N021- 3rd Sunday of Lent

3rd Sunday in Lent

Collect: We beseech thee, Almighty God, look upon the hearty desires of thy humble servants, and stretch forth the right hand of thy majesty, to be our defense against all our enemies. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son, our Lord, etc.

The Introit. Ps. 25:14-15. (v 23-26) (Oculi mei) Mine eyes are ever looking unto the Lord: for he shall pluck my feet out of the net: turn thee unto me and have mercy upon me, for I am desolate and in misery. Ps. 25:1. Unto thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul: my God, in thee have I trusted, let me not be confounded.

The Epistle: Ephesians 5:1-9. (Christians are to “walk in love,” which necessarily means that sin must be avoided. And not just sin as a concept, but sin as a reality of wrong choices made. Specific examples of such are named, much to our discomfort and shame. However, the grace of God is greater than any sin and thereby Christians can “walk as children of light.”)

Gradual Ps. 9:19-20. Up, Lord, and let not man have the upper hand: let the heathen be judged in thy sight. While mine enemies are driven back, they shall fall and perish at thy presence.

Tract. Ps.123:1-3.

  1. Unto thee lift I up mine eyes, O thou that dwellest in the heavens..
  2. Behold, even as the eyes of servants look unto the hand of their masters, and as the eyes of a maiden unto the hand of her mistress: even so our eyes wait upon the Lord our God, until he have me upon us.
  3. Have mercy upon us, O Lord, have mercy upon us.

The Gospel. St. Luke 11:14-28 (Christ casts out devils by His power as Son of God and thereby shows another sign that the Kingdom of God has come. We each have a clear choice, either to be with Him or not. He will without doubt strengthen and keep those who choose to be with Him.)

Offertory. Ps. 19:8, 10. The statutes of the Lord are right and rejoice the heart, sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb: moreover thy servant keepeth them.             

Communion. Ps. 84:3-4. The sparrow hath found her an house, and the swallow a nest where she may lay her young: even thy altars, O Lord of hosts, my King and my God. Blessed are they that dwell in thy house: they will be always praising thee.

At the Divine Office

The Old Testament lessons  for the week to come are set out below:

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
Matins Gen. 37:3-28, 36 Gen. 40 Gen. 41:1a,8,14-24 Gen. 41:25-40 Gen. 42:1-26,29a,35-38 Gen. 43:1-5,11-16,26-34
Vespers Jer. 7:1-15 Jer. 7:21-29 Jer. 8:4-13 Jer. 9:2-16 Jer. 9:17-24 Jer. 10:1-13

Benedictus and Magnificat Antiphons

At 1st  Vespers: But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet.

At Matins: When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, all his goods are in peace.

At 2nd Vespers: A certain woman of the company lifted up her voice and cried, Blessed is the womb that bare thee, and the paps which thou hast sucked. But Jesus answered, Yea, rather, blessed are thy that hear the word of God, and keep it.

Click here to download a PDF file of this minor proper.

Click here to download a PDF file of the transcript of this podcast .

T005 – Introduction to the Psalms, Part II

Some Thoughts on the Literal and Figurative Meanings of Scripture and the Structure and Imagery in the Psalms .

