|St. Augustine and his mother St. Monica by Ary Scheffer (1846)|
Thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:57
Give me strength to live another day;
Let me not turn coward before its difficulties or prove recreant to its duties;
Let me not lose faith in other people;
Keep me sweet and sound of heart, in spite of ingratitude, treachery, or meanness;
Preserve me from minding little stings or giving them;
Help me to keep my heart clean, and to live so honestly and fearlessly that no outward failure can dishearten me or take away the joy of conscious integrity;
Open wide the eyes of my soul that I may see good in all things;
Grant me this day some new vision of thy truth;
Inspire me with the spirit of joy and gladness;
and make me the cup of strength to suffering souls;
in the name of the strong Deliverer, our only Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen
The Old Testament Lesson
The Old Testament Lesson for today is taken from Daniel 5:13-30
Then Daniel was brought in before the king. The king said to Daniel, "So you are Daniel, one of the exiles of Judah, whom my father the king brought from Judah? I have heard of you that a spirit of the gods is in you, and that enlightenment, understanding, and excellent wisdom are found in you. Now the wise men, the enchanters, have been brought in before me to read this writing and tell me its interpretation, but they were not able to give the interpretation of the matter. But I have heard that you can give interpretations and solve problems. Now if you are able to read the writing and tell me its interpretation, you shall be clothed in purple, have a chain of gold around your neck, and rank third in the kingdom." Then Daniel answered in the presence of the king, "Let your gifts be for yourself, or give your rewards to someone else! Nevertheless I will read the writing to the king and let him know the interpretation. O king, the Most High God gave your father Nebuchadnezzar kingship, greatness, glory, and majesty. And because of the greatness that he gave him, all peoples, nations, and languages trembled and feared before him. He killed those he wanted to kill, kept alive those he wanted to keep alive, honored those he wanted to honor, and degraded those he wanted to degrade. But when his heart was lifted up and his spirit was hardened so that he acted proudly, he was deposed from his kingly throne, and his glory was stripped from him. He was driven from human society, and his mind was made like that of an animal. His dwelling was with the wild asses, he was fed grass like oxen, and his body was bathed with the dew of heaven, until he learned that the Most High God has sovereignty over the kingdom of mortals, and sets over it whomever he will. And you, Belshazzar his son, have not humbled your heart, even though you knew all this! You have exalted yourself against the Lord of heaven! The vessels of his temple have been brought in before you, and you and your lords, your wives and your concubines have been drinking wine from them. You have praised the gods of silver and gold, of bronze, iron, wood, and stone, which do not see or hear or know; but the God in whose power is your very breath, and to whom belong all your ways, you have not honored. "So from his presence the hand was sent and this writing was inscribed. And this is the writing that was inscribed: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, and PARSIN. This is the interpretation of the matter: MENE, God has numbered the days of your kingdom and brought it to an end; TEKEL, you have been weighed on the scales and found wanting; PERES, your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians." Then Belshazzar gave the command, and Daniel was clothed in purple, a chain of gold was put around his neck, and a proclamation was made concerning him that he should rank third in the kingdom. That very night Belshazzar, the Chaldean king, was killed.
The Epistle Lesson
The Epistle Lesson for today is taken from 1 John 5:13-21
I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life. And this is the boldness we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have obtained the requests made of him. If you see your brother or sister committing what is not a mortal sin, you will ask, and God will give life to such a one-- to those whose sin is not mortal. There is sin that is mortal; I do not say that you should pray about that. All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin that is not mortal. We know that those who are born of God do not sin, but the one who was born of God protects them, and the evil one does not touch them. We know that we are God's children, and that the whole world lies under the power of the evil one. And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. Little children, keep yourselves from idols.
The Holy Gospel Lesson
The Holy Gospel is written in Luke 5:1-11
Once while Jesus was standing beside the lake of Gennesaret, and the crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God, he saw two boats there at the shore of the lake; the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little way from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat. When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, "Put out into the deep water and let down your nets for a catch." Simon answered, "Master, we have worked all night long but have caught nothing. Yet if you say so, I will let down the nets." When they had done this, they caught so many fish that their nets were beginning to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both boats, so that they began to sink. But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, "Go away from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man!" For he and all who were with him were amazed at the catch of fish that they had taken; and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. Then Jesus said to Simon, "Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching people." When they had brought their boats to shore, they left everything and followed him.
