Daily Readings

Friday of the First Week of Lent

Reading I Ez 18:21-28

Thus says the Lord GOD: If the wicked man turns away from all the sins he committed,      if he keeps all my statutes and does what is right and just,     he shall surely live, he shall not die.  None of the crimes he committed shall be remembered against him;     he shall live because of the virtue he has practiced.  Do I indeed derive any pleasure from the death of the wicked?     says the Lord GOD.  Do I not rather rejoice when he turns from his evil way     that he may live?

And if the virtuous man turns from the path of virtue to do evil,     the same kind of abominable things that the wicked man does,     can he do this and still live? None of his virtuous deeds shall be remembered,     because he has broken faith and committed sin;     because of this, he shall die.  You say, “The LORD’s way is not fair!”  Hear now, house of Israel:     Is it my way that is unfair, or rather, are not your ways unfair? When someone virtuous turns away from virtue to commit iniquity, and dies,     it is because of the iniquity he committed that he must die. But if the wicked, turning from the wickedness he has committed,     does what is right and just,     he shall preserve his life;     since he has turned away from all the sins that he committed,      he shall surely live, he shall not die.

Responsorial Psalm 130:1-2, 3-4, 5-7a, 7bc-8

R.    (3) If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand? Out of the depths I cry to you, O LORD;     LORD, hear my voice! Let your ears be attentive     to my voice in supplication. R.    If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand? If you, O LORD, mark iniquities,     LORD, who can stand? But with you is forgiveness,     that you may be revered.  R.    If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand? I trust in the LORD;     my soul trusts in his word. My soul waits for the LORD     more than sentinels wait for the dawn.     Let Israel wait for the LORD. R.    If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand? For with the LORD is kindness     and with him is plenteous redemption; And he will redeem Israel     from all their iniquities. R.    If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand?

Verse before the Gospel Ez 18:31

Cast away from you all the crimes you have committed, says the LORD, and make for yourselves a new heart and a new spirit.

Gospel Mt 5:20-26

Jesus said to his disciples:  “I tell you,  unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter into the Kingdom of heaven.

“You have heard that it was said to your ancestors, You shall not kill; and whoever kills will be liable to judgment. But I say to you, whoever is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment, and whoever says to his brother, Raqa,  will be answerable to the Sanhedrin, and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ will be liable to fiery Gehenna. Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar, and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift there at the altar, go first and be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Settle with your opponent quickly while on the way to court. Otherwise your opponent will hand you over to the judge, and the judge will hand you over to the guard, and you will be thrown into prison. Amen, I say to you, you will not be released until you have paid the last penny.”

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Lectionary for Mass for Use in the Dioceses of the United States, second typical edition, Copyright © 2001, 1998, 1997, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine; Psalm refrain © 1968, 1981, 1997, International Committee on English in the Liturgy, Inc. All rights reserved. Neither this work nor any part of it may be reproduced, distributed, performed or displayed in any medium, including electronic or digital, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Author: USCCB
Posted: February 26, 2021, 9:30 am

Thursday of the First Week of Lent

Reading I Est C:12, 14-16, 23-25

Queen Esther, seized with mortal anguish, had recourse to the LORD. She lay prostrate upon the ground, together with her handmaids,  from morning until evening, and said: “God of Abraham, God of Isaac, and God of Jacob, blessed are you.  Help me, who am alone and have no help but you, for I am taking my life in my hand. As a child I used to hear from the books of my forefathers that you, O LORD, always free those who are pleasing to you. Now help me, who am alone and have no one but you, O LORD, my God.

“And now, come to help me, an orphan. Put in my mouth persuasive words in the presence of the lion and turn his heart to hatred for our enemy, so that he and those who are in league with him may perish. Save us from the hand of our enemies; turn our mourning into gladness and our sorrows into wholeness.”