  1. In her Introduction to Bede: On the Temple, Dr. J O’Reilly provides a succinct explanation of how this works in relationship to the Temple of God
  2. Bede himself provides us with this insight beautifully in his homilies On the Dedication of the Church, Hom II. 24 & 25.
  3. The Book as we now have it in the Bible is divided into 5 parts, 1-41, 42-72, 73-89, 90-106, 107-150. This does not appear to be particularly significant as to content. A more useful grouping of the Psalms is in accord with the general history of Israel around the Covenant, particularly with reference to David. (see here, Schaefer, pp 352-355, particularly 1st full para on p 353)
    • Introduction: The righteous one, Ps: 1-2
    • Book I: David’s conflict with Saul, Ps: 3-41
    • Book II: David’s kingship, Ps: 42-72
    • Book III: The Assyrian crisis, Ps: 73-89
    • Book IV: The destruction of the Temple and the Exile, Ps: 90-106
    • Book V: Praise & reflection on the Return and the new era, Ps 107-145
    • CONCLUSION: Climatic praise to God, Ps. 146-150.
  4. It is important to begin any study of the Psalms with a discussion of the literary structure of the Psalms. It is remarkable – undoubtedly a sign of God’s special care – that the vast majority of the imagery and meter is not lost with translation from the original (Hebrew or Greek) to another language. We follow here Dom Konrad Schaefer, OSB.
    • Imagery – reality, both actual and distorted, is depicted with a broad panorama of images. (pp xii-xiv)
    • Repetition and Parallelism – the basic structure of Hebrew poetry is parallelism, or the interrelation of two half-lines of poetry. (pp xiv – xix)
    • Context and Sequence – The Psalter begins with a “wisdom” psalm which blesses those who delight in the Law of the Lord which is followed by Psalm 2 which, though different in structure and meter than Psalm 1, complements it and forms part of a single introduction.
  5. Practical Example, Psalms 1 & 2 and the commentaries thereon in St. Augustine and Schaefer. The “Law” as we see the psalmist delighting in meant something very unique and special to him and to all who followed. For the good Jew of the Old Testament, the “Law” meant far more than a set of precepts given by God (“Thou shalt not…, etc.). It meant a complete human life in which every action was done in full accord with the manner in which God intended for us to act. So it would be better to think of the Law as not a set of precepts but rather of a picture – a moving picture – of human life correct lived in accordance with the Will of God, Who created mankind. We know, of course, that such a life is beyond our own strength and ability, although it is not beyond our desire! However, as member of the Body of Christ, Christ gives us the power to live as we should.

R011 – The Assyrian Crisis: The Background for Psalms 73 to 89


           In 721 BC, the Assyrian army captured the Israelite capital at Samaria and carried away the citizens of the northern kingdom into captivity. The virtual destruction of Israel left the southern kingdom, Judah, to fend for itself among warring Near Eastern kingdoms. At the time of Samaria’s fall, there existed two kings in Judah — Ahaz and his son Hezekiah — who ruled as co-regents. After the fall of the Northern Kingdom, the kings of Judah tried to extend their influence and protection to those inhabitants who had not been exiled. They also sought to extend their authority northward into areas previously controlled by the Kingdom of Israel.The latter part of the reign of Ahaz, and most of that of Hezekiah were periods of stability during which Judah was able to consolidate both politically and economically. Although Judah was a vassal of Assyria during this time and paid an annual tribute to the powerful empire, it was the most important state between Assyria and Egypt.[1]

             In 715 BC, following the death of Ahaz, Hezekiah became the sole regent of Judah and initiated widespread religious changes, including the breaking of religious idols. He re-captured Philistine-occupied lands in the Negev desert, formed alliances with Ashkelon and Egypt, and made a stand against Assyria by refusing to pay tribute.[2] In response, Sennacherib attacked Judah, laying siege to Jerusalem.

Click here to go to the complete article on Wikipedia


R010 – The Literary Character of Hebrew Poetry

The Literary Character of Hebrew Poetry

  1. Rhythm of Thought The genius of Hebrew poetry is in the realm of “thought rhymeand the key to thought rhyme is in the technique of parallelism (the correspondence of one thought with another)
    1. Synonymous parallelism exactly balances the thoughts or meanings in two lines of poetry by saying the same thing twice in nearly the same way (Ps. 3:1; 7:16; 2:4)
    2. Synthetic and Climatic parallelism further takes up and develops a through begun in the first line by adding a little more to enrich one’s thinking (Ps. 95:3; 1:1). Occasionally they expansion is expressed in a tiered structure in which each line repeats the first with the exception of the last term/phrase where a new one is added (Ps. 29:1)
    3. Emblematic parallelism uses images to convey the poetic meaning. While one line conveys the main point in a direct fashion, the second line illuminates it by an image. There is a movement from point to picture (Ps. 23:1,2,4; 103:13; 113:5,6; 57:1)
    4. Antithetical parallelism  balances the thoughts or ideas within the line pairs by stating truth in the first line in an opposing or negative way by introducing a contrast (Ps. 1:6; 57:6)
    5. Chiastic orInverted parallelism contraposes or alternates the words or phrases in consecutive lines (Ps. 51:3; Isa. 11:13)
  2. Rhythm of Sound (in Hebrew)
    1. Acrostic Poems are written so that the initial letters of consecutive lines form an alphabet, word, or phrase (Ps. 9; 10; 25; 34; 37; 11; 112; 119; 145; Prov. 31:10-31; Lam. 1; 2; 3; 4;Nahum 1:2-20). This was a mnemonic tool (memory device) conveying ideas of order, progression, and completeness.
    2. Alliteration is the consonance of sounds at the beginning of words or syllables (Ps. 122:6)
    3. Assonance is correspondence of vowels sounds, often at the end of words in order to emphasize an idea, theme, or tone (Ps. 119:29)
    4. Paronomasia is a word play through the repetition of words of similar sound, but not necessarily meaning in order to heighten the impact of the message (Gen. 32:22-24)
    5. Onomatopoeia is the use of words that sound like what they describe (Ruth 1:19)
    6. Ellipsis is the omission of a word or words that would complete a given parallel construction (Ps. 115:4-7)
    7. Inclusio is the repetition of words or phrases by which the poet returns to the point from which he began (Ps. 118:1,29)
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N020 – 2nd Sunday of Lent

