Breviary

Office of Readings

INVITATORY

The Invitatory is said when this is the first ‘hour’ of the day.

Go to the Hymn

Go to the Psalmody

Lord, + open my lips.
And my mouth will proclaim your praise.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

The antiphon is repeated. In individual recitation, the antiphon may be said only at the beginning of the psalm; it need not be repeated after each strophe.

Go to Psalm 24

Go to Psalm 67

Go to Psalm 100

Psalm 95
A call to praise God


Encourage each other daily while it is still today (Hebrews 3:13).

Come, let us sing to the Lord *
  and shout with joy to the Rock who saves us.
Let us approach him with praise and thanksgiving *
  and sing joyful songs to the Lord.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

The Lord is God, the mighty God, *
  the great king over all the gods.
He holds in his hands the depths of the earth *
  and the highest mountains as well.
He made the sea; it belongs to him, *
  the dry land, too, for it was formed by his hands.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Come, then, let us bow down and worship, *
  bending the knee before the Lord, our maker.
For he is our God and we are his people, *
  the flock he shepherds.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Today, listen to the voice of the Lord:
Do not grow stubborn, as your fathers did
  in the wilderness, *
when at Meriba and Massah
  they challenged me and provoked me, *
Although they had seen all of my works.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Forty years I endured that generation. *
I said, “They are a people whose hearts go astray
  and they do not know my ways.”
So I swore in my anger, *
  “They shall not enter into my rest.”

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

If the Invitatory is not said, then the following is used:

God, + come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia.

HYMN

In ancient times God spoke to man
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.

Tune: Herr Jesu Christ mein Lebens Licht L.M.
Music: As Hymnodus Sacer, Leipzig 1625
Text: © Stanbrook Abbey, used with permission

PSALMODY

Ant. 1 Rise up, Lord, and come to my aid.

Psalm 35:1-2, 3c, 9-19, 22-23, 27-28
The Lord as Savior in time of persecution


They came together . . . and laid their plans to capture Jesus by treachery and put him to death (Matthew 26:3-4).

I

O Lord, plead my cause against my foes; *
fight those who fight me.
Take up your buckler and shield; *
arise to help me.

O Lord, say to my soul: *
“I am your salvation.”

But my soul shall be joyful in the Lord *
and rejoice in his salvation.
My whole being will say: *
“Lord, who is like you
who rescue the weak from the strong *
and the poor from the oppressor?”

Lying witnesses arise *
and accuse me unjustly.
They repay me evil for good: *
my soul is forlorn.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Rise up, Lord, and come to my aid.

Ant. 2 All-powerful Lord, stand by me and defend me.

II

When they were sick I went into mourning, *
afflicted with fasting.
My prayer was ever on my lips, *
as for a brother, a friend.
I went as though mourning a mother, *
bowed down with grief.

Now that I am in trouble they gather, *
they gather and mock me.
They take me by surprise and strike me *
and tear me to pieces.
They provoke me with mockery on mockery *
and gnash their teeth.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. All-powerful Lord, stand by me and defend me.

Ant. 3 My tongue will speak of your goodness all the day long.

III

O Lord, how long will you look on? *
Come to my rescue!
Save my life from these raging beasts, *
my soul from these lions.
I will thank you in the great assembly, *
amid the throng I will praise you.

Do not let my lying foes *
rejoice over me.
Do not let those who hate me unjustly *
wink eyes at each other.

O Lord, you have seen, do not be silent, *
do not stand afar off!
Awake, stir to my defense, *
to my cause, O God!

Let there be joy for those who love my cause. *
Let them say without end:
“Great is the Lord who delights *
in the peace of his servant.”
Then my tongue shall speak of your justice, *
all day long of your praise.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm Prayer

Lord, you rescue the poor from their oppressors, and you rose to the aid of your beloved Son against those who unjustly sought his life. Look on your Church as we journey to you, that the poor and weak may recognize the help you provide and proclaim your saving acts.

Ant. My tongue will speak of your goodness all the day long.

My son, take my words to heart.
Do as I say, and you will live.

