Universalis
Friday 17 November 2017    (other days)
Saint Elizabeth of Hungary, Religious 
 (Friday of week 32 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
God has spoken by his prophets,
Spoken his unchanging word,
Each from age to age proclaiming
God the One, the righteous Lord.
Mid the world’s despair and turmoil,
one firm anchor holdeth fast:
God is King, his throne eternal,
God the first and God the last.
God has spoken by Christ Jesus,
Christ, the everlasting Son,
Brightness of the Father’s glory,
With the Father ever one;
Spoken by the Word incarnate,
God of God, ere time began,
Light of Light, to earth descending,
Man, revealing God to man.

Psalm 54 (55)
Against a faithless friend
Do not reject my plea, O God, for wicked men assail me.
Open your ears, O God, to my prayer,
  and do not hide when I call on you:
  turn to me and answer me.
My thoughts are distracted and I am disturbed
  by the voice of my enemy and the oppression of the wicked.
They let loose their wickedness on me,
  they persecute me in their anger.
My heart is tied in a knot
  and the terrors of death lie upon me;
fear and trembling cover me;
  terror holds me tight.
I said, “Will no-one give me wings like a dove?
  I shall fly away and rest.
I shall flee far away
  and remain all alone.
I shall wait for him who will save me
  from the stormy wind and the tempest.”
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.
Do not reject my plea, O God, for wicked men assail me.

Psalm 54 (55)
The Lord will free us from the hand of our enemies and from those who wish us harm.
Scatter them, Lord, and separate their tongues,
  for I see violence and conflict in the city.
By day and by night they circle it
  high on its battlements.
Within it are oppression and trouble;
  scheming and fraud fill its squares.
For if my enemy had slandered me,
  I think I could have borne it.
And if the one who hated me had trampled me,
  perhaps I could have hidden.
But you – a man just like me,
  my companion and my friend!
We had happy times together,
  we walked together in the house of God.
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.
The Lord will free us from the hand of our enemies and from those who wish us harm.

Psalm 54 (55)
Entrust your cares to the Lord and he will support you.
Let death break in upon them!
  Let them go down alive to the underworld,
  for wickedness shares their home.
As for me, I will call upon God,
  and the Lord will rescue me.
Evening, morning, noon – I shall watch and groan,
  and he will hear my voice.
He will redeem my soul
  and give it peace from those who attack me –
  for very many are my enemies.
God will hear and will bring them low,
  God, the eternal.
They will never reform:
  they do not fear God.
That man – he stretched out his hand against his allies:
  he corrupted his own covenant.
His face was smoother than butter,
  but his heart was at war;
his words were softer than oil,
  but they were sharp as drawn swords.
Throw all your cares on the Lord
  and he will give you sustenance.
  He will not let the just be buffeted for ever.
No – but you, Lord, will lead the wicked
  to the gaping mouth of destruction.
The men of blood and guile
  will not live half their days.
But I, Lord, will put my trust in you.
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.
Entrust your cares to the Lord and he will support you.

My son, attend to my wisdom,
and turn your ears to my words of prudence.