Responsorial Psalm 138:1-2ab, 2cde-3, 7c-8

R.    (3a)  Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me. I will give thanks to you, O LORD, with all my heart,     for you have heard the words of my mouth;     in the presence of the angels I will sing your praise; I will worship at your holy temple     and give thanks to your name. R.    Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me. Because of your kindness and your truth;     for you have made great above all things     your name and your promise. When I called, you answered me;     you built up strength within me. R.    Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me. Your right hand saves me. The LORD will complete what he has done for me;     your kindness, O LORD, endures forever;     forsake not the work of your hands. R.    Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me.

Verse before the Gospel Ps 51:12a, 14a

A clean heart create for me, O God; give me back the joy of your salvation.

Gospel Mt 7:7-12

Jesus said to his disciples: “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and the one who seeks, finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.  Which one of you would hand his son a stone when he asked for a loaf of bread, or a snake when he asked for a fish? If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good things to those who ask him.

“Do to others whatever you would have them do to you.  This is the law and the prophets.”

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Lectionary for Mass for Use in the Dioceses of the United States, second typical edition, Copyright © 2001, 1998, 1997, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine; Psalm refrain © 1968, 1981, 1997, International Committee on English in the Liturgy, Inc. All rights reserved. Neither this work nor any part of it may be reproduced, distributed, performed or displayed in any medium, including electronic or digital, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Author: USCCB
Posted: February 25, 2021, 9:30 am

Wednesday of the First Week of Lent

Reading I Jon 3:1-10

The word of the LORD came to Jonah a second time: “Set out for the great city of Nineveh, and announce to it the message that I will tell you.” So Jonah made ready and went to Nineveh, according to the LORD’s bidding. Now Nineveh was an enormously large city; it took three days to go through it. Jonah began his journey through the city, and had gone but a single day’s walk announcing, “Forty days more and Nineveh shall be destroyed,” when the people of Nineveh believed God; they proclaimed a fast and all of them, great and small, put on sackcloth.

When the news reached the king of Nineveh, he rose from his throne, laid aside his robe, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in the ashes. Then he had this proclaimed throughout Nineveh, by decree of the king and his nobles: “Neither man nor beast, neither cattle nor sheep, shall taste anything; they shall not eat, nor shall they drink water.  Man and beast shall be covered with sackcloth and call loudly to God; every man shall turn from his evil way and from the violence he has in hand. Who knows, God may relent and forgive, and withhold his blazing wrath, so that we shall not perish.” When God saw by their actions how they turned from their evil way, he repented of the evil that he had threatened to do to them; he did not carry it out.

Responsorial Psalm 51:3-4, 12-13, 18-19

R.    (19b) A heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn. Have mercy on me, O God, in your goodness;     in the greatness of your compassion wipe out my offense. Thoroughly wash me from my guilt     and of my sin cleanse me. R.    A heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn. A clean heart create for me, O God,     and a steadfast spirit renew within me. Cast me not out from your presence,     and your Holy Spirit take not from me.  R.    A heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn. For you are not pleased with sacrifices;     should I offer a burnt offering, you would not accept it. My sacrifice, O God, is a contrite spirit;     a heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn. R.    A heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn.

Verse before the Gospel Jl 2:12-13

Even now, says the LORD, return to me with your whole heart for I am gracious and merciful.

Gospel Lk 11:29-32

While still more people gathered in the crowd, Jesus said to them, “This generation is an evil generation; it seeks a sign, but no sign will be given it, except the sign of Jonah.  Just as Jonah became a sign to the Ninevites, so will the Son of Man be to this generation. At the judgment  the queen of the south will rise with the men of this generation  and she will condemn them, because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and there is something greater than Solomon here.  At the judgment the men of Nineveh will arise with this generation and condemn it, because at the preaching of Jonah they repented, and there is something greater than Jonah here.”

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Lectionary for Mass for Use in the Dioceses of the United States, second typical edition, Copyright © 2001, 1998, 1997, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine; Psalm refrain © 1968, 1981, 1997, International Committee on English in the Liturgy, Inc. All rights reserved. Neither this work nor any part of it may be reproduced, distributed, performed or displayed in any medium, including electronic or digital, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Author: USCCB
Posted: February 24, 2021, 9:30 am

 

Readings courtesy of USCCB