Place yourself at Toledo: in the cathedral’s Mozarabic Rite chapel the faithful, silent, stand; silently, at this penitential season, the priest and his ministers advance to God’s altar; still without speaking, the priest bows awhile in prayer, then ascends the altar steps, kisses it, and goes to stand at his seat, where at length he first opens his mouth and salutes the congregation. All attend to the readings that now begin. A lector reads out the first lessson at the lectern; after he finishes, another takes his place. The Old Testament lessons ended, the choir chants; a third lector reads the Epistle. Next the deacon, with cerifers and thurifer, proceeds to the lectern to read the Gospel, first saluting the people (who stand in reverence), then censing the sacred volume. The deacon having ended, then the priest having preached, again the choir sings God’s praises. Next would come the offering of the Sacrifice…
But let us at the least unite ourselves to the Mass at Toledo by some participation in the Service of the Word, before in prayer making a spiritual communion as our devotion suggests.
Friday in the fourth week of Lent
Feria VI in quarta hebdomada Quadragesimæ
Sapiential Lesson: Proverbs 26,18-28
Historical Lection: 1 Samuel 16,1-12
Threni: Job 16,7a.8.10-11.13-14
Apostle: 2 Peter 3,3-9
Gospel: John 8,21-30
Laudes: Psalm 108,30-31
The Lord be ever with you. R/. And with thy spirit.
A Lesson from the Book of Proverbs. R/. Thanks be to God.
As he is guilty that shooteth arrows, and lances unto death: so is the man that hurteth his friend deceitfully: and when he is taken, saith: I did it in jest. When the wood faileth, the fire shall go out: and when the talebearer is taken away, contentions shall cease. As coals are to burning coals, and wood to fire, so an angry man stirreth up strife. The words of a talebearer are as it were simple, but they reach to the innermost parts of the belly. Swelling lips joined with a corrupt heart, are like an earthen vessel adorned with silver dross. An enemy is known by his lips, when in his heart he entertaineth deceit. When he shall speak low, trust him not: because there are seven mischiefs in his heart. He that covereth hatred deceitfully, his malice shall be laid open in the public assembly. He that diggeth a pit, shall fall into it: and he that rolleth a stone, it shall return to him. A deceitful tongue loveth not truth: and a slippery mouth worketh ruin.
A Lesson from the First Book of Samuel. R/. Thanks be to God.
In those days:
And the Lord said to Samuel: How long wilt thou mourn for Saul, whom I have rejected from reigning over Israel? fill thy horn with oil, and come, that I may send thee to Isai the Bethlehemite: for I have provided me a king among his sons. And Samuel said: How shall I go? for Saul will hear of it, and he will kill me. And the Lord said: Thou shalt take with thee a calf of the herd, and thou shalt say: I am come to sacrifice to the Lord. And thou shalt call Isai to the sacrifice, and I will shew thee what thou art to do, and thou shalt anoint him whom I shall shew to thee. Then Samuel did as the Lord had said to him. And he came to Bethlehem, and the ancients of the city wondered, and meeting him, they said: Is thy coming hither peaceable? And he said: It is peaceable: I am come to offer sacrifice to the Lord, be ye sanctified, and come with me to the sacrifice. And he sanctified Isai and his sons, and called them to the sacrifice. And when they were come in, he saw Eliab, and said: Is the Lord's anointed before him? And the Lord said to Samuel: Look not on his countenance, nor on the height of his stature: because I have rejected him, nor do I judge according to the look of man: for man seeth those things that appear, but the Lord beholdeth the heart. And Isai called Abinadab, and brought him before Samuel. And he said: Neither hath the Lord chosen this. And Isai brought Samma, and he said of him: Neither hath the Lord chosen this. Isai therefore brought his seven sons before Samuel: and Samuel said to Isai: The Lord hath not chosen any one of these. And Samuel said to Isai: Are here all thy sons? He answered: There remaineth yet a young one, who keepeth the sheep. And Samuel said to Isai: Send, and fetch him, for we will not sit down till he come hither. He sent therefore and brought him Now he was ruddy and beautiful to behold, and of a comely face. And the Lord said: Arise, and anoint him, for this is he.
But now my sorrow hath oppressed me: and all my limbs are brought to nothing: my brethren bear witness against me: and a false speaker riseth up against my face.
V/. Enemies have opened their mouths upon me, and reproaching me they have struck me on the cheek: they are filled with my pains: God hath shut me up in the hands of the wicked.
V/. He hath gathered together his fury against me; and threatening me he hath gnashed with his teeth upon me.
The Second Epistle of the Apostle Peter. R/. Thanks be to God.
Knowing this first, that in the last days there shall come deceitful scoffers, walking after their own lusts, saying: Where is his promise or his coming? for since the time that the fathers slept, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation. For this they are wilfully ignorant of, that the heavens were before, and the earth out of water, and through water, consisting by the word of God. Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished. But the heavens and the earth which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of the ungodly men. But of this one thing be not ignorant, my beloved, that one day with the Lord is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord delayeth not his promise, as some imagine, but dealeth patiently for your sake, not willing that any should perish, but that all should return to penance.
The Lord be ever with you. R/. And with thy spirit.
A Lesson from the Holy Gospel according to John. R/. Glory to Thee, O Lord.
At that time:
Again therefore Jesus said to them: I go, and you shall seek me, and you shall die in your sin. Whither I go, you cannot come. The Jews therefore said: Will he kill himself, because he said: Whither I go, you cannot come? And he said to them: You are from beneath, I am from above. You are of this world, I am not of this world. Therefore I said to you, that you shall die in your sins. For if you believe not that I am he, you shall die in your sin. They said therefore to him: Who art thou? Jesus said to them: The beginning, who also speak unto you. Many things I have to speak and to judge of you. But he that sent me, is true: and the things I have heard of him, these same I speak in the world. And they understood not, that he called God his Father. Jesus therefore said to them: When you shall have lifted up the Son of man, then shall you know, that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself, but as the Father hath taught me, these things I speak: and he that sent me, is with me, and he hath not left me alone: for I do always the things that please him. When he spoke these things, many believed in him.
I will give great thanks to the Lord with my mouth: * And in the midst of many I will praise him.
V/. Because he hath stood at the right hand of the poor, to save my soul from persecutors. * And in the midst of many I will praise him.