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Saint Ignatius of Antioch, Bishop and Martyr (Memorial)
I am crucified with Christ, yet I live;
no longer I, but Christ lives in me.
I live by faith in the Son of God,
who has loved me and given himself up for me. Cf. Gal 2:19-20
Almighty ever-living God,
who adorn the sacred body of your Church
with the confessions of holy Martyrs,
grant, we pray,
that, just as the glorious passion of Saint Ignatius of Antioch,
which we celebrate today,
brought him eternal splendor,
so it may be for us unending protection.
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.
Brothers and sisters: Hearing of your faith in the Lord Jesus and of your love for all the holy ones, I do not cease giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation resulting in knowledge of him. May the eyes of your hearts be enlightened, that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call, what are the riches of glory in his inheritance among the holy ones, and what is the surpassing greatness of his power for us who believe, in accord with the exercise of his great might, which he worked in Christ, raising him from the dead and seating him at his right hand in the heavens, far above every principality, authority, power, and dominion, and every name that is named not only in this age but also in the one to come. And he put all things beneath his feet and gave him as head over all things to the Church, which is his Body, the fullness of the one who fills all things in every way.
R. You have given your Son rule over the works of your hands.
O Lord, our Lord,
how glorious is your name over all the earth!
You have exalted your majesty above the heavens.
Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings
you have fashioned praise because of your foes. R.
When I behold your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars which you set in place—
What is man that you should be mindful of him,
or the son of man that you should care for him? R.
You have made him little less than the angels,
and crowned him with glory and honor.
You have given him rule over the works of your hands,
putting all things under his feet. R.
The Spirit of truth will testify to me, says the Lord,
and you also will testify. Jn 15:26b, 27a
Jesus said to his disciples: “I tell you, everyone who acknowledges me before others the Son of Man will acknowledge before the angels of God. But whoever denies me before others will be denied before the angels of God.
“Everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but the one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. When they take you before synagogues and before rulers and authorities, do not worry about how or what your defense will be or about what you are to say. For the Holy Spirit will teach you at that moment what you should say.”
Prayer over the Offerings
May this oblation and our homage be pleasing to you, O Lord,
just as you accepted Saint Ignatius, the wheat of Christ,
made pure bread through his martyrdom and passion.
Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
I am the wheat of Christ to be ground by the teeth of beasts,
that I may be found to be pure bread.
Prayer after Communion
May the heavenly Bread we have received, O Lord,
on the feast day of Saint Ignatius
renew us, we pray,
and make us Christians in name and in deed.
Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Daily Meditation: Luke 12:8-12
The one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. (Luke 12:10)
Wait! Doesn’t God forgive all sins? Isn’t his mercy inexhaustible? Yes, he does, and yes, it is. So what is Jesus really saying?
Pope St. John Paul II put it this way: blasphemy does not mean “offending against the Holy Spirit in words,” but rather “in the refusal to accept the salvation which God offers . . . through the Holy Spirit” (Dominum et Vivificantem, 46). It’s not that there’s literally an “unforgivable sin” that we can commit. God will forgive any sin we bring to him. But if we don’t ask for and receive his forgiveness, it becomes “unforgivable.” It’s like being in a room that you’ve locked from the inside, and you won’t let the Lord in. You’re trapped, but you’re the one who has trapped yourself.
Now, we all know what it’s like to struggle to repent of sin. We may carry so much shame and guilt that we’re reluctant to bring it all to the Lord. Perhaps we think that what we’ve done is just too serious to be forgiven. Or we may not even recognize that what we’re doing is an offense against God, so we don’t bother to ask his forgiveness. That’s where the Holy Spirit comes in. He stirs our conscience, showing us where we have sinned. Then he urges us to seek the Lord in prayer and in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. When we ignore these promptings, we push away the salvation that God is offering. Conversely, when we do follow them, our relationship with God grows stronger. We experience his mercy and compassion firsthand, and we realize that though we are sinners, we are redeemed and loved.
Never doubt God’s desire to forgive you! Never hesitate to bring to him whatever sin is burdening you. Believe that God wants nothing more than to hear the priest say to you, “I absolve you of your sins, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”
“Holy Spirit, help me to recognize my sins, and give me the courage to seek your forgiveness.”
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