Universalis
Saturday 1 November 2014    (other days)
All Saints
Solemnity

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
Immortal, invisible, God only wise,
In light inaccessible hid from our eyes,
Most blessed, most glorious, the Ancient of Days,
Almighty, victorious, thy great Name we praise.
Unresting, unhasting, and silent as light,
Nor wanting, nor wasting, thou rulest in might;
Thy justice like mountains high soaring above
Thy clouds, which are fountains of goodness and love.
To all life thou givest, to both great and small;
In all life thou livest, the true life of all;
We blossom and flourish, like leaves on the tree,
Then wither and perish; but naught changeth thee.
Great Father of glory, pure Father of light,
Thine angels adore thee, all veiling their sight;
All laud we would render: O help us to see
‘Tis only the splendour of light hideth thee.

Psalm 8
The greatness of God, the dignity of man
How great is your name, O Lord, because with glory and honour you have crowned your saints, and have given them power over the works of your hand.
How wonderful is your name over all the earth,
  O Lord, our Lord!
How exalted is your glory
  above the sky!
Out of the mouths of children and infants you have brought praise,
  to confound your enemies, to destroy your vengeful foes.
When I see the heavens, the work of your fingers,
  the moon and stars, which you set in their place –
what is man, that you should take thought for him?
  what is the son of man, that you should look after him?
You have made him but one step lower than the angels;
  you have crowned him with glory and honour;
  you have set him over the works of your hands.
You have put everything beneath his feet,
  cattle and sheep and the beasts of the field,
the birds in the air and the fish in the sea,
  whatever passes along the paths of the waters.
How wonderful is your name above all the earth,
  O Lord, our 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.
How great is your name, O Lord, because with glory and honour you have crowned your saints, and have given them power over the works of your hand.

Psalm 14 (15)
Who is worthy to face the Lord?
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Lord, who will live in your tent?
  Who will dwell on your holy mountain?
Whoever comes there without stain,
  acts rightly, speaks truth in his heart.
Whoever does not speak deceitfully,
  or do harm to his neighbour, or slander him.
Whoever despises the evil-doer,
  but reveres those who fear the Lord.
Whoever swears and keeps his word, come what may
 – lends his money without usury –
  takes no bribe to condemn the innocent.
Whoever lives like this
  will stand firm for ever.
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.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

Psalm 15 (16)
The Lord, my inheritance
You have shown your saints the path of life; you will give them the fullness of joy in your presence.
Preserve me, Lord,
  I put my hope in you.
I have said to the Lord
  “You are my Lord,
  in you alone is all my good.”
As for the holy and noble men of the land,
  in them is all my delight.
But for those who run to alien gods,
  their sorrows are many.
I will not share in their libations of blood.
  I will not speak their names.
You, Lord, are my inheritance and my cup.
  You control my destiny,
the lot marked out for me is of the best,
  my inheritance is all I could ask for.
I will bless the Lord who gave me understanding;
  even in the night my heart will teach me wisdom.
I will hold the Lord for ever in my sight:
  with him at my side I can never be shaken.
Thus it is that my heart rejoices,
  heart and soul together;
  while my body rests in calm hope.
You will not leave my soul in the underworld.
  You will not let your chosen one see decay.
You will show me the paths of life,
  the fullness of joy before your face,
  and delights at your right hand until the end of time.
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.
You have shown your saints the path of life; you will give them the fullness of joy in your presence.

Look at the Lord and be radiant:
be ashamed no longer.

First Reading
Apocalypse 5:1-14 ©
I saw that in the right hand of the One sitting on the throne there was a scroll that had writing on back and front and was sealed with seven seals. Then I saw a powerful angel who called with a loud voice, ‘Is there anyone worthy to open the scroll and break the seals of it?’ But there was no one, in heaven or on the earth or under the earth, who was able to open the scroll and read it. I wept bitterly because there was nobody fit to open the scroll and read it, but one of the elders said to me, ‘There is no need to cry: the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed, and he will open the scroll and the seven seals of it.’
  Then I saw, standing between the throne with its four animals and the circle of the elders, a Lamb that seemed to have been sacrificed; it had seven horns, and it had seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits God has sent out all over the world. The Lamb came forward to take the scroll from the right hand of the One sitting on the throne, and when he took it, the four animals prostrated themselves before him and with them the twenty-four elders; each one of them was holding a harp and had a golden bowl full of incense made of the prayers of the saints. They sang a new hymn:
‘You are worthy to take the scroll
and break the seals of it,
because you were sacrificed, and with your blood
you bought men for God
of every race, language, people and nation
and made them a line of kings and priests,
to serve our God and to rule the world.’
In my vision, I heard the sound of an immense number of angels gathered round the throne and the animals and the elders; there were ten thousand times ten thousand of them and thousands upon thousands, shouting, ‘The Lamb that was sacrificed is worthy to be given power, riches, wisdom, strength, honour, glory and blessing.’ Then I heard all the living things in creation – everything that lives in the air, and on the ground, and under the ground, and in the sea, crying, ‘To the One who is sitting on the throne and to the Lamb, be all praise, honour, glory and power, for ever and ever.’ And the four animals said, ‘Amen’; and the elders prostrated themselves to worship.
Responsory
Lord, God Almighty, the one who is, and ever was, and who is still to come, we give you thanks for assuming the sovereignty which belongs to you. The time has come to reward your servants and your saints.
All your creation shall give thanks to you, O Lord, and all your holy ones shall bless you. The time has come to reward your servants and your saints.