2nd Sunday in Lent

Collect: Almighty God, who seest that we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves; Keep us both outwardly in our bodies, and inwardly in our souls; that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son, our Lord Who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.

The Introit. Ps. 25:5-6. (v 23-26) (Reminiscere) Call to remembrance thy tender mercies, O Lord, and thy loving kindnesses which have been ever of old: O let not our enemies triumph over us: deliver us, O God of Israel out of all our troubles. Ps. 25:1. Unto thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul: my God, in thee have I trusted, let me not be confounded.

The Epistle: I Thessalonians 4:1-7.(St. Paul exhorts us in accordance with the Lord Jesus that we seek to please God as He did. We are to abstain and flee from fornication and every other sin and seek to abide in holiness. God has called us to cleanness, not uncleanness.)

Gradual Ps. 25:16-17. The sorrows of my heart are enlarged: O bring thou me out of my troubles, O Lord. Look upon my adversity and misery: and forgive me all my sin.

Tract. Ps.106:1-4.

  1. O give thanks unto the Lord, for he is gracious * and his mercy endureth for ever.
  2. Who can express the noble acts of the Lord * or show forth all his praise?
  3. Blessed are they that always keep judgement * and do righteousness.
  4. Remember us, O Lord, according to the favour that thou barest unto thy people * O visit us with thy salvation.

The Gospel. St. Matthew 15:21-28 (Jesus has mercy on a Canaanite woman who seeks help for her daughter. She worshiped Him, although she was a non-Jew. Jesus commends her for her faith and heals her daughter.)

Offertory. Ps. 119:47-48. My delight shall be in thy commandments, which I have loved exceedingly: my hands also will I lift up unto thy commandments which I have loved.

Communion. Ps. 5:1-2. Consider my meditation: O hearken thou unto the voice of my calling, my King and my God: for unto thee will I make my prayer, O Lord.

 At the Divine Office

The Old Testament lessons in the Daily Office for the week to come are set out below:

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
Matins Gen. 27:1-29 Gen. 27:30-40 Gen. 27:46 – 28:4,10-22 Gen. 29:1-13, 18-20 Gen. 32:22-31 Gen. 35:1-7, 16-20
Vespers Jer. 4:23 Jer. 5:1-9 Jer. 5:10-19 Jer. 5:20 Jer. 6:1-8 Jer. 6:9-21
Benedictus and Magnificat Antiphons

At 1st  Vespers: Tell the vision which ye have seen to no man, until the Son of Man be risen again from the dead.

At Matins: Jesus went thence, and departed into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon: and behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts, and cried, saying: Have mercy on me, thou Son of David.

At 2nd Vespers: Jesus said unto the woman of Canaan, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs. Truth, Lord; yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their master’s table. Then Jesus answered, O woman, great is thy faith; be it unto thee even as thou wilt.

Click here to download a PDF copy of this Minor Proper Click here for a PDF download of the transcript of this talk.

T004 – Introduction to the Psalms, Part I

Introduction to the Psalms – Week I

 Some considerations about the theology of Divine Revelation

and the Psalms in general.