First ReadingDaniel 10:1-21 ©
The vision of the man and the apparition of the angel
In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a revelation was made to Daniel known as Belteshazzar, a true revelation of a great conflict. He grasped the meaning of the revelation; what it meant was disclosed to him in a vision.
  At that time, I, Daniel, was doing a three-week penance; I ate no rich food, touched no meat or wine, and did not anoint myself, until these three weeks were over. On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I stood on the bank of that great river, the Tigris, I raised my eyes to look about me, and this is what I saw:
A man dressed in linen, with a girdle of pure gold round his waist;
his body was like beryl,
his face shone like lightning,
his eyes were like fiery torches,
his arms and his legs had the gleam of burnished bronze,
the sound of his voice was like the noise of a crowd.
I, Daniel, alone saw the apparition; the men who were with me did not see the apparition, but so great a trembling overtook them that they fled to hide. I was left alone, gazing on this great apparition; I was powerless, my appearance altered out of all recognition, what strength I had deserted me.
  I heard him speak, and at the sound of his voice I fell unconscious to the ground. I felt a hand touching me, setting my knees and my hands trembling. He said, ‘Daniel, you are a man specially chosen; listen carefully to the words that I am going to say; stand up; I have been sent to you and here I am.’ He said this, and I stood up trembling. He said then, ‘Daniel, do not be afraid: from that first day when you resolved to humble yourself before God, the better to understand, your words have been heard; and your words are the reason why I have come. The prince of the kingdom of Persia has been resisting me for twenty-one days, but Michael, one of the leading princes, came to my assistance. I have left him confronting the kings of Persia and have come to tell you what will happen to your people in the days to come. For here is a new vision about those days.’
  When he had said these things to me I prostrated myself on the ground, without saying a word; then someone looking like a son of man came and touched my lips. I opened my mouth to speak, and I said to the person standing in front of me, ‘My lord, anguish overcomes me at this vision, and what strength I had deserts me. How can my lord’s servant speak to my lord now that I have no strength left and my breath fails me?’ Once again the person like a man touched me; he gave me strength. ‘Do not be afraid,’ he said ‘you are a man specially chosen; peace be with you; play the man, be strong!’ And as he spoke to me I felt strong again and said, ‘Let my lord speak, you have given me strength.’
  He said then, ‘Do you know why I have come to you? It is to tell you what is written in the Book of Truth. I must go back to fight against the prince of Persia: when I have done with him, the prince of Javan will come next. And now I will tell you the truth about these things. In all this there is no one to lend me support except Michael your prince, on whom I rely to give me support and reinforce me.’
ResponsoryDn 10:12,19,21
℟. From that first day when you resolved to humble yourself before God, the better to understand, your words have been heard:* this is why I have come.
℣. Do not be afraid, Daniel, I have come to tell you what is written in the Book of Truth:* this is why I have come.

Second Reading
From a letter of Conrad of Marburg, Saint Elizabeth's spiritual director
Elizabeth recognised and loved Christ in the poor
From this time onward Elizabeth’s goodness greatly increased. She was a lifelong friend of the poor and gave herself entirely to relieving the hungry. She ordered that one of her castles should be converted into a hospital in which she gathered many of the weak and feeble. She generously gave alms to all who were in need, not only in that place but in all the territories of her husband’s empire. She spent all her own revenue from her husband’s four principalities, and finally she sold her luxurious’ possessions and rich clothes for the sake of the poor.
  Twice a day, in the morning and in the evening, Elizabeth went to visit the sick. She personally cared for those who were particularly repulsive; to some she gave food, to others clothing; some she carried on her own shoulders, and performed many other kindly services. Her husband, of happy memory, gladly approved of these charitable works. Finally, when her husband died, she sought the highest perfection; filled with tears, she implored me to let her beg for alms from door to door.
  On Good Friday of that year, when the altars had been stripped, she laid her hands on the altar in a chapel in her own town, where she had established the Friars Minor, and before witnesses she voluntarily renounced all worldly display and everything that our Saviour in the gospel advises us to abandon. Even then she saw that she could still be distracted by the cares and worldly glory which had surrounded her while her husband was alive. Against my will she followed me to Marburg. Here in the town she built a hospice where she gathered together the weak and the feeble. There she attended the most wretched and contemptible at her own table.
  Apart from those active good works, I declare before God that I have seldom seen a more contemplative woman. When she was coming from private prayer, some religious men and women often saw her face shining marvellously and light coming from her eyes like the rays of the sun.
  Before her death I heard her confession. When I asked what should be done about her goods and possessions, she replied that anything which seemed to be hers belonged to the poor. She asked me to distribute everything except one worn out dress in which she wished to be buried. When all this had been decided, she received the body of our Lord. Afterward, until vespers, she spoke often of the holiest things she had heard in sermons. Then, she devoutly commended to God all who were sitting near her, and as if falling into a gentle sleep, she died.
Responsory
℟. You have acted bravely and kept your courage high. Your love of chastity shall not go unrewarded,* and your name shall be blessed for ever.
℣. God has accepted your prayers and works of charity, and has remembered you,* and your name shall be blessed for ever.

Let us pray.
Lord God, you taught Saint Elizabeth of Hungary
  to see and reverence Christ in the poor.
May her prayers help us
  to give constant love and service
  to the afflicted and the needy.
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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