Ribbon Placement:
Liturgy of the Hours Vol. IV:
Ordinary: 615
Psalter: Thursday, Week II, 880
Common of Holy Men: 1872 (verse before first reading)
Proper of Seasons: 329 (first reading)
Proper of Saints: 1465 (second reading, responsory, concluding prayer)

Office of Readings for Thursday in Ordinary Time, the Memorial of Saint Francis of Assisi

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. Alleluia.

HYMN

1 Blest are the pure in heart,
for they shall see our God;
the secret of the Lord is theirs,
their soul is Christ’s abode.

2 The Lord, who left the heavens
our life and peace to bring,
to dwell in lowliness with us,
our pattern and our King;

3 He to the lowly soul
will still himself impart and
for his dwelling and his throne
will choose the pure in heart.

4 Lord, we thy presence seek;
may ours this blessing be;
give us a pure and lowly heart,
a temple fit for thee.

𝄞 “Blest are the Pure in Heart” by Eva Zlatkovic Ristic • Musical Score • Title: The Christian Life; Words: Sts. 1 and 3, John Keble (1792-1866), alt.; sts. 2 and 4, William John Hall (1793-1861), alt.; Music: Franconia, melody Johann Makhasar Konig (1691-1758); Adapt. and harmony: William Henry Havergal (1793-1870); Artist: Eva Zlatkovic Ristic; Copyright 2016 Surgeworks • Albums that contain this Hymn: Divine Office

PSALMODY

Ant. 1 Lord, you are our savior; we will praise you for ever.

Psalm 44
The misfortunes of God’s people

We triumph over all these things through him who loved us (Romans 8:37).

I

We heard with our own ears, O God,
our fathers have told us the story
of the things you did in their days,
you yourself, in days long ago.

To plant them you uprooted the nations;
to let them spread you laid peoples low.
No sword of their own won the land;
no arm of their own brought them victory.
It was your right hand, your arm
and the light of your face; for you loved them.

It is you, my king, my God,
who granted victories to Jacob.
Through you we beat down our foes;
in your name we trampled down our aggressors.

For it was not in my bow that I trusted
nor yet was I saved by my sword:
it was you who saved us from our foes,
it was you who put our foes to shame.
All day long our boast was in God
and we praised your name without ceasing.

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. Lord, you are our savior; we will praise you for ever.

Ant. 2 Spare us, O Lord; do not bring your own people into contempt.

II

Yet now you have rejected us, disgraced us;
you no longer go forth with our armies.
You make us retreat from the foe
and our enemies plunder us at will.

You make us like sheep for the slaughter
and scatter us among the nations.
You sell your own people for nothing
and make no profit by the sale.

You make us the taunt of our neighbors,
the laughing stock of all who are near.
Among the nations, you make us a byword,
among the peoples a thing of derision.

All day long my disgrace is before me;
my face is covered with shame
at the voice of the taunter, the scoffer,
at the sight of the foe and avenger.

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. Spare us, O Lord; do not bring your own people into contempt.

Ant. 3 Rise up, O Lord, and save us, for you are merciful.

III

This befell us though we had not forgotten you,
though we had not been false to your covenant,
though we had not withdrawn our hearts;
though our feet had not strayed from your path.
Yet you have crushed us in a place of sorrows
and covered us with the shadow of death.

Had we forgotten the name of our God,
or stretched out our hands to another god
would not God have found this out,
he who knows the secrets of the heart?
It is for you that we face death all day long
and are counted as sheep for the slaughter.

Awake, O Lord, why do you sleep?
Arise, do not reject us for ever!
Why do you hide your face from us
and forget our oppression and misery?

For we are brought down low to the dust;
our body lies prostrate on the earth.
Stand up and come to our help!
Redeem us because of your love!

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, rise up and come to our aid; with your strong arm lead us to freedom, as you mightily delivered our forefathers. Since you are the king who knows the secrets of our hearts, fill them with the light of truth.

Ant. Rise up, O Lord, and save us, for you are merciful.

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.

The Lord led this holy man along a sure path.
He showed him the kingdom of God.

READINGS

First Reading
From the letter of the apostle Paul to the Philippians
3:1-16
The example of Paul

My brothers, rejoice in the Lord. I find writing you these things no burden, and for you it is a safeguard.

Beware of unbelieving dogs. Watch out for workers of evil. Be on guard against those who mutilate. It is we who are the circumcision, who worship in the spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus rather than putting our trust in the flesh—though I can be confident even there.