How God Reveals Himself:

  • The Bible as we have it now is a compendium
    1. A number of “books” with a variety of human authors and a variety of styles.
    2. Bible is the record of the lives of the people who are in a special relationship with God.
    3. The Bible is the record of what the Jews thought was important in their history and what God considered to be important in the same history.
  • The Bible is addressed to all of us, extended both through space and through time.
    1. Something “obscure” or “irrelevant” now may be just what the Church of 2316 A.D. may need.
    2. Likewise, something which was critical in the past, may now be outdated or irrelevant – However, we must be careful here as it is all too easy to write off some uncomfortable truth as “irrelevant.”
  • Through words, deeds (the actions of men), and events (actions of nature or men considered collectively)
  • Events form the structure around which the whole is placed. E.g.: creation, call of Abraham, Egyptian captivity, Exodus, etc.
  • The primary rule to be followed always is set out in Scripture itself:
    • Romans 15:4: For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.
    • 2 Timothy 3:16: All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.
    • Luke 24:13-35 (The disciples on the road to Emmaus after the Resurrection encounter Christ) And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.
    • It is appropriate to say that God wills:
      1. The events described in Scripture
      2. The development of human civilization
      3. Development of human languages
      4. The development of writing and literature and the use of writing as a means of communicating from one generation to the next.
      5. The work of each human author of Scripture. While it is not true that God “dictated” all of Scripture (He certainly seems to have done some!), but it is true that He intended the results, and so preserved human authors from errors which would obscure or detract from His purpose. This is a mystery which we can not comprehend!
  • All of this was understood by the Church and as it developed, the various teachers and Fathers developed what are now generally referred to as the four senses of Holy Scripture. These are:
    • Historical (or literal) – the meaning of the words themselves
    • Allegorical – the meaning that is hidden in the text
    • Tropological – the moral lessons which can be drawn from the text
    • Anagogical – pointing toward the end times, the Coming of Christ.
  • Or, As Cassian says, one and the same Jerusalem can be taken in four senses:
    1. historically as the city of the Jews;
    2. allegorically as Church of Christ,
    3. anagogically as the heavenly city of God “which is the mother of us all,”
    4. tropologically, as the soul of man, which is frequently subject to praise or blame from the Lord under this title.

Click to download The Four Levels of Scripture

Detailed Biblical History Timeline


R007 – Lessons from the Apocrypha

Here are the three lessons from the Apocrypha which occur in the Mass during Lent. I’ve included them here because they are sometimes not easy to find – depending on the version of the Bible you are using.

Bel and the Dragon, verses 1-42 from The Apocrypha of the King James Version

1  And king Astyages was gathered to his fathers, and Cyrus of Persia received his kingdom.

2  And Daniel conversed with the king, and was honoured above all his friends.

3  Now the Babylonians had an idol, called Bel, and there were spent upon him every day twelve great measures of fine flour, and forty sheep, and six vessels of wine.

4  And the king worshipped it and went daily to adore it: but Daniel worshipped his own God. And the king said unto him, Why dost not thou worship Bel?

5  Who answered and said, Because I may not worship idols made with hands, but the living God, who hath created the heaven and the earth, and hath sovereignty over all flesh.

6  Then said the king unto him, Thinkest thou not that Bel is a living God? seest thou not how much he eateth and drinketh every day?

7  Then Daniel smiled, and said, O king, be not deceived: for this is but clay within, and brass without, and did never eat or drink any thing.

8  So the king was wroth, and called for his priests, and said unto them, If ye tell me not who this is that devoureth these expences, ye shall die.

9  But if ye can certify me that Bel devoureth them, then Daniel shall die: for he hath spoken blasphemy against Bel. And Daniel said unto the king, Let it be according to thy word.

10 Now the priests of Bel were threescore and ten, beside their wives and children. And the king went with Daniel into the temple of Bel.

11 So Bel’s priests said, Lo, we go out: but thou, O king, set on the meat, and make ready the wine, and shut the door fast and seal it with thine own signet;

12 And tomorrow when thou comest in, if thou findest not that Bel hath eaten up all, we will suffer death: or else Daniel, that speaketh falsely against us.

13 And they little regarded it: for under the table they had made a privy entrance, whereby they entered in continually, and consumed those things.

14 So when they were gone forth, the king set meats before Bel. Now Daniel had commanded his servants to bring ashes, and those they strewed throughout all the temple in the presence of the king alone: then went they out, and shut the door, and sealed it with the king’s signet, and so departed.

15 Now in the night came the priests with their wives and children, as they were wont to do, and did eat and drink up all.

16 In the morning betimes the king arose, and Daniel with him.

17 And the king said, Daniel, are the seals whole? And he said, Yea, O king, they be whole.

18 And as soon as he had opened the door, the king looked upon the table, and cried with a loud voice, Great art thou, O Bel, and with thee is no deceit at all.

19 Then laughed Daniel, and held the king that he should not go in, and said, Behold now the pavement, and mark well whose footsteps are these.

