20th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Psalter week IV
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: Isaiah 56:1,6-7
Thus says the Lord: Have a care for justice, act with integrity, for soon my salvation will come and my integrity be manifest. Foreigners who have attached themselves to the Lord to serve him and to love his name and be his servants – all who observe the Sabbath, not profaning it, and cling to my covenant – these I will bring to my holy mountain. I will make them joyful in my house of prayer. Their holocausts and their sacrifices will be accepted on my altar, for my house will be called a house of prayer for all the peoples.
R/ Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you.
O God, be gracious and bless us and let your face shed its light upon us. So will your ways be known upon earth and all nations learn your saving help.
Let the nations be glad and exult for you rule the world with justice. With fairness you rule the peoples, you guide the nations on earth.
Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you. May God still give us his blessing till the ends of the earth revere him.
Second reading: Romans 11:13-15,29-32
Let me tell you pagans this: I have been sent to the pagans as their apostle, and I am proud of being sent, but the purpose of it is to make my own people envious of you, and in this way save some of them. Since their rejection meant the reconciliation of the world, do you know what their admission will mean? Nothing less than a resurrection from the dead! God never takes back his gifts or revokes his choice. Just as you changed from being disobedient to God, and now enjoy mercy because of their disobedience, so those who are disobedient now – and only because of the mercy shown to you – will also enjoy mercy eventually. God has imprisoned all men in their own disobedience only to show mercy to all mankind.
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: Matthew 15:21-28
Jesus left Gennesaret and withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. Then out came a Canaanite woman from that district and started shouting, “Sir, Son of David, take pity on me. My daughter is tormented by a devil.” But he answered her not a word. And his disciples went and pleaded with him. “Give her what she wants,” they said, “because she is shouting after us.” He said in reply, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the House of Israel.” But the woman had come up and was kneeling at his feet. “Lord,” she said, “help me.” He replied, “It is not fair to take the children’s food and throw it to the house-dogs.” She retorted, “Ah yes, sir; but even house-dogs can eat the scraps that fall from their master’s table.” Then Jesus answered her, “Woman, you have great faith. Let your wish be granted.” And from that moment her daughter was well again.
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.
What an extraordinary story! While the woman remains firm, it is Jesus who seems to change his mind. First he ignores her, she insists, he rebuffs her in a hurtful way. But then this is only to make known her extraordinary faith. What faith! She is a woman who could not be more foreign, she is from a tribe hostile to the Jews. Despite the snubs, she is tenacious and persists in her request to heal her daughter. She defies the narrowness of a tradition that limited God’s mercy to the chosen few, and she is generously rewarded. The crowd and the apostles learned that day that the Lord came for all, Jews and non-Jews alike. How often do I judge people too quickly?