Second Reading
A sermon by Saint Bernard, abbot.
Let us make haste to our brethren who are awaiting us
Why should our praise and glorification, or even the celebration of this feast day mean anything to the saints? What do they care about earthly honours when their heavenly Father honours them by fulfilling the faithful promise of the Son? What does our commendation mean to them? The saints have no need of honour from us; neither does our devotion add the slightest thing to what is theirs. Clearly, if we venerate their memory, it serves us, not them. But I tell you, when I think of them, I feel myself inflamed by a tremendous yearning.
  Calling the saints to mind inspires, or rather arouses in us, above all else, a longing to enjoy their company, so desirable in itself. We long to share in the citizenship of heaven, to dwell with the spirits of the blessed, to join the assembly of patriarchs, the ranks of the prophets, the council of apostles, the great host of martyrs, the noble company of confessors and the choir of virgins. In short, we long to be united in happiness with all the saints. But our dispositions change. The Church of all the first followers of Christ awaits us, but we do nothing about it. The saints want us to be with them, and we are indifferent. The souls of the just await us, and we ignore them.
  Come, brothers, let us at length spur ourselves on. We must rise again with Christ, we must seek the world which is above and set our mind on the things of heaven. Let us long for those who are longing for us, hasten to those who are waiting for us, and ask those who look for our coming to intercede for us. We should not only want to be with the saints, we should also hope to possess their happiness. While we desire to be in their company, we must also earnestly seek to share in their glory. Do not imagine that there is anything harmful in such an ambition as this; there is no danger in setting our hearts on such glory.
  When we commemorate the saints we are inflamed with another yearning: that Christ our life may also appear to us as he appeared to them and that we may one day share in his glory. Until then we see him, not as he is, but as he became for our sake. He is our head, crowned, not with glory, but with the thorns of our sins. As members of that head, crowned with thorns, we should be ashamed to live in luxury; his purple robes are a mockery rather than an honour. When Christ comes again, his death shall no longer be proclaimed, and we shall know that we also have died, and that our life is hidden with him. The glorious head of the Church will appear and his glorified members will shine in splendour with him, when he forms this lowly body anew into such glory as belongs to himself, its head.
  Therefore, we should aim at attaining this glory with a wholehearted and prudent desire. That we may rightly hope and strive for such blessedness, we must above all seek the prayers of the saints. Thus, what is beyond our own powers to obtain will be granted through their intercession.
Responsory
Praise our God, all you his servants, you who fear him, small and great, for the reign of our Lord God, the Almighty, has begun.
Rejoice in the Lord, O you just ones! Praise is fitting for loyal hearts, for the reign of our Lord God, the Almighty, has begun.

CanticleTe Deum
God, we praise you; Lord, we proclaim you!
You, the Father, the eternal –
all the earth venerates you.
All the angels, all the heavens, every power –
The cherubim, the seraphim –
unceasingly, they cry:
“Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of Hosts:
heaven and earth are full of the majesty of your glory!”
The glorious choir of Apostles –
The noble ranks of prophets –
The shining army of martyrs –
all praise you.
Throughout the world your holy Church proclaims you.
– Father of immeasurable majesty,
– True Son, only-begotten, worthy of worship,
– Holy Spirit, our Advocate.
You, Christ:
– You are the king of glory.
– You are the Father’s eternal Son.
– You, to free mankind, did not disdain a Virgin’s womb.
– You defeated the sharp spear of Death, and opened the kingdom of heaven to those who believe in you.
– You sit at God’s right hand, in the glory of the Father.
– You will come, so we believe, as our Judge.
And so we ask of you: give help to your servants, whom you set free at the price of your precious blood.
Number them among your chosen ones in eternal glory.
The final part of the hymn may be omitted:
Bring your people to safety, Lord, and bless those who are your inheritance.
Rule them and lift them high for ever.
Day by day we bless you, Lord: we praise you for ever and for ever.
Of your goodness, Lord, keep us without sin for today.
Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy on us.
Let your pity, Lord, be upon us, as much as we trust in you.
In you, Lord, I trust: let me never be put to shame.

Let us pray.
Almighty, ever-living God,
  we are celebrating with joy
  the triumph of your grace in all the saints.
With so vast a multitude praying for us,
  may we receive from you
  the fullness of mercy we have always desired.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
  who lives and reigns with you and 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 downloads do contain the Grail translation of the psalms.

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