If anyone thinks he has a right to put his trust in external evidence, all the more can I! I was circumcised on the eighth day, being of the stock of Israel and the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrew origins; in legal observance I was a Pharisee, and so zealous that I persecuted the church. I was above reproach when it came to justice based on the law.

But those things I used to consider gain I have now reappraised as loss in the light of Christ. I have come to rate all as loss in the light of the surpassing knowledge of my Lord Jesus Christ. For his sake I have forfeited everything; I have accounted all else rubbish so that Christ may be my wealth and I may be in him, not having any justice of my own based on observance of the law. The justice I possess is that which comes through faith in Christ. It has its origin in God and is based on faith. I wish to know Christ and the power flowing from his resurrection; likewise to know how to share in his sufferings by being formed into the pattern of his death. Thus do I hope that I may arrive at resurrection from the dead.

It is not that I have reached it yet, or have already finished my course; but I am racing to grasp the prize if possible, since I have been grasped by Christ [Jesus]. Brothers, I do not think of myself as having reached the finish line. I give no thought to what lies behind but push on to what is ahead. My entire attention is on the finish line as I run toward the prize to which God calls me—life on high in Christ Jesus.

All of us who are spiritually mature must have this attitude. If you see it another way, God will clarify the difficulty for you. It is important that we continue on our course, no matter what stage we have reached.

RESPONSORY Philippians 3:8, 10; Romans 6:8

I have counted all things worthless so that I might gain Christ.
I wish to know Christ and the power of his resurrection, and to be one with him in his sufferings.

We believe that if we die with Christ, we shall also live with him.
I wish to know Christ and the power of his resurrection, and to be one with him in his sufferings.

Second reading
From a letter written to all the faithful by Saint Francis of Assisi
We must be simple, humble and pure

It was through his archangel, Saint Gabriel, that the Father above made known to the holy and glorious Virgin Mary that the worthy, holy and glorious Word of the Father would come from heaven and take from her womb the real flesh of our human frailty. Though he was wealthy beyond reckoning, he still willingly chose to be poor with his blessed mother. And shortly before his passion he celebrated the Passover with his disciples. Then he prayed to his Father saying: Father, if it be possible, let this cup be taken from me.

Nevertheless, he reposed his will in the will of his Father. The Father willed that his blessed and glorious Son, whom he gave to us and who was born for us, should through his own blood offer himself as a sacrificial victim on the altar of the cross. This was to be done not for himself through whom all things were made, but for our sins. It was intended to leave us an example of how to follow in his footsteps. And he desires all of us to be saved through him, and to receive him with pure heart and chaste body.

O how happy and blessed are those who love the Lord and do as the Lord himself said in the gospel: You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart and your whole soul, and your neighbor as yourself. Therefore, let us love God and adore him with pure heart and mind. This is his particular desire when he says: True worshipers adore the Father in spirit and truth. For all who adore him must do so in the spirit of truth. Let us also direct to him our praises and prayers saying: Our Father, who art in heaven, since we must always pray and never grow slack.

Furthermore, let us produce worthy fruits of penance. Let us also love our neighbors as ourselves. Let us have charity and humility. Let us give alms because these cleanse our souls from the stains of sin. Men lose all the material things they leave behind them in this world, but they carry with them the reward of their charity and the alms they give. For these they will receive from the Lord the reward and recompense they deserve. We must not be wise and prudent according to the flesh. Rather we must be simple, humble and pure. We should never desire to be over others. Instead, we ought to be servants who are submissive to every human being for God’s sake. The Spirit of the Lord will rest on all who live in this way and persevere in it to the end. He will permanently dwell in them. They will be the Father’s children who do his work. They are the spouses, brothers and mothers of our Lord Jesus Christ.

RESPONSORY Matthew 5:3-4, 6

Blessed are you who are poor,
for the kingdom of God is yours.
Blessed are those of gentle spirit;
they shall inherit the land.

Blessed are you who hunger now;
you shall be satisfied.
Blessed are those of gentle spirit;
they shall inherit the land.

CONCLUDING PRAYER

O God,
by whose gift Saint Francis
was conformed to Christ in poverty and humility,
grant that, by walking in Francis’ footsteps,
we may follow your Son, and, through joyful charity,
come to be united with you.
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 © 2006-2018 Surgeworks, Inc. All rights reserved.