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.
Wednesday in the fifth week of Lent
Feria IV in quinta hebdomada Quadragesimæ
Sapiential Lesson: Proverbs 23,1-8.12-14
Historical Lection: 2 Samuel 7,1-19
Threni: Job 30,1.9-10.12-13.16
Apostle: 1John 2,18-29
Gospel: John 10,22-42
Laudes: Psalm 70,23a.22a
The Lord be ever with you. R/. And with thy spirit.
A Lesson from the Book of Proverbs. R/. Thanks be to God.
When thou shalt sit to eat with a prince, consider diligently what is set before thy face. And put a knife to thy throat, if it be so that thou have thy soul in thy own power. Be not desirous of his meats, in which is the bread of deceit. Labour not to be rich: but set bounds to thy prudence. Lift not up thy eyes to riches which thou canst not have: because they shall make themselves wings like those of an eagle, and shall fly towards heaven. Eat not with an envious man, and desire not his meats: because like a soothsayer, and diviner, he thinketh that which he knoweth not. Eat and drink, will he say to thee: and his mind is not with thee. The meats which thou hadst eaten, thou shalt vomit up: and shalt loose thy beautiful words.
Let thy heart apply itself to instruction: and thy ears to words of knowledge. Withhold not correction from a child: for if thou strike him with the rod, he shall not die. Thou shalt beat him with the rod, and deliver his soul from hell.
A Lesson from the Second Book of Samuel. R/. Thanks be to God.
In those days:
it came to pass when the king sat in his house, and the Lord had given him rest on every side from all his enemies, he said to Nathan the prophet: Dost thou see that I dwell in a house of cedar, and the ark of God is lodged within skins? And Nathan said to the king: Go, do all that is in thy heart: because the Lord is with thee. But it came to pass that night, that the word of the Lord came to Nathan, saying: Go, and say to my servant David: Thus saith the Lord: Shalt thou build me a house to dwell in? Whereas I have not dwelt in a house from the day that I brought the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt even to this day: but have walked in a tabernacle, and in a tent. In all the places that I have gone through with all the children of Israel, did ever I speak a word to any one of the tribes of Israel, whom I commanded to feed my people Israel, saying: Why have you not built me a house of cedar? And now thus shalt thou speak to my servant David: Thus saith the Lord of hosts: a I took thee out of the pastures from following the sheep to be ruler over my people Israel: and I have been with thee wheresoever thou hast walked, and have slain all thy enemies from before thy face: and I have made thee a great man, like unto the name of the great ones that are on the earth. And I will appoint a place for my people Israel, and I will plant them, and they shall dwell therein, and shall be disturbed no more: neither shall the children of iniquity afflict them any more as they did before, from the day that I appointed judges over my people Israel: and I will give thee rest from all thy enemies. And the Lord foretelleth to thee, that the Lord will make thee a house. And when thy days shall be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will raise up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house to my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom for ever. I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son: and if he commit any iniquity, I will correct him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men. But my mercy I will not take away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I removed from before my face. And thy house shall be faithful, and thy kingdom for ever before thy face, and thy throne shall be firm for ever. According to all these words and according to all this vision, so did Nathan speak to David. And David went in, and sat before the Lord, and said: Who am I, O Lord God, and what is my house, that thou hast brought me thus far? But yet this hath seemed little in thy sight, O Lord God, unless thou didst also speak of the house of thy servant for a long time to come: for this is the law of Adam, O Lord God.
R/. But now my enemies scorn me, now I am turned into their song, they abhor me, and flee far from me, and are not afraid to spit in my face.
V/. At the right hand of my rising, my calamities forthwith arose: they have overthrown my feet, and have overwhelmed me with their paths as with waves.
V/. And now my soul fadeth within myself, and the days of affliction possess me.
The First Epistle of the Apostle John. R/. Thanks be to God.
Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that Antichrist cometh, even now there are become many Antichrists: whereby we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not of us. For if they had been of us, they would no doubt have remained with us; but that they may be manifest, that they are not all of us. But you have the unction from the Holy One, and know all things. I have not written to you as to them that know not the truth, but as to them that know it: and that no lie is of the truth. Who is a liar, but he who denieth that Jesus is the Christ? This is Antichrist, who denieth the Father, and the Son. Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father. He that confesseth the Son, hath the Father also. As for you, let that which you have heard from the beginning, abide in you. If that abide in you, which you have heard from the beginning, you also shall abide in the Son, and in the Father. And this is the promise which he hath promised us, life everlasting. These things have I written to you, concerning them that seduce you. And as for you, let the unction, which you have received from him, abide in you. And you have no need that any man teach you; but as his unction teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie. And as it hath taught you, abide in him. And now, little children, abide in him, that when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be confounded by him at his coming. If you know, that he is just, know ye, that every one also, who doth justice, is born of him.
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:
it was the feast of the dedication at Jerusalem: and it was winter. And Jesus walked in the temple, in Solomon's porch. The Jews therefore came round about him, and said to him: How long dost thou hold our souls in suspense? If thou be the Christ, tell us plainly. Jesus answered them: I speak to you, and you believe not: the works that I do in the name of my Father, they give testimony of me. But you do not believe, because you are not of my sheep. My sheep hear my voice: and I know them, and they follow me. And I give them life everlasting; and they shall not perish for ever, and no man shall pluck them out of my hand. That which my Father hath given me, is greater than all: and no one can snatch them out of the hand of my Father. I and the Father are one. The Jews then took up stones to stone him. Jesus answered them: Many good works I have shewed you from my Father; for which of these works do you stone me? The Jews answered him: For a good work we stone thee not, but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, maketh thyself God. Jesus answered them: Is it not written in your law: I said you are gods? If he called them gods, to whom the word of God was spoken, and the scripture cannot be broken; do you say of him whom the Father hath sanctified and sent into the world: Thou blasphemest, because I said, I am the Son of God? If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do, though you will not believe me, believe the works: that you may know and believe that the Father is in me, and I in the Father. They sought therefore to take him; and he escaped out of their hands. And he went again beyond the Jordan, into that place where John was baptizing first; and there he abode. And many resorted to him, and they said: John indeed did no sign. But all things whatsoever John said of this man, were true. And many believed in him.
My lips shall greatly rejoice, * When I shall sing to thee.
V/. For I will also confess to thee thy truth with the instruments of psaltery: * When I shall sing to thee.