20 And the king said, I see the footsteps of men, women, and children. And then the king was angry,

21 And took the priests with their wives and children, who shewed him the privy doors, where they came in, and consumed such things as were upon the table.

22 Therefore the king slew them, and delivered Bel into Daniel’s power, who destroyed him and his temple.

23 And in that same place there was a great dragon, which they of Babylon worshipped.

24 And the king said unto Daniel, Wilt thou also say that this is of brass? lo, he liveth, he eateth and drinketh; thou canst not say that he is no living god: therefore worship him.

25 Then said Daniel unto the king, I will worship the Lord my God: for he is the living God.

26 But give me leave, O king, and I shall slay this dragon without sword or staff. The king said, I give thee leave.

27 Then Daniel took pitch, and fat, and hair, and did seethe them together, and made lumps thereof: this he put in the dragon’s mouth, and so the dragon burst in sunder: and Daniel said, Lo, these are the gods ye worship.

28 When they of Babylon heard that, they took great indignation, and conspired against the king, saying, The king is become a Jew, and he hath destroyed Bel, he hath slain the dragon, and put the priests to death.

29 So they came to the king, and said, Deliver us Daniel, or else we will destroy thee and thine house.

30 Now when the king saw that they pressed him sore, being constrained, he delivered Daniel unto them:

31 Who cast him into the lions’ den: where he was six days.

32 And in the den there were seven lions, and they had given them every day two carcases, and two sheep: which then were not given to them, to the intent they might devour Daniel.

33 Now there was in Jewry a prophet, called Habbacuc, who had made pottage, and had broken bread in a bowl, and was going into the field, for to bring it to the reapers.

34 But the angel of the Lord said unto Habbacuc, Go, carry the dinner that thou hast into Babylon unto Daniel, who is in the lions’ den.

35 And Habbacuc said, Lord, I never saw Babylon; neither do I know where the den is.

36 Then the angel of the Lord took him by the crown, and bare him by the hair of his head, and through the vehemency of his spirit set him in Babylon over the den.

37 And Habbacuc cried, saying, O Daniel, Daniel, take the dinner which God hath sent thee.

38 And Daniel said, Thou hast remembered me, O God: neither hast thou forsaken them that seek thee and love thee.

39 So Daniel arose, and did eat: and the angel of the Lord set Habbacuc in his own place again immediately.

40 Upon the seventh day the king went to bewail Daniel: and when he came to the den, he looked in, and behold, Daniel was sitting.

41 Then cried the king with a loud voice, saying, Great art Lord God of Daniel, and there is none other beside thee.

42 And he drew him out, and cast those that were the cause of his destruction into the den: and they were devoured in a moment before his face.

Click this link to download a PDF file of this lesson.


The Song of the Three Children

which followeth in the third Chapter of DANIEL, after this place, — fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace — verse 23. That which followeth is not in the Hebrew, to wit, And they walked — unto these words, Then Nebuchadnezzar — verse 24.



AND they walked in the midst of the fire, praising God, and blessing the Lord.

2  Then Azarias stood up, and prayed on this manner; and opening his mouth in the midst of the fire, said,

3  Blessed art thou, O Lord God of our fathers: thy name is worthy to be praised and glorified for evermore:

4  For thou art righteous in all the things that thou hast done to us: yea, true are all thy works, thy ways are right, and all thy judgments truth.

5  In all the things that thou hast brought upon us, and upon the holy city of our fathers, even Jerusalem, thou hast executed true judgment: for according to truth and judgment didst thou bring all these things upon us because of our sins.

6  For we have sinned and committed iniquity, departing from thee.

7  In all things have we trespassed, and not obeyed thy commandments, nor kept them, neither done as thou hast commanded us, that it might go well with us.

8  Wherefore all that thou hast brought upon us, and everything that thou hast done to us, thou hast done in true judgment.

9  And thou didst deliver us into the hands of lawless enemies, most hateful forsakers of God, and to an unjust king, and the most wicked in all the world.

10 And now we cannot open our mouths, we are become a shame and reproach to thy servants, and to them that worship thee.

11 Yet deliver us not up wholly, for thy name’s sake, neither disannul thou thy covenant:

12 And cause not thy mercy to depart from us, for thy beloved Abraham’s sake, for thy servant Isaac’s sake, and for thy holy Israel’s sake;

13 To whom thou hast spoken and promised, that thou wouldest multiply their seed as the stars of heaven, and as the sand that lieth upon the sea shore.

