the wasteland, the scorched earth becomes a lake, the parched land springs of water. The lairs where the jackals used to live become thickets of reed and papyrus. And through it will run a highway undefiled which shall be called the Sacred Way; the unclean may not travel by it, nor fools stray along it. No lion will be there nor any fierce beast roam about it, but the redeemed will walk there, for those whom the Lord has ransomed shall return. They will come to Zion shouting for joy, everlasting joy on their faces; joy and gladness will go with them and sorrow and lament be ended.
Psalm: Ps 84
R/ Look, our God is coming to save us.
- I will hear what the Lord God has to say, a voice that speaks of peace, peace for his people. His help is near for those who fear him and his glory will dwell in our land.
- Mercy and faithfulness have met; justice and peace have embraced. Faithfulness shall spring from the earth and justice look down from heaven.
- The Lord will make us prosper and our earth shall yield its fruit. Justice shall march before him and peace shall follow his steps.
Gospel Acclamation : Lk 3:4.6
Alleluia, alleluia! Prepare a way for the Lord, make his paths straight. And all mankind shall see the salvation of God. Alleluia!
Gospel : Luke 5:17-26
Jesus was teaching one day, and among the audience there were Pharisees and Doctors of the Law who had come from every village in Galilee, from Judaea and from Jerusalem. And the Power of the Lord was behind his works of healing. Then some men appeared, carrying on a bed a paralysed man whom they were trying to bring in and lay down in front of him. But as the crowd made it impossible to find a way of getting him in, they went up on to the flat roof and lowered him and his stretcher down through the tiles into the middle of the gathering, in front of Jesus. Seeing their faith he said, ‘My friend, your sins are forgiven you.’ The Scribes and the Pharisees began to think this over. ‘Who is this man talking blasphemy? Who can forgive sins but God alone?’ But Jesus, aware of their thoughts, made them this reply, ‘What are these thoughts you have in your hearts? Which of these is easier: to say, “Your sins are forgiven you” or to say “Get up and walk”? But to prove to you that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins’, – he said to the paralysed man – ‘I order you: get up, and pick up your stretcher and go home.’ And immediately before their very eyes he got up, picked up what he had been lying on and went home praising God. They were all astounded and praised God, and were filled with awe, saying, ‘We have seen strange things today.’
Prayer over the Offerings
Accept, we pray, O Lord, these offerings we make, gathered from among your gifts to us, and may what you grant us to celebrate devoutly here below, gain for us the prize of eternal redemption. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon : Ps 105:4-5; Is 38: 3
Come, O Lord, visit us in peace, that we may rejoice before you with a blameless heart.
Prayer after Communion
May these mysteries, O Lord, in which we have participated, profit us, we pray, for even now, as we walk amid passing things, you teach us by them to love the things of heaven and hold fast to what endures. Through Christ our Lord.
A Christian is supposed to be a happy person. The joy in Christianity does not come from the absence of pain and suffering, but from the assurance that we will not face them alone and that with Jesus we are sure to overcome them. Isaiah declares in the First Reading that when God comes, weary hands are strengthened, trembling knees are steadied and faint hearts are encouraged. This prophecy is accomplished by Jesus Christ; in the Gospel, he forgives the sins of the paralysed man and restores his health. Human life is a quest for happiness, and only Jesus can give us true happiness. If we have faith in him, he will calm our storms, wipe our tears and give us the peace and joy we all seek.