WEDNESday 26 APRIL
He sat twelve years, from 76 to 89. He was buried near St. Linus, on the Vatican, and his relics still remain in that church.
Entrance Antiphon: Cf. Ps 70: 8, 23
Let my mouth be filled with your praise, that I may sing aloud; my lips shall shout for joy, when I sing to you, alleluia.
Be present to your family, O Lord, we pray, and graciously ensure those you have endowed with the grace of faith, an eternal share in the Resurrection 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: Acts 8:1-8
That day a bitter persecution started against the Church in Jerusalem, and everyone except the apostles fled to the country districts of Judaea and Samaria. There were some devout people, however, who buried Stephen and made great mourning for him. Saul then worked for the total destruction of the Church; he went from house to house arresting both men and women and sending them to prison. Those who had escaped went from place to place preaching the Good News. One of them was Philip who went to a Samaritan town and proclaimed the Christ to them. The people united in welcoming the message Philip preached, either because they had heard of the miracles he worked or because they saw them for themselves. There were, for example, unclean spirits that came shrieking out of many who were possessed, and several paralytics and cripples were cured. As a result there was great rejoicing in that town.
R/ Cry out with joy to God, all the earth.
Cry out with joy to God all the earth, O sing to the glory of his name. O render him glorious praise. Say to God: ‘How tremendous your deeds!
Because of the greatness of your strength your enemies cringe before you. Before you all the earth shall bow; shall sing to you, sing to your name!’
Come and see the works of God, tremendous his deeds among men. He turned the sea into dry land, they passed through the river dry-shod.
Let our joy then be in him; he rules for ever by his might. His eyes keep watch over the nations: let rebels not rise against him.
Gospel Acclamation: Jn10:27
Alleluia, alleluia! The sheep that belong to me listen to my voice, says the Lord, I know them and they follow me. Alleluia!
Gospel: John 6:35-40
Jesus said to the crowd: “I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never be hungry; he who believes in me will never thirst. But, as I have told you, you can see me and still you do not believe. All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I shall not turn him away; because I have come from heaven, not to do my own will, but to do the will of the one who sent me. Now the will of him who sent me is that I should lose nothing of all that he has given to me, and that I should raise it up on the last day. Yes, it is my Father’s will that whoever sees the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and that I shall raise him up on the last day.”
Prayer over the Offerings
Grant, we pray, O Lord, that we may always find delight in these paschal mysteries, so that the renewal constantly at work within us may be the cause of our unending joy. Through Christ our Lord.
The Lord has risen and shone his light upon us, whom he has redeemed by his Blood, alleluia.
Prayer after Communion
Hear, O Lord, our prayers, that this most holy exchange, by which you have redeemed us, may bring your help in this present life and ensure for us eternal gladness. Through Christ our Lord.
Today we continue our meditation on the discourse of the bread of life. The Jews begin to murmur against Jesus for claiming to have come down from heaven because they think they know him well. But do they? It is not easy to believe that this man Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Mary and the carpenter Joseph, could be God’s own Son. Jesus continues revealing himself to his disciples and the Jews. He says: “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him” (Jn 6: 44). Faith is a gift from God. We must know how to welcome it in order to be established, in Jesus, in friendship with the Father. In Jesus is realised what was prefigured by the manna in the desert: “I am the bread of life”. He is the life of God; to eat his body and drink his blood is to acquire eternal life. At each Mass, we communicate with this sacred meal, food for our soul and pledge of our salvation. May this participation in the Eucharist preserve our faith in Jesus and lead us to bear him witness to our brothers and sisters.