READINGS

FIRST READING

From the second book of Samuel
7:1-25

The messianic prophecy of Nathan


When King David was settled in his palace, and the Lord had given him rest from his enemies on every side, he said to Nathan the prophet, “Here I am living in a house of cedar, while the ark of God dwells in a tent!” Nathan answered the king, “Go, do whatever you have in mind, for the Lord is with you.”

But that night the Lord spoke to Nathan and said: “Go, tell my servant David, ‘Thus says the Lord: Should you build me a house to dwell in? I have not dwelt in a house from the day on which I led the Israelites out of Egypt to the present, but I have been going about in a tent under cloth. In all my wanderings everywhere among the Israelites, did I ever utter a word to any one of the judges whom I charged to tend my people Israel, to ask: Why have you not built me a house of cedar?’

“Now then, speak thus to my servant David, ‘The Lord of hosts has this to say: It was I who took you from the pasture and from the care of the flock to be commander of my people Israel. I have been with you wherever you went, and I have destroyed all your enemies before you. And I will make you famous like the great ones of the earth. I will fix a place for my people Israel; I will plant them so that they may dwell in their place without further disturbance. Neither shall the wicked continue to afflict them as they did of old, since the time I first appointed judges over my people Israel. I will give you rest from all your enemies. The Lord also reveals to you that he will establish a house for you. And when your time comes and you rest with your ancestors, I will raise up your heir after you, sprung from your loins, and I will make his kingdom firm. It is he who shall build a house for my name. And I will make his royal throne firm forever. I will be a father to him, and he shall be a son to me. And if he does wrong, I will correct him with the rod of men and with human chastisements; but I will not withdraw my favor from him as I withdrew it from your predecessor Saul, whom I removed from my presence. Your house and your kingdom shall endure forever before me; your throne shall stand firm forever.’”

Nathan reported all these words and this entire vision to David.

Then King David went in and sat before the Lord and said, “Who am I, Lord God, and who are the members of my house, that you have brought me to this point? Yet even this you see as too little, Lord God; you have also spoken of the house of your servant for a long time to come: this too you have shown to man, Lord God! What more can David say to you? You know your servant, Lord God! For your servant’s sake and as you have had at heart, you have brought about this entire magnificent disclosure to your servant. And so—

“Great are you, Lord God! There is none like you and there is no God but you, just as we have heard it told. What other nation on earth is there like your people Israel, which God has led, redeeming it as his people; so that you have made yourself renowned by doing this magnificent deed, and by doing awe-inspiring things as you cleared nations and their gods out of the way of your people, which you redeemed for yourself from Egypt? You have established for yourself your people Israel as yours forever, and you, Lord, have become their God. And now, Lord God, confirm for all time the prophecy you have made concerning your servant and his house, and do as you have promised.”

RESPONSORY
See Luke 1:30-32; Psalm 132:11


The angel Gabriel spoke to Mary and said:
You will conceive and bear a son,
and the Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David.
He will rule over the house of Jacob for ever.

The Lord swore an oath to David
from which he will not withdraw:
I will set your own son upon your throne.
He will rule over the house of Jacob for ever.

SECOND READING

From a book on the Predestination of the Saints by Saint Augustine, bishop
(Cap. 15, 30-31: PL 44, 981-983)

In his human nature Jesus Christ is descended from the line of David


The greatest glory of predestination and grace is the Savior himself, the mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus. What, I ask you, did his human nature do in the way of good works or of faith to merit beforehand this glory? Give me an answer to this question: How did his humanity merit to be taken up by the Word, coeternal with the Father, into unity with his person and so to be the only-begotten Son of God? What goodness, of whatever kind, did he possess beforehand? What had he done, what faith had he shown, what request had he made, that he should attain to that point of preeminence, beyond all human power of description? Was it not through the action of the Word in taking this humanity to himself that, from the moment when he came into existence, this human being came into existence as the only Son of God?

We must keep before our eyes the very source of grace, taking its origin in Christ, our head, and flowing through all his members according to the capacity of each. The grace which makes any man a Christian from the first moment of his coming to believe is the same grace which made this man the Christ from his coming to be as man. The Spirit through whom men are reborn is the same Spirit through whom Christ was born. The Spirit by whom we receive forgiveness of sins is the same Spirit who brought it about that Christ knew no sin. Clearly, God knew that he would do all this. The predestination of the saints is the same predestination that reached its greatest glory in the Saint above all other saints. Who can deny this among those who understand correctly the utterances of Truth? For we have been taught that inasmuch as the son of God became man, the Lord of glory himself was the object of predestination.