Psalm 37:1-18 Noli aemulari
1 Do not fret yourself because of evildoers; do not be jealous of those who do wrong.
2 For they shall soon wither like the grass, and like the green grass fade away.
3 Put your trust in the LORD and do good; dwell in the land and feed on its riches.
4 Take delight in the LORD, and he shall give you your heart's desire.
5 Commit your way to the LORD and put your trust in him, and he will bring it to pass.
6 He will make your righteousness as clear as the light and your just dealing as the noonday.
7 Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him.
8 Do not fret yourself over the one who prospers, the one who succeeds in evil schemes.
9 Refrain from anger, leave rage alone; do not fret yourself; it leads only to evil.
10 For evildoers shall be cut off, but those who wait upon the LORD shall possess the land.
11 In a little while the wicked shall be no more; you shall search out their place, but they will not be there.
12 But the lowly shall possess the land; they will delight in abundance of peace.
13 The wicked plot against the righteous and gnash at them with their teeth.
14 The Lord laughs at the wicked, because he sees that their day will come.
15 The wicked draw their sword and bend their bow to strike down the poor and needy, to slaughter those who are upright in their ways.
16 Their sword shall go through their own heart, and their bow shall be broken.
17 The little that the righteous has is better than great riches of the wicked.
18 For the power of the wicked shall be broken, but the LORD upholds the righteous.
Psalm 37:19-42 Novit Dominus
19 The LORD cares for the lives of the godly, and their inheritance shall last for ever.
20 They shall not be ashamed in bad times, and in days of famine they shall have enough.
21 As for the wicked, they shall perish, and the enemies of the LORD, like the glory of the meadows, shall vanish; they shall vanish like smoke.
22 The wicked borrow and do not repay, but the righteous are generous in giving.
23 Those who are blessed by God shall possess the land, but those who are cursed by him shall be destroyed.
24 Our steps are directed by the LORD; he strengthens those in whose way he delights.
25 If they stumble, they shall not fall headlong, for the LORD holds them by the hand.
26 I have been young and now I am old, but never have I seen the righteous forsaken, or their children begging bread.
27 The righteous are always generous in their lending, and their children shall be a blessing.
28 Turn from evil, and do good, and dwell in the land for ever.
29 For the LORD loves justice; he does not forsake his faithful ones.
30 They shall be kept safe for ever, but the offspring of the wicked shall be destroyed.
31 The righteous shall possess the land and dwell in it for ever.
32 The mouth of the righteous utters wisdom, and their tongue speaks what is right.
33 The law of their God is in their heart, and their footsteps shall not falter.
34 The wicked spy on the righteous and seek occasion to kill them.
35 The LORD will not abandon them to their hand, nor let them be found guilty when brought to trial.
36 Wait upon the LORD and keep his way; he will raise you up to possess the land, and when the wicked are cut off, you will see it.
37 I have seen the wicked in their arrogance, flourishing like a tree in full leaf.
38 I went by, and behold, they were not there; I searched for them, but they could not be found.
39 Mark those who are honest; observe the upright; for there is a future for the peaceable.
40 Transgressors shall be destroyed, one and all; the future of the wicked is cut off.
41 But the deliverance of the righteous comes from the LORD; he is their stronghold in time of trouble.
42 The LORD will help them and rescue them; he will rescue them from the wicked and deliver them, because they seek refuge in him.
The Apostles' Creed
I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.
I believe in Jesus Christ, his only son, our Lord. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended to the dead. On the third day he rose again. He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen
Prayer of the Day
O Lord, through spiritual discipline you strengthened your servant Monica to persevere in offering her love and prayers and tears for the conversion of her husband and of Augustine their son: Deepen our devotion, we pray, and use us in accordance with your will to bring others, even our own kindred, to acknowledge Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord; who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen
A Prayer for Guidance
Heavenly Father, in you we live and move and have our being: We humbly pray you so to guide and govern us by your Holy Spirit, that in all the cares and occupations of our life we may not forget you, but may remember that we are ever walking in your sight; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
A Prayer for Mission
O God, you have made of one blood all the peoples of the earth, and sent your blessed Son to preach peace to those who are far off and to those who are near: Grant that people everywhere may seek after you and find you; bring the nations into your fold; pour out your Spirit upon all flesh; and hasten the coming of your kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
Let us bless the Lord. Alleluia!
Thanks be to God! Alleluia!
Glory to God whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine: Glory to him from generation to generation in the Church, and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever. Amen
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The New Revised Standard Version Bible may be quoted and/or reprinted up to and inclusive of five hundred (500) verses without express written permission of the publisher, provided the verses quoted do not amount to a complete book of the Bible or account for fifty percent (50%) of the total work in which they are quoted.