Ribbon Placement:
Liturgy of the Hours Vol. II:
Ordinary: 1045
Proper of Seasons: 373
Psalter: Thursday, Week I, 1158

Office of Readings for Thursday of the 5th week of Lent

God, come to my assistance.
Lord, make haste to help me.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

HYMN

God of mercy God of grace
Hear our sad, repentant songs.
O restore Thy suppliant race,
Thou to whom our praise belongs!

Deep regret for follies past,
Talents wasted, time misspent;
Hearts debased by worldly cares,
Thankless for the blessings lent:

Foolish fears and fond desires,
Vain regrets for things as vain:
Lips too seldom taught to praise,
Oft to murmur and complain;

These, and every secret fault,
Filled with grief and shame, we own.
Humbled at Thy feet we lie,
Seeking pardon from Thy throne.

𝄞 “God of Mercy God of Grace” by Rebecca Hincke • Title: God of Mercy God of Grace; Text: John Taylor; Artist: Rebecca Hincke; (c) 2017 Surgeworks, Inc.

PSALMODY

Ant. 1 The word of the Lord is a strong shield for all who put their trust in him.

Psalm 18:31-51
Hymn of thanksgiving

If God is on our side who can be against us? (Romans 8:31).

IV

As for God, his ways are perfect;
the word of the Lord, purest gold.
He indeed is the shield
of all who make him their refuge.

For who is God but the Lord?
Who is a rock but our God?
The God who girds me with strength
and makes the path safe before me.

My feet you made swift as the deer’s;
you have made me stand firm on the heights.
You have trained my hands for battle
and my arms to bend the heavy bow.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. The word of the Lord is a strong shield for all who put their trust in him.

Ant. 2 Your strong right hand has upheld me, Lord.

V

You gave me your saving shield;
you upheld me, trained me with care.
You gave me freedom for my steps;
my feet have never slipped.

I pursued and overtook my foes,
never turning back till they were slain.
I smote them so they could not rise;
they fell beneath my feet.

You girded me with strength for battle;
you made my enemies fall beneath me,
you made my foes take flight;
those who hated me I destroyed.

They cried, but there was no one to save them;
they cried to the Lord, but in vain.
I crushed them fine as dust before the wind;
trod them down like dirt in the streets.

You saved me from the feuds of the people
and put me at the head of the nations.
People unknown to me served me:
when they heard of me they obeyed me.

Foreign nations came to me cringing:
foreign nations faded away.
They came trembling out of their strongholds.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Your strong right hand has upheld me, Lord.

Ant. 3 May the living God, my Savior, be praised for ever.

VI

Long life to the Lord, my rock!
Praised be the God who saves me,
the God who gives me redress
and subdues people under me.

You saved me from my furious foes.
You set me above my assailants.
You saved me from violent men,
so I will praise you, Lord, among the nations:
I will sing a psalm to your name.

He has given great victories to his king
and shown his love for his anointed,
for David and his sons for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm-prayer

Lord God, our strength and salvation, put in us the flame of your love and make our love for you grow to a perfect love which reaches to our neighbor.

Ant. May the living God, my Savior, be praised for ever.

Sacred Silence (indicated by a bell) – a moment to reflect and receive in our hearts the full resonance of the voice of the Holy Spirit and to unite our personal prayer more closely with the word of God and public voice of the Church.

Whoever meditates on the law of the Lord.
Will bring forth much fruit at harvest time.

READINGS

First reading
From the letter to the Hebrews
7:1-10
Melchizedek is a type of the perfect priest

Melchizedek, king of Salem and priest of the Most High God, met Abraham returning from his defeat of the kings and blessed him. And Abraham apportioned to him one tenth of all his booty. His name means “king of justice”; he was also king of Salem, that is, “king of peace.” Without father, mother or ancestry, without beginning of days or end of life, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever.