14 For we, O Lord, are become less than any nation, and be kept under this day in all the world because of our sins.

15 Neither is there at this time prince, or prophet, or leader, or burnt offering, or sacrifice, or oblation, or incense, or place to sacrifice before thee, and to find mercy.

16 Nevertheless in a contrite heart and an humble spirit let us be accepted.

17 Like as in the burnt offerings of rams and bullocks, and like as in ten thousands of fat lambs: so let our sacrifice be in thy sight this day, and grant that we may wholly go after thee: for they shall not be confounded that put their trust in thee.

18 And now we follow thee with all our heart, we fear thee, and seek thy face.

19 Put us not to shame: but deal with us after thy loving kindness, and according to the multitude of thy mercies.

20 Deliver us also according to thy marvellous works, and give glory to thy name, O Lord: and let all them that do thy servants hurt be ashamed;

21 And let them be confounded in all their power and might, and let their strength be broken;

22 And let them know that thou art Lord, the only God, and glorious over the whole world.

23 And the king’s servants, that put them in, ceased not to make the oven hot with rosin, pitch, tow, and small wood;

24 So that the flame streamed forth above the furnace forty and nine cubits.

25 And it passed through, and burned those Chaldeans it found about the furnace.

26 But the angel of the Lord came down into the oven together with Azarias and his fellows, and smote the flame of the fire out of the oven;

27 And made the midst of the furnace as it had been a moist whistling wind, so that the fire touched them not at all, neither hurt nor troubled them.

28 Then the three, as out of one mouth, praised, glorified, and blessed God in the furnace, saying,

29 Blessed art thou, O Lord God of our fathers: and to be praised and exalted above all for ever.

Click this link to download a PDF file of this lesson.


