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.
Thursday in the third week of Lent
Feria V in tertia hebdomada Quadragesimæ
Sapiential Lesson: Proverbs 22,17-29
Historical Lection: Judges 2,6-23
Psallendum: Psalm 7,7b-8a.10a
Apostle: 1 Peter 4,7-11
Gospel: John 6,41-47
Laudes: Psalm 102,1-2
The Lord be ever with you. R/. And with thy spirit.
A Lesson from the Book of Proverbs. R/. Thanks be to God.
Incline thy ear, and hear the words of the wise: and apply thy heart to my doctrine: which shall be beautiful for thee, if thou keep it in thy bowels, and it shall flow in thy lips: that thy trust may be in the Lord, wherefore I have also shewn it to thee this day. Behold I have described it to thee three manner of ways, in thoughts and knowledge: that I might shew thee the certainty, and the words of truth, to answer out of these to them that sent thee. Do no violence to the poor, because he is poor: and do not oppress the needy in the gate: because the Lord will judge his cause, and will afflict them that have afflicted his soul. Be not a friend to an angry man, and do not walk with a furious man: lest perhaps thou learn his ways, and take scandal to thy soul. Be not with them that fasten down their hands, and that offer themselves sureties for debts: for if thou have not wherewith to restore, what cause is there, that he should take the covering from thy bed? Pass not beyond the ancient bounds which thy fathers have set. Hast thou seen a man swift in his work? he shall stand before kings, and shall not be before those that are obscure.
A Lesson from the Book of Judges. R/. Thanks be to God.
In those days:
And Josue sent away the people, and the children of Israel went every one to his own possession to hold it: and they served the Lord all his days, and the days of the ancients, that lived a long time after him, and who knew all the works of the Lord, which he had done for Israel. And Josue the son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died, being a hundred and ten years old, and they buried him in the borders of his possession in Thamnathsare in mount Ephraim, on the north side of mount Gaas. And all that generation was gathered to their fathers: and there arose others that knew not the Lord, and the works which he had done for Israel. And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord, and they served Baalim. And they left the Lord the God of their fathers, who had brought them out of the land of Egypt: and they followed strange gods, and the gods of the people that dwelt round about them, and they adored them: and they provoked the Lord to anger. Forsaking him, and serving Baal and Astaroth. And the Lord being angry against Israel, delivered them into the hands of plunderers: who took them and sold them to their enemies, that dwelt round about: neither could they stand against their enemies: but whithersoever they meant to go, the hand of the Lord was upon them, as he had said, and as he had sworn to them: and they were greatly distressed. And the Lord raised up judges, to deliver them from the hands of those that oppressed them: but they would not hearken to them, committing fornication with strange gods, and adoring them. They quickly forsook the way, in which their fathers had walked: and hearing the commandments of the Lord, they did all things contrary. And when the Lord raised them up judges, in their days he was moved to mercy, and heard the groanings of the afflicted, and delivered them from the slaughter of the oppressors. But after the judge was dead, they returned, and did much worse things than their fathers had done, following strange gods, serving them and adoring them. They left not their own inventions, and the stubborn way, by which they were accustomed to walk. And the wrath of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and he said: Behold this nation hath made void my covenant, which I had made with their fathers, and hath despised to hearken to my voice: I also will not destroy the nations which Josue left, when he died: that through them I may try Israel, whether they will keep the way of the Lord, and walk in it, as their fathers kept it, or not. The Lord therefore left all these nations, and would not quickly destroy them, neither did he deliver them into the hands of Josue.
R/. Arise, O Lord my God, in the precept which thou hast commanded: * And a congregation of people shall surround thee.
V/. The wickedness of sinners shall be brought to nought: and thou shalt direct the just: * And a congregation of people shall surround thee.
The First Epistle of the Apostle Peter. R/. Thanks be to God.
But the end of all is at hand. Be prudent therefore, and watch in prayers. But before all things have a constant mutual charity among yourselves: for charity covereth a multitude of sins. Using hospitality one towards another, without murmuring, as every man hath received grace, ministering the same one to another: as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If any man speak, let him speak, as the words of God. If any man minister, let him do it, as of the power, which God administereth: that in all things God may be honoured through Jesus Christ: to whom is glory and empire for ever and ever. Amen.
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:
The Jews therefore murmured at Jesus, because he had said: I am the living bread which came down from heaven. And they said: Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How then saith he, I came down from heaven? Jesus therefore answered, and said to them: Murmur not among yourselves. No man can come to me, except the Father, who hath sent me, draw him; and I will raise him up in the last day. It is written in the prophets: And they shall all be taught of God. Every one that hath heard of the Father, and hath learned, cometh to me. Draw him: Not by compulsion, nor by laying the free will under any necessity, but by the strong and sweet motions of his heavenly grace. Not that any man hath seen the Father; but he who is of God, he hath seen the Father. Amen, amen I say unto you: He that believeth in me, hath everlasting life.
Bless the Lord, O my soul: * And let all that is within me bless his holy name.
V/. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and never forget all he hath done for thee. * And let all that is within me bless his holy name.