See the greatness of this man to whom Abraham the patriarch gave one tenth of his booty! The law provides that the priests of the tribe of Levi should receive tithes from the people, their brother Israelites, even though all of them are descendants of Abraham; but Melchizedek, who was not of their ancestry, received tithes of Abraham and blessed him who had received God’s promises. It is indisputable that a lesser person is blessed by a greater.

And whereas men subject to death receive tithes, Scripture testifies that this man lives on. Levi, who receives tithes, was, so to speak, tithed in the person of his father, for he was still in his father’s loins when Melchizedek met Abraham.

RESPONSORY See Genesis 14:18; Hebrews 7:3; see Psalm 110:5; Hebrews 7:16

Melchizedek, the king of Salem, offered bread and wine. He was priest of God Most High like Christ the Son of God,
to whom the Lord has sworn the oath: You are a priest for ever, a priest like Melchizedek of old.

He became a priest, not in virtue of a law concerning physical descent, but by the power of an indestructible life.
To whom the Lord has sworn the oath: You are a priest for ever, a priest like Melchizedek of old.

Second reading
From the dogmatic constitution on the Church of the Second Vatican Council
The Church as sacrament of unity and salvation

See, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah… I will plant my law within them and inscribe it in their hearts. I will be their God and they shall be my people… All shall know me, from the least to the greatest, says the Lord.

It was Christ who established this new covenant, the new testament in his blood, calling into being, from Jews and Gentiles, a people that was to form a unity, not in human fashion but in the Spirit, as the new people of God. Those who believe in Christ, reborn not of corruptible but of incorruptible seed through the word of the living God, not from the flesh but from water and the Holy Spirit, are constituted in the fullness of time as a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people God has made his own…, once no people but now the people of God.

This messianic people has Christ as its head: Christ who was given up for our sins and rose again for our justification; bearing now the name that is above every name, he reigns in glory in heaven. His people enjoy the dignity and freedom of the children of God, in whose hearts the Holy Spirit dwells as in a temple. They have as their law the new commandment of loving as Christ himself has loved us. They have as their goal the kingdom of God, begun on earth by God himself and destined to grow until it is also brought to perfection by him at the end of time, when Christ, our life, will appear, and creation itself will be freed from slavery to corruption and take on the freedom of the glory of God’s children.

This messianic people, then, though it does not in fact embrace all mankind and often seems to be a tiny flock, is yet the enduring source of unity, hope and salvation for the whole human race. It is established by Christ as a communion of life, of love and of truth; it is also used by him as an instrument for the redemption of all, and is sent out into the whole world as the light of the world and the salt of the earth.

The Israel of old was already called the Church of God while it was on pilgrimage through the desert. So the new Israel, as it makes its way in this present age, seeking a city that is to come, a city that will remain, is also known as the Church of Christ, for he acquired it by his own blood, filled it with his Spirit, and equipped it with appropriate means to be a visible and social unity. God has called together the assembly of those who in faith look on Jesus, the author of salvation and the principle of unity and peace, and so has established the Church to be for each and all the visible sacrament of this unity which brings with it salvation.

RESPONSORY 1 Peter 2:9-10; Psalm 33:12

You are a people set apart. Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God.
Once you had no experience of God’s mercy, but now it has been granted you.

Happy the people whose God is the Lord, the people he has chosen as his own.
Once you had no experience of God’s mercy, but now it has been granted you.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

Be near,
O Lord, to those who plead before you,
and look kindly on those who place their hope in your mercy,
that, cleansed from the stain of their sins,
they may persevere in holy living
and be made full heirs of your promise.
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.

ACCLAMATION (only added when praying in community)

Let us praise the Lord.
And give him thanks.

The English translation of The Liturgy of the Hours (Four Volumes) ©1974, International Commission on English in the Liturgy Corporation. All rights reserved. Used with permission by Surgeworks, Inc for the Divine Office Catholic Ministry. DivineOffice.org website, podcast, apps and all related media is © 2006-2020 Surgeworks, Inc. All rights reserved.