The Story of Susanna, verses 1 – 62 from The Apocrypha of the King James Version


There dwelt a man in Babylon, called Joacim: And he took a wife, whose name was Susanna, the daughter of Chelcias, a very fair woman, and one that feared the Lord. Her parents also were righteous, and taught their daughter according to the law of Moses. Now Joacim was a great rich man, and had a fair garden joining unto his house: and to him resorted the Jews; because he was more honourable than all others. The same year were appointed two of the ancients of the people to be judges, such as the Lord spake of, that wickedness came from Babylon from ancient judges, who seemed to govern the people. These kept much at Joacim’s house: and all that had any suits in law came unto them. Now when the people departed away at noon, Susanna went into her husband’s garden to walk. And the two elders saw her going in every day, and walking; so that their lust was inflamed toward her. And they perverted their own mind, and turned away their eyes, that they might not look unto heaven, nor remember just judgments. And albeit they both were wounded with her love, yet durst not one shew another his grief. For they were ashamed to declare their lust, that they desired to have to do with her. Yet they watched diligently from day to day to see her. And the one said to the other, Let us now go home: for it is dinner time. So when they were gone out, they parted the one from the other, and turning back again they came to the same place; and after that they had asked one another the cause, they acknowledged their lust: then appointed they a time both together, when they might find her alone. And it fell out, as they watched a fit time, she went in as before with two maids only, and she was desirous to wash herself in the garden: for it was hot. And there was no body there save the two elders, that had hid themselves, and watched her. Then she said to her maids, Bring me oil and washing balls, and shut the garden doors, that I may wash me. And they did as she bade them, and shut the garden doors, and went out themselves at privy doors to fetch the things that she had commanded them: but they saw not the elders, because they were hid. Now when the maids were gone forth, the two elders rose up, and ran unto her, saying, Behold, the garden doors are shut, that no man can see us, and we are in love with thee; therefore consent unto us, and lie with us. If thou wilt not, we will bear witness against thee, that a young man was with thee: and therefore thou didst send away thy maids from thee. Then Susanna sighed, and said, I am straitened on every side: for if I do this thing, it is death unto me: and if I do it not I cannot escape your hands. It is better for me to fall into your hands, and not do it, than to sin in the sight of the Lord. With that Susanna cried with a loud voice: and the two elders cried out against her. Then ran the one, and opened the garden door. So when the servants of the house heard the cry in the garden, they rushed in at the privy door, to see what was done unto her. But when the elders had declared their matter, the servants were greatly ashamed: for there was never such a report made of Susanna. And it came to pass the next day, when the people were assembled to her husband Joacim, the two elders came also full of mischievous imagination against Susanna to put her to death; And said before the people, Send for Susanna, the daughter of Chelcias, Joacim’s wife. And so they sent. So she came with her father and mother, her children, and all her kindred. Now Susanna was a very delicate woman, and beauteous to behold.And these wicked men commanded to uncover her face, (for she was covered) that they might be filled with her beauty.Therefore her friends and all that saw her wept. Then the two elders stood up in the midst of the people, and laid their hands upon her head. And she weeping looked up toward heaven: for her heart trusted in the Lord. And the elders said, As we walked in the garden alone, this woman came in with two maids, and shut the garden doors, and sent the maids away. Then a young man, who there was hid, came unto her, and lay with her. Then we that stood in a corner of the garden, seeing this wickedness, ran unto them. And when we saw them together, the man we could not hold: for he was stronger than we, and opened the door, and leaped out. But having taken this woman, we asked who the young man was, but she would not tell us: these things do we testify. Then the assembly believed them as those that were the elders and judges of the people: so they condemned her to death. Then Susanna cried out with a loud voice, and said, O everlasting God, that knowest the secrets, and knowest all things before they be: Thou knowest that they have borne false witness against me, and, behold, I must die; whereas I never did such things as these men have maliciously invented against me. And the Lord heard her voice. Therefore when she was led to be put to death, the Lord raised up the holy spirit of a young youth whose name was Daniel: Who cried with a loud voice, I am clear from the blood of this woman. Then all the people turned them toward him, and said, What mean these words that thou hast spoken? So he standing in the midst of them said, Are ye such fools, ye sons of Israel, that without examination or knowledge of the truth ye have condemned a daughter of Israel? Return again to the place of judgment: for they have borne false witness against her. Wherefore all the people turned again in haste, and the elders said unto him, Come, sit down among us, and shew it us, seeing God hath given thee the honour of an elder. Then said Daniel unto them, Put these two aside one far from another, and I will examine them. So when they were put asunder one from another, he called one of them, and said unto him, O thou that art waxen old in wickedness, now thy sins which thou hast committed aforetime are come to light. For thou hast pronounced false judgment and hast condemned the innocent and hast let the guilty go free; albeit the Lord saith, The innocent and righteous shalt thou not slay. Now then, if thou hast seen her, tell me, Under what tree sawest thou them companying together? Who answered, Under a mastick tree. And Daniel said, Very well; thou hast lied against thine own head; for even now the angel of God hath received the sentence of God to cut thee in two. So he put him aside, and commanded to bring the other, and said unto him, O thou seed of Chanaan, and not of Juda, beauty hath deceived thee, and lust hath perverted thine heart. Thus have ye dealt with the daughters of Israel, and they for fear companied with you: but the daughter of Juda would not abide your wickedness. Now therefore tell me, Under what tree didst thou take them companying together? Who answered, Under an holm tree. Then said Daniel unto him, Well; thou hast also lied against thine own head: for the angel of God waiteth with the sword to cut thee in two, that he may destroy you. With that all the assembly cried out with a loud voice, and praised God, who saveth them that trust in him. And they arose against the two elders, for Daniel had convicted them of false witness by their own mouth: And according to the law of Moses they did unto them in such sort as they maliciously intended to do to their neighbour: and they put them to death. Thus the innocent blood was saved the same day.

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N019 – 1st Sunday of Lent

1st Sunday of Lent

Collect: O Lord, who for our sake didst fast forty days and forty nights; Give us grace to use such abstinence, that, our flesh being subdued to the Spirit, we may ever obey thy godly motions in righteousness, and true holiness, to thy honour and glory, who lives and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.

The Introit. Ps. 91:15-16. (v 23-26) (Invocabit me) He shall call on me and I will hear him: I will deliver him and bring him to honour: with long life will I satisfy him. Ps. 91:1. Whoso dwelleth under the defence of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

The Epistle: 2nd Corinthians 6:1-10. (Now is the acceptable time and the day of salvation. In all things we are tested and proved by very many adversities. “…as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.”)

Gradual Ps. 91:11-12. God shall give his Angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. They shall bear thee in their hands, that thou hurt not thy foot against a stone.

Tract. Ps.91:1-16.

