Universalis
Wednesday 17 October 2018    (other days)
Saint Ignatius of Antioch, Bishop, Martyr 
 (Wednesday of week 28 in Ordinary Time)

Office of Readings

If this is the first Hour that you are reciting today, you should precede it with the Invitatory Psalm.


INTRODUCTION
O God, come to our aid.
  O Lord, make haste to help us.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son
  and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning,
  is now, and ever shall be,
  world without end.
Amen. Alleluia.

Hymn
The martyrs living now with Christ
In suffering were tried,
Their anguish overcome by love
When on his cross they died.
Across the centuries they come,
In constancy unmoved,
Their loving hearts make no complaint,
In silence they are proved.
No man has ever measured love,
Or weighed it in his hand,
But God who knows the inmost heart
Gives them the promised land.
Praise Father, Son and Spirit blest,
Who guides us through the night
In ways that reach beyond the stars
To everlasting light.
Francis E. Mostyn (1860-1939)

Psalm 102 (103)
Praise of the compassionate Lord
My soul, give thanks to the Lord, and never forget all his blessings.
My soul, bless the Lord!
  All that is in me, bless his holy name.
My soul, bless the Lord!
  Never forget all he has done for you.
The Lord, who forgives your wrongdoing,
  who heals all your weaknesses.
The Lord, who redeems your life from destruction,
  who crowns you with kindness and compassion.
The Lord, who fills your age with good things,
  who renews your youth like an eagle’s.
The Lord, who gives fair judgements,
  who gives judgement in favour of the oppressed.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son
  and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning,
  is now, and ever shall be,
  world without end.
Amen.
My soul, give thanks to the Lord, and never forget all his blessings.

Psalm 102 (103)
As a father has compassion on his sons, the Lord has pity on those who fear him.
The Lord is compassion and kindness,
  full of patience, full of mercy.
He will not fight against you for ever:
  he will not always be angry.
He does not treat us as our sins deserve;
  he does not pay us back for our wrongdoing.
As high as the sky above the earth,
  so great is his kindness to those who fear him.
As far as east is from west,
  so far he has put our wrongdoing from us.
As a father cares for his children,
  so the Lord cares for those who fear him.
For he knows how we are made,
  he remembers we are nothing but dust.
Man – his life is like grass,
  he blossoms and withers like flowers of the field.
The wind blows and carries him away:
  no trace of him remains.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son
  and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning,
  is now, and ever shall be,
  world without end.
Amen.
As a father has compassion on his sons, the Lord has pity on those who fear him.

Psalm 102 (103)
Give thanks to the Lord, all his works.
The Lord has been kind from the beginning;
  to those who fear him his kindness lasts for ever.
His justice is for their children’s children,
  for those who keep his covenant,
  for those who remember his commandments
  and try to perform them.
The Lord’s throne is high in the heavens
  and his rule shall extend over all.
Bless the Lord, all his angels,
  strong in your strength, doers of his command,
  bless him as you hear his words.
Bless the Lord, all his powers,
  his servants who do his will.
Bless the Lord, all he has created,
  in every place that he rules.
My soul, bless the Lord!
Glory be to the Father and to the Son
  and to the Holy Spirit,
as it was in the beginning,
  is now, and ever shall be,
  world without end.
Amen.
Give thanks to the Lord, all his works.

℣. Make me grasp the way of your precepts, Lord.
℟. I will meditate on your wonders.

