SAINT CYRIL OF ALEXANDRIA
St. Cyril of Alexandria, Bishop and Doctor of the Church was born at Alexandria, Egypt. He was nephew of the patriarch of that city, Theophilus. Cyril wrote treatises that clarified the doctrines of the Trinity and the Incarnation from heretical interpretations.
Entrance Antiphon: Cf. Ps 27: 8-9
The Lord is the strength of his people, a saving refuge for the one he has anointed. Save your people, Lord, and bless your heritage, and govern them for ever.
Grant, O Lord, that we may always revere and love your holy name, for you never deprive of your guidance those you set firm on the foundation of your love. 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: Genesis 13: 2, 5-18
Abram was a very rich man, with livestock, silver and gold. Lot, who was travelling with Abram, had flocks and cattle of his own, and tents too. The land was not sufficient to accommodate them both at once, for they had too many possessions to be able to live together. Dispute broke out between the herdsmen of Abram’s livestock and those of Lot’s. (The Canaanites and the Perizzites were then living in the land.) Accordingly Abram said to Lot, ‘Let there be no dispute between me and you, nor between my herdsmen and yours, for we are brothers. Is not the whole land open before you? Part company with me: if you take the left, I will go right; if you take the right, I will go left.’ Looking round, Lot saw all the Jordan plain, irrigated everywhere – this was before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah – like the garden of the Lord or the land of Egypt, as far as Zoar. So Lot chose all the Jordan plain for himself and moved off eastwards. Thus they parted company: Abram settled in the land of Canaan; Lot settled among the towns of the plain, pitching his tents on the outskirts of Sodom. Now the people of Sodom were vicious men, great sinners against the Lord. The Lord said to Abram after Lot had parted company with him, ‘Look all round from where you are towards the north and the south, towards the east and the west. All the land within sight I will give to you and your descendants for ever. I will make your descendants like the dust on the ground: when men succeed in counting the specks of dust on the ground, then they will be able to count your descendants! Come, travel through the length and breadth of the land, for I mean to give it to you.’ So Abram went with his tents to settle at the Oak of Mamre, at Hebron, and there he built an altar to the Lord.
Psalm 14 (15): 2-5
R/ The just will live in the presence of the Lord.
Lord, who shall dwell on your holy mountain? He who walks without fault; he who acts with justice and speaks the truth from his heart; he who does not slander with his tongue.
He who does no wrong to his brother, who casts no slur on his neighbour, who holds the godless in disdain, but honours those who fear the Lord.
He who keeps his pledge, come what may; who takes no interest on a loan and accepts no bribes against the innocent. Such a man will stand firm for ever.
Gospel Acclamation: Mt 11: 25
Alleluia, alleluia! Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for revealing the mysteries of the kingdom to mere children. Alleluia!
Gospel: Matthew 7:6,12-14
Jesus said to his disciples: ‘Do not give dogs what is holy; and do not throw your pearls in front of pigs, or they may trample them and then turn on you and tear you to pieces. ‘So always treat others as you would like them to treat you; that is the meaning of the Law and the Prophets. ‘Enter by the narrow gate, since the road that leads to perdition is wide and spacious, and many take it; but it is a narrow gate and a hard road that leads to life, and only a few find it.’
Prayer over the Offerings
Receive, O Lord, the sacrifice of conciliation and praise, and grant that, cleansed by its action, we may make offering of a heart pleasing to you. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Ps 144: 15
The eyes of all look to you, Lord, and you give them their food in due season.
Prayer after Communion
Renewed and nourished by the Sacred Body and Precious Blood of your Son, we ask of your mercy, O Lord, that what we celebrate with constant devotion may be our sure pledge of redemption. Through Christ our Lord.
Jesus comes today to preach gentleness and to show us an example, but in his eyes, naivety is not a virtue, especially when it compromises his message. Only God has the power to wisely shake up man’s reticence. As for us who are only messengers, our testimony requires a lot of discernment. For there are deadlines that we cannot shorten, crises that we must respect. One of our greatest miseries that we deal with all day long is that we bring everything down to our desires. From this comes most of our sadness: we expect everything from others and we resent them for not giving us everything; we would like to be recognised, to be valued, to be appreciated in our tastes or choices. However, Jesus Christ asks us not to let ourselves be served, but to serve and give our life; not to be carried, but to carry the burden of our brother; not to be understood, but to understand the other. Give us your Spirit, Lord, and come to act in each of us.