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Mass Reading & Meditation for September 23, 2019 View another date

Meditation: Luke 8:16-18

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Saint Pius of Pietrelcina (Padre Pio), Priest (Memorial)

Entrance Antiphon

Your priests, O Lord, shall be clothed with justice;
your holy ones shall ring out their joy. Cf. Ps 132 (131):9

Collect

Almighty ever-living God, who, by a singular grace,
gave the Priest Saint Pius a share in the Cross of your Son
and, by means of his ministry,
renewed the wonders of your mercy,
grant that through his intercession
we may be united constantly to the sufferings of Christ,
and so brought happily to the glory of the resurrection.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Ezra 1:1-6

In the first year of Cyrus, king of Persia, in order to fulfill the word of the Lord spoken by Jeremiah, the Lord inspired King Cyrus of Persia to issue this proclamation throughout his kingdom, both by word of mouth and in writing: “Thus says Cyrus, king of Persia: ‘All the kingdoms of the earth the Lord, the God of heaven, has given to me, and he has also charged me to build him a house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Therefore, whoever among you belongs to any part of his people, let him go up, and may his God be with him! Let everyone who has survived, in whatever place he may have dwelt, be assisted by the people of that place with silver, gold, goods, and cattle, together with free-will offerings for the house of God in Jerusalem.’”

Then the family heads of Judah and Benjamin and the priests and Levites—everyone, that is, whom God had inspired to do so—prepared to go up to build the house of the Lord in Jerusalem. All their neighbors gave them help in every way, with silver, gold, goods, and cattle, and with many precious gifts besides all their free-will offerings.

Psalm 126

R. The Lord has done marvels for us.
When the Lord brought back the captives of Zion,
we were like men dreaming.
Then our mouth was filled with laughter,
and our tongue with rejoicing. R.
Then they said among the nations,
“The Lord has done great things for them.”
The Lord has done great things for us;
we are glad indeed. R.
Restore our fortunes, O Lord,
like the torrents in the southern desert.
Those that sow in tears
shall reap rejoicing. R.
Although they go forth weeping,
carrying the seed to be sown,
They shall come back rejoicing,
carrying their sheaves. R.

Gospel Acclamation

Alleluia, alleluia.
Let your light shine before others,
that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father. Mt 5:16
Alleluia, alleluia.

Luke 8:16-18

Jesus said to the crowd: “No one who lights a lamp conceals it with a vessel or sets it under a bed; rather, he places it on a lampstand so that those who enter may see the light. For there is nothing hidden that will not become visible, and nothing secret that will not be known and come to light. Take care, then, how you hear. To anyone who has, more will be given, and from the one who has not, even what he seems to have will be taken away.

Prayer over the Offerings

Receive, O Lord, we pray,
the offerings placed on your altar
in commemoration of blessed Saint Pius of Pietrelcina,
so that, as you brought him glory,
you may, through these sacred mysteries,
grant to us your pardon.
Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Communion Antiphon

Blessed is the servant whom the Lord finds watching
when he comes. Amen, I say to you:
He will put that servant in charge of all his property. Cf. Mt 24:46-47
OR
This is the steward, faithful and prudent,
whom the Lord set over his household,
to give them their allowance of food at the proper time. Lk 12:42

Prayer after Communion

May partaking at the heavenly table, almighty God,
confirm and increase strength from on high
in all who celebrate the feast day of blessed Saint Pius of Pietrelcina,
that we may preserve in integrity the gift of faith
and walk in the path of salvation you trace for us.
Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

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Daily Meditation: Luke 8:16-18

To anyone who has, more will be given. (Luke 8:18)

St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina (1887–1968), whose feast day is today, is one of the Church’s best-known saints. This Italian priest is revered as a compassionate confessor and miracle worker who also bore the stigmata—the marks of Christ’s wounds. Through stories about him and his words of wisdom, Padre Pio touched millions of lives, even though he rarely left his monastery. But what was behind it all? In a word: generosity.

Padre Pio’s life is a perfect example of what Jesus is talking about in today’s Gospel. He was someone who “had” and was clearly given “more.” What he had to begin with was trust in God’s love, and he was given more because of his willingness to share that love with everyone he could. For Padre Pio, that meant spending long hours each day praying and hearing confessions. In his fifty-one years of ministry, he never took a vacation; he just kept pouring himself out for people. As for the “more,” God rewarded Pio’s generosity by pouring out even more gifts on the humble friar.

When we read about Padre Pio, however, we might think, “I could never be like him!” But that’s okay; you’re not supposed to be exactly like him. Padre Pio—and the wide assortment of the Church’s saints—teaches us that God will use anyone who responds generously to him. When we take the gifts God gives us and share them, God gives us more. The shape that “more” takes will be different for everyone. Padre Pio’s life didn’t look like St. Francis Xavier’s. And Francis Xavier’s life didn’t look like Mother Teresa’s. And her life didn’t look like the young mother of four who brings her kids to daily Mass or the retired man who spends his days teaching English to immigrants.

The key is generosity. If you’re willing to share what God has given you, he will give you more and bless more people through you. Just think of Padre Pio, who spent his life in an ordinary monastery. Even in your ordinary world, God will present you with opportunities to give to other people. And when you respond in faith, you’ll find that those opportunities keep growing.

“Jesus, you have given me so much! Whatever you ask me to do today, I’ll do!”

Ezra 1:1-6
Psalm 126:1-6

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