First Reading
Zechariah 3:1-4:14 ©
Promises to Prince Zerubbabel and High Priest Joshua
He showed me Joshua the high priest, standing before the angel of the Lord, with Satan standing on his right to accuse him. The angel of the Lord said to Satan, ‘May the Lord rebuke you, Satan, may the Lord rebuke you, he who has made Jerusalem his very own. Is not this man a brand snatched from the fire?’ Now Joshua was dressed in dirty clothes as he stood before the angel of the Lord. The angel said these words to those who stood before him, ‘Take off his dirty clothes and clothe him in splendid robes of state, and put a clean turban on his head.’ They clothed him in splendid robes of state and put a clean turban on his head. The angel of the Lord was standing there and said to him, ‘Look, I have taken away your iniquity from you.’ The angel of the Lord then proclaimed to Joshua: ‘The Lord of Hosts says this, “If you walk in my ways and keep my ordinances, you shall govern my house, you shall watch over my courts, and I will give you free access among those who stand here. For this is the stone which I am placing before Joshua; on this single stone there are seven eyes; and I myself intend to cut the inscription on it – it is the Lord of Hosts who speaks.
  ‘“Now listen, High Priest Joshua, you and the friends who sit before you – for you are men of good omen. I now mean to raise my servant Branch, and I intend to put aside the iniquity of this land in a single day. On that day – it is the Lord of Hosts who speaks – you will entertain each other under your vine and fig tree.”’
  The angel who was talking to me came back and roused me as a man is roused from his sleep. And he asked me, ‘What can you see?’ I answered, ‘As I look, this is what I see: there is a lamp-stand entirely of gold with a bowl at the top of it; seven lamps are on the lamp-stand, and seven lips for the lamps on it. By it are two olive trees, one to the right of it and one to the left.’ Speaking again, I said to the angel who was talking to me, ‘What do those things mean, my lord?’ The angel who was talking to me replied, ‘Do you not know what these things mean?’ I said, ‘No, my lord.’ He then gave me this answer, ‘These seven are the eyes of the Lord; they cover the whole world.’ In reply to this I asked him, ‘What is the meaning of these two olive trees, to the right and to the left of the lamp-stand?’ (Speaking again, I asked him, ‘What is the meaning of the two olive branches pouring the oil through the two golden pipes?’) He replied, ‘Do you not know what these things mean?’ I said, ‘No, my lord.’ He said, ‘These are the two anointed ones who stand before the Lord of the whole world.
  ‘This is the word of the Lord with regard to Zerubbabel, “Not by might and not by power, but by my spirit, says the Lord of Hosts.
  “What are you, you great mountain? Before Zerubbabel, be a plain! He will pull out the keystone to shouts of: Blessings on it, blessings on it!”’
  The word of the Lord was addressed to me as follows, ‘The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this Temple; his hands will finish it. (And you will learn that the Lord of Hosts has sent me to you.) A day for little things, no doubt, but who would dare despise it? People will rejoice when they see the chosen stone in the hands of Zerubbabel.’
ResponsoryRv 11:3-4
℟. These are the two olive trees and the two lamps* that stand in the presence of the Lord of the earth.
℣. The Lord will appoint as prophets his two witnesses* that stand in the presence of the Lord of the earth.

Second Reading
From St Ignatius of Antioch's letter to the Romans
I am God's wheat and shall be ground by the teeth of wild animals
I am writing to all the churches to let it be known that I will gladly die for God if only you do not stand in my way. I plead with you: show me no untimely kindness. Let me be food for the wild beasts, for they are my way to God. I am God’s wheat and shall be ground by their teeth so that I may become Christ’s pure bread. Pray to Christ for me that the animals will be the means of making me a sacrificial victim for God.
  No earthly pleasures, no kingdoms of this world can benefit me in any way. I prefer death in Christ Jesus to power over the farthest limits of the earth. He who died in place of us is the one object of my quest. He who rose for our sakes is my one desire.
  The time for my birth is close at hand. Forgive me, my brothers. Do not stand in the way of my birth to real life; do not wish me stillborn. My desire is to belong to God. Do not, then, hand me back to the world. Do not try to tempt me with material things. Let me attain pure light. Only on my arrival there can I be fully a human being. Give me the privilege of imitating the passion of my God. If you have him in your heart, you will understand what I wish. You will sympathise with me because you will know what urges me on.
  The prince of this world is determined to lay hold of me and to undermine my will which is intent on God. Let none of you here help him; instead show yourselves on my side, which is also God’s side. Do not talk about Jesus Christ as long as you love this world. Do not harbour envious thoughts. And supposing I should see you, if then I should beg you to intervene on my behalf, do not believe what I say. Believe instead what I am now writing to you. For though I am alive as I write to you, still my real desire is to die. My love of this life has been crucified, and there is no yearning in me for any earthly thing. Rather within me is the living water which says deep inside me: “Come to the Father.” I no longer take pleasure in perishable food or in the delights of this world. I want only God’s bread, which is the flesh of Jesus Christ, formed of the seed of David, and for drink I crave his blood, which is love that cannot perish.
  I am no longer willing to live a merely human life, and you can bring about my wish if you will. Please, then, do me this favour, so that you in turn may meet with equal kindness. Put briefly, this is my request: believe what I am saying to you. Jesus Christ himself will make it clear to you that I am saying the truth. Only truth can come from that mouth by which the Father has truly spoken. Pray for me that I may obtain my desire. I have not written to you as a mere man would, but as one who knows the mind of God. If I am condemned to suffer, I will take it that you wish me well. If my case is postponed, I can only think that you wish me harm.
Responsory
℟. Nothing will be hidden from you, if you are perfect in your faith and love towards Jesus Christ, for these are the beginning and end of life:* faith is the beginning and love is the end.
℣. Arm yourselves with gentleness and renew your faith, which is the flesh of the Lord, and your love, which is the blood of Jesus Christ.* Faith is the beginning and love is the end.

Let us pray.
Almighty, ever-living God,
  the sufferings of the martyrs adorn the Church,
  which is the Body of Christ.
As we celebrate the martyrdom of Saint Ignatius of Antioch,
  grant that it may be for us a constant source of strength,
  as it was for him the entry into glory.
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.
Amen.

Let us praise the Lord.
– Thanks be to God.

The psalms and canticles here are our own translation. The Grail translation of the psalms, which is used liturgically in most of the English-speaking world, cannot be displayed on the Web for copyright reasons. The Universalis apps, programs and downloads do contain the Grail translation of the psalms.

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