Jesus then was predestined. He who was to be the son of David in his human nature was to be the Son of God in power through the action of the Spirit of holiness, for he was born of the Holy Spirit and of the Virgin Mary. This unique taking to himself of a human nature by God the Word came about in such a way, too mysterious for our understanding, that with truth and accuracy the Word could be called at one and the same time the Son of God and the son of man: son of man because of the human nature that was taken, and Son of God because it was the only-begotten God who took that human nature. We are not to believe in God as a quaternity but as a trinity.

Human nature was in this case predestined to so marvelous, so sublime, so perfect a dignity that it could not be raised higher; just as the divine nature itself could not demean itself any lower than by taking human nature with all its weakness, even to dying on a cross. Just as one Christ was predestined to be our head, so we, the many, were predestined to be his members. Let there be no mention here of human merits; they were lost through Adam. Let God’s grace reign supreme, as it does through Jesus Christ, our Lord, the only Son of God, the one Lord. If anyone can find in Christ, our head, any merits preceding his unique birth, he may look also for merits in ourselves preceding our rebirth as his many members.

RESPONSORY
See Galatians 4:4-5; Ephesians 2:4; Romans 8:3


When at last the appointed time had come,
God sent his Son into the world,
born of a virgin, subject to the law,
to redeem those who were subject to the law.

Because of his great love for us,
God sent his Son in the likeness of our sinful human nature.
To redeem those who were subject to the law.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Let us pray.

Father,
you call your children to walk in the light of Christ.
Free us from darkness
and keep us in the radiance of truth.
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

Or:

O God, who through the grace of adoption
chose us to be children of light,
grant, we pray,
that we may not be wrapped in the darkness of error
but always be seen to stand in the bright light of truth.
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.

ACCLAMATION

Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.

******

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Psalm 24
The Lord’s entry into his temple


Christ opened heaven for us in the manhood he assumed (Saint Irenaeus).

The Lord’s is the earth and its fullness, *
the world and all its peoples.
It is he who set it on the seas; *
on the waters he made it firm.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Who shall climb the mountain of the Lord? *
Who shall stand in his holy place?
The man with clean hands and pure heart,
who desires not worthless things, *
who has not sworn so as to deceive his neighbor.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

He shall receive blessings from the Lord *
and reward from the God who saves him.
Such are the men who seek him, *
seek the face of the God of Jacob.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

O gates, lift high your heads;
grow higher, ancient doors. *
Let him enter, the king of glory!

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Who is the king of glory?
The Lord, the mighty, the valiant, *
the Lord, the valiant in war.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

O gates, lift high your heads;
grow higher, ancient doors. *
Let him enter, the king of glory!

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Who is he, the king of glory?
He, the Lord of armies, *
he is the king of glory.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Go to the Hymn

Psalm 67
People of all nations will worship the Lord


You must know that God is offering his salvation to all the world (Acts 28:28).

O God, be gracious and bless us *
and let your face shed its light upon us.
So will your ways be known upon earth *
and all nations learn your saving help.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Let the peoples praise you, O God; *
let all the peoples praise you.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Let the nations be glad and exult *
for you rule the world with justice.
With fairness you rule the peoples, *
you guide the nations on earth.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Let the peoples praise you, O God; *
let all the peoples praise you.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

The earth has yielded its fruit *
for God, our God, has blessed us.
May God still give us his blessing *
till the ends of the earth revere him.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Go to the Hymn

Psalm 100
The joyful song of those entering God’s temple


The Lord calls his ransomed people to sing songs of victory (Saint Athanasius).

Cry out with joy to the Lord, all the earth.
Serve the Lord with gladness. *
Come before him, singing for joy.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Know that he, the Lord, is God.
He made us, we belong to him, *
we are his people, the sheep of his flock.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Go within his gates, giving thanks.
Enter his courts with songs of praise. *
Give thanks to him and bless his name.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Indeed, how good is the Lord,
eternal his merciful love. *
He is faithful from age to age.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Come, let us give thanks to the Lord, for his great love is without end.

Go to the Hymn

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