Universalis
Friday 5 November 2021    (other days)
Friday of week 31 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
In ancient times God spoke to us
Through prophets, and in varied ways,
But now he speaks through Christ his Son,
His radiance through eternal days.
To God the Father of the world,
His Son through whom he made all things,
And Holy Spirit, bond of love,
All glad creation glory sings.
Stanbrook Abbey Hymnal

Psalm 68 (69)
I am consumed with zeal for your house

I am wearied with all my crying as I await my God.
Save me, O God,
  for the waters have come up to my neck.
I am stuck in bottomless mud;
  I am adrift in deep waters
  and the flood is sweeping me away.
I am exhausted with crying out, my throat is parched,
  my eyes are failing as I look out for my God.
Those who hate me for no reason
  are more than the hairs of my head.
They are strong, my persecutors, my lying enemies:
  they make me give back things I never took.
God, you know my weakness:
  my crimes are not hidden from you.
Let my fate not put to shame those who trust in you,
  Lord, Lord of hosts.
Let them not be dismayed on my account,
  those who seek you, God of Israel.
For it is for your sake that I am taunted
  and covered in confusion:
I have become a stranger to my own brothers,
  a wanderer in the eyes of my mother’s children –
because zeal for your house is consuming me,
  and the taunts of those who hate you
  fall upon my head.
I have humbled my soul with fasting
  and they reproach me for it.
I have made sackcloth my clothing
  and they make me a byword.
The idlers at the gates speak against me;
  for drinkers of wine, I am the butt of their songs.
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.
I am wearied with all my crying as I await my God.

Psalm 68 (69)

For food they gave me poison, and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.
But I turn my prayer to you, Lord,
  at the acceptable time, my God.
In your great kindness, hear me,
  and rescue me with your faithful help.
Tear me from the mire, before I become stuck;
  tear me from those who hate me;
  tear me from the depths of the waters.
Do not let the waves overwhelm me;
  do not let the deep waters swallow me;
  do not let the well’s mouth engulf me.
Hear me, Lord, for you are kind and good.
  In your abundant mercy, look upon me.
Do not turn your face from your servant:
  I am suffering, so hurry to answer me.
Come to my soul and deliver it,
  rescue me from my enemies’ attacks.
You know how I am taunted and ashamed;
  how I am thrown into confusion.
You can see all those who are troubling me.
  Reproach has shattered my heart – I am sick.
I looked for sympathy, but none came;
  I looked for a consoler but did not find one.
They gave me bitterness to eat;
  when I was thirsty, they gave me vinegar to drink.
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.
For food they gave me poison, and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink.

Psalm 68 (69)

Seek the Lord, and he will give life to your soul.
I am weak and I suffer,
  but your help, O God, will sustain me.
I will praise the name of God in song
  and proclaim his greatness with praises.
This will please the Lord more than oxen,
  than cattle with their horns and hooves.
Let the humble see and rejoice.
  Seek the Lord, and your heart shall live,
for the Lord has heard the needy
  and has not despised his captive people.
Let heaven and earth praise him,
  the seas and all that swims in them.
For the Lord will make Zion safe
  and build up the cities of Judah:
  there they will live, the land will be theirs.
The seed of his servants will inherit the land,
  and those who love his name will dwell there.
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.
Seek the Lord, and he will give life to your soul.

℣. The Lord will teach us his ways.
℟. We will walk in his paths.