  1. Whoso dwelleth under the defence of the most High * shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
  2. I will say unto the Lord, Thou art my hope, and my stronghold * my God, in him will I trust.
  3. For he shall deliver thee from the snare of the hunter * and from the noisome pestilence.
  4. He shall defend thee under his wings, and thou shalt be safe under his feathers * his faithfulness and truth shall be thy shield and buckler.
  5. Thou shalt not be afraid for any terror by night * nor for the arrow that flieth by day;
  6. For the pestilence that walketh in darkness * nor for the sickness that destroyeth in the noon-day.
  7. A thousand shall fall beside thee, and ten thousand at thy right hand * but it shall not come nigh thee.
  8. Yea, with thine eyes shalt thou behold * and see the reward of the ungodly.
  9. For thou, Lord, art my hope * thou hast set thine house of defence very high.
  10. There shall no evil happen unto thee * neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.
  11. For he shall give his angels charge over thee * to keep thee in all thy ways.
  12. They shall bear thee in their hands * that thou hurt not thy foot against a stone.
  13. Thou shalt go upon the lion and adder * the young lion and the dragon shalt thou tread under thy feet.
  14. Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him * I will set him up, because he hath known my Name.
  15. He shall call upon me, and I will hear him * yea, I am with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and bring him to honour.
  16. With long life will I satisfy him * and shew him my salvation.

The Gospel. St. Matthew 4:1-11 (Jesus fasts forty days in the desert. The devil then tempts Him in three different ways, but Jesus refused and defeated him.)

Offertory & Communion. Ps. 91:4 The Lord shall defend thee under his wings, and thou shalt be safe under his feathers: his faithfulness and truth shall be thy shield and buckler

At the Divine Office – Benedictus and Magnificat Antiphons

At 1st  Vespers: Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer: thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here am I.

At Matins: Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil: and when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.

At 2nd Vespers: Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation: let us therefore in all thing approve ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in watchings, in fastings, and by love unfeigned.

Click here to download a PDF file of this Minor Proper Click here to download a PDF file of the talk for the 1st Sunday of Lent that goes with this Minor Proper.

N017 – Quinquagesima Sunday

Quinquagesima Sunday

The 1st Sunday before Lent 

The Collect. O Lord, who hast taught us that all our doings without charity are nothing worth; Send thy Holy Ghost, and pour into our hearts that most excellent gift of charity, the very bond of peace and of all virtues, without which whosoever liveth is counted dead before thee. Grant this for thine only Son Jesus Christ’s sake: Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the same Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen.

The Introit. Ps 31 (Esto mihi) Be thou my strong rock and house of defense that thou mayest save me: for thou art my strong rock and my castle, be thou also my guide and lead me for thy Name’s sake. Ps ibid. In thee, O Lord, have I put my trust; let me never be put to confusion: deliver me in thy righteousness and save me.

Epistle. 1st Corinthians 13:1-13 (St Paul tells of the importance of charity; he then tells us that we must grow in the faith. We must put away childish things and take on adult things. We must put on faith, hope, and charity; of these the greatest is charity.)

Gradual. Ps. 87. Thou art the God that only doeth wonders: and hast declared thy power among the people. Thou hast mightily delivered thy people, even the sons of Jacob and Joseph.

Tract. Ps 100 O be joyful in the Lord, all ye lands: serve the Lord with gladness. Come before his presence with a song: be ye sure that the Lord, he is God. It is he that hath made us and not we ourselves: we are his people and the sheep of his pasture.

Gospel. St. Luke 18:31-43 (Jesus foretells His Passion, Death, and Resurrection to the Apostles, then proceeds to Jerusalem. On the way there, near Jericho, He encountered a blind beggar and restored his sight when asked.)

Offertory. Ps 119 Blessed art thou, O Lord: O teach me thy statutes. With my lips have I been telling of all the judgments of thy mouth.

Communion Ps 78 They did eat and were well filled, for the Lord gave them their own desire: they were not disappointed of their lust.

At the Divine Office – Benedictus and Magnificat Antiphons

 At 1st  Vespers: Mighty Abraham, the father of our faith, offered a burnt offering upon the altar, instead of his son.

At Matins: Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished: for he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitted on; and thy shall scourge him, and put him to death; and the third day he shall rise again.

At 2nd Vespers: And Jesus stood, and commanded him to be brought unto him, and asked him, saying: what wilt thou that I shall do unto thee? Lord, that I may receive my sight. And Jesus said unto him, Receive thy sight, thy faith hath saved thee. And straightway he received his sight, and followed him, glorifying God.

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