He was born in Trier, Germany, between 337 and 340. Coerced by the people and by the emperor, he was baptized, ordained, and installed as bishop in 374. Ambrose was a key figure in the conversion of St Augustine to Catholicism, impressing Augustine by his intelligence and scholarship. He died on Holy Saturday, 4 April 397.
Entrance Antiphon: Sir 15: 5
In the midst of the Church he opened his mouth, and the Lord filled him with the spirit of wisdom and understanding and clothed him in a robe of glory.
O God, who made the Bishop Saint Ambrose a teacher of the Catholic faith and a model of apostolic courage, raise up in your Church men after your own heart to govern her with courage and wisdom. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.
First reading: Isaiah 26: 1-6
That day, this song will be sung in the land of Judah: We have a strong city; to guard us he has set wall and rampart about us. Open the gates! Let the upright nation come in, she, the faithful one whose mind is steadfast, who keeps the peace, because she trusts in you. Trust in the Lord for ever, for the Lord is the everlasting Rock; he has brought low those who lived high up in the steep citadel; he brings it down, brings it down to the ground, flings it down in the dust: the feet of the lowly, the footsteps of the poor trample on it.
Psalm 117(118): 1, 8-9, 19-21, 27
R/ Blessed in the name of the Lord is he who comes.
Give thanks to the Lord for he is good, for his love has no end. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in men; it is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes. Blessed in
Open to me the gates of holiness: I will enter and give thanks. This is the Lord’s own gate where the just may enter. I will thank you for you have answered and you are my saviour.
O Lord, grant us salvation; O Lord, grant success. Blessed in the name of the Lord is he who comes. We bless you from the house of the Lord; the Lord God is our light.
Gospel Acclamation: Is 40: 9-10
Alleluia, alleluia! Shout with a loud voice, joyful messenger to Jerusalem. Here is the Lord God coming with power. Alleluia!
Gospel: Matthew 7:21, 24-27
Jesus said to his disciples: “It is not those who say to me, ‘Lord, Lord!’ who will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the person who does the will of my Father in heaven. Therefore, everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a sensible man who built his house on rock. Rain came down, floods rose, gales blew and hurled themselves against that house, and it did not fall: it was founded on rock. But everyone who listens to these words of mine and does not act on them will be like a stupid man who built his house on sand. Rain came down, floods rose, gales blew and struck that house, and it fell; and what a fall it had!”
Prayer over the Offerings
As we celebrate the divine mysteries, O Lord, we pray, may the Holy Spirit fill us with that light of faith by which he constantly enlightened Saint Ambrose for the spreading of your glory. Through Christ our Lord.
Communion Antiphon: Ps 1: 2, 3
He who ponders the law of the Lord day and night will yield fruit in due season.
Prayer after Communion
Lead us, who have been strengthened by the power of this Sacrament, O Lord, so to profit from the teaching of Saint Ambrose that, hastening fearlessly along your paths, we may be prepared for the delights of the eternal banquet. Through Christ our Lord.
Today, two images of Christ’s disciples are presented to us: the wise and the foolish. In common, they listen to the word of God but differ in putting it into practice. The wise one listens to the Word of God and puts it into practice while the foolish one stops at listening. In the face of adversity and tribulation, the wise remains confident and calm while the foolish panics, feels lost and crushed. These adjectives (wise and foolish) are not respectively praise or insult. They are images of recurrent situations in our Christian life, and the Gospel invites us to conform ourselves to wisdom; that is, putting into practice the Word of God. This fortifies the foundation of our faith, hope and charity. Without this experience, our faith is empty, our hope has no object and our charity is inactive.