First Reading
2 Maccabees 12:32-45 ©

Sacrifice for the dead

After Pentecost, as it is called, they marched against Gorgias, the military commissioner for Idumaea. He came out at the head of three thousand infantry and four hundred cavalry; in the course of the ensuing battle a few Jews lost their lives.
  A man called Dositheus, one of the Tubians, who was on horseback and a powerful man, grasped Gorgias, taking him by the cloak, and was forcibly dragging him along, intending to take the accursed man alive, but one of the Thracian cavalry, hurling himself on Dositheus, slashed his shoulder, and Gorgias escaped to Marisa. Meanwhile since Esdrias and his men had been fighting for a long time and were exhausted, Judas called on the Lord to show them he was their ally and leader in battle.
  Then, chanting the battle cry and other hymns at the top of his voice in the language of his ancestors, he routed Gorgias’ troops.
  Judas then rallied his army and moved on to the town of Adullam, and since the seventh day of the week had arrived they purified themselves according to custom and kept the sabbath in that place. The next day they came to Judas (since the necessity was by now urgent) to have the bodies of the fallen taken up and laid to rest among their relatives in their ancestral tombs. But when they found on each of the dead men, under their tunics, amulets of the idols taken from Jamnia, which the Law prohibits to Jews, it became clear to everyone that this was why these men had lost their lives. All then blessed the ways of the Lord, the just judge who brings hidden things to light, and gave themselves to prayer, begging that the sin committed might be fully blotted out. Next, the valiant Judas urged the people to keep themselves free from all sin, having seen with their own eyes the effects of the sin of those who had fallen; after this he took a collection from them individually, amounting to nearly two thousand drachmae, and sent it to Jerusalem to have a sacrifice for sin offered, an altogether fine and noble action, in which he took full account of the resurrection. For if he had not expected the fallen to rise again it would have been superfluous and foolish to pray for the dead, whereas if he had in view the splendid recompense reserved for those who make a pious end, the thought was holy and devout. This was why he had this atonement sacrifice offered for the dead, so that they might be released from their sin.
Responsory2 M 12:44-45
℟. There are those who have fallen asleep in godliness:* they will then have a splendid reward laid up for them.
℣. It is a holy and pious thought to make atonement for the dead, that they may be delivered from their sins:* they will then have a splendid reward laid up for them.

Second Reading
From a sermon by Saint Gregory Nazianzen

It is a holy thought to pray for the dead

What is man, that you are mindful of him? What is this new mystery surrounding me? I am both small and great, both lowly and exalted, mortal and immortal, earthly and heavenly. I am to be buried with Christ and to rise again with him, to become a co-heir with him, a son of God, and indeed God himself.
  This is what the great mystery means for us; this is why God became man and became poor for our sake: it was to raise up our flesh, to recover the divine image, to re-create mankind, so that all of us might become one in Christ who perfectly became in us everything that he is himself. So we are no longer to be male and female, barbarian and Scythian, slave and free – distinctions deriving from the flesh – but are to bear within ourselves only the seal of God, by whom and for whom we were created. We are to be so formed and moulded by him that we are recognised as belonging to his one family.
  If only we could be what we hope to be, by the great kindness of our generous God! He asks so little and gives so much, in this life and in the next, to those who love him sincerely. In a spirit of hope and out of love for him, let us then bear and endure all things and give thanks for everything that befalls us, since even reason can often recognise these things as weapons to win salvation. And meanwhile let us commend to God our own souls and the souls of those who, being more ready for it, have reached the place of rest before us although they walked the same road as we do.
  Lord and Creator of all, and especially of your creature man, you are the God and Father and ruler of your children; you are the Lord of life and death, you are the guardian and benefactor of our souls. You fashion and transform all things in their due season through your creative Word, as you know to be best in your deep wisdom and providence. Receive now those who have gone ahead of us in our journey from this life.
  And receive us too at the proper time, when you have guided us in our bodily life as long as may be for our profit. Receive us prepared indeed by fear of you, but not troubled, not shrinking back on that day of death or uprooted by force like those who are lovers of the world and the flesh. Instead, may we set out eagerly for that everlasting and blessed life which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. To him be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
Responsory
℟. O Lord our God, receive into your presence the souls of the dead for whom you shed your blood.* Remember that we are dust, that the life of man is as transient as the grass or the flower of the field.
℣. Merciful and compassionate Lord, show us your loving kindness.* Remember that we are dust, that the life of man is as transient as the grass or the flower of the field.

Let us pray.
God of power and mercy,
  by whose grace your people give you praise and worthy service,
save us from faltering
  on our way to the joys you have promised.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

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

The psalms and canticles here are our own translation from the Latin. 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 and programs do contain the Grail translation of the psalms.

You can also view this page in Latin and English.

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