Why are you standing here
looking into the sky? Jesus has been taken into heaven.
Ps 46:2-3.6-9. R. v. 6
R. God mounts his throne to shouts
of joy: a blare of trumpets for the Lord.
He made Jesus to sit at his
right hand in heaven.
Go and teach all people my gospel.
I am with you always, until the end of the world.
The Lord Jesus was taken
into heaven and is seated at the right hand of God.
Images from the Word:
- Whole world
- His place
- Taken up to heaven
- Unity of the Spirit
diocese of Australia standing is the most common posture for receiving Holy
Communion, though individual members of the faithful may choose to receive
Communion while kneeling. When approaching to receive Holy Communion, the
faithful bow in reverence of the Sacrament that they are to receive. (General Instruction of the Roman Missal §160)
As we unite in the procession to receive the
Sacrament of Christ’s Body and Blood in Communion we express our unity by
forming one procession to the Altar to receive these Gifts. Our bodily posture
expresses our reverence towards this Gift. Our ‘Amen’ to the acclamations, ‘The
body of Christ’, ‘The Blood of Christ’, made
by the Communion minister is our opportunity to affirm our faith and our
commitment to mission. Our Christ entrusts himself to us so that we may be his
ambassadors for his mission to reach the ends of the world.
“Men of Galilee, why gaze in wonder at the heavens? This Jesus whom you
saw ascending into heaven will return as you saw him go, alleluia. (Entrance
They were all
filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak different languages.
103:1. 24. 29-31. 34. R. v.30
R. Lord, send
out your Spirit and renew the face of the earth.
Corinthians 12:3-7, 12-13
In the one
Spirit we were all baptised, making one body.
libitum for Year B
The fruit of
Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful
kindle in them the fire of your love.
As the Father
sent me, so I send you: Receive the Holy Spirit.
libitum for Year B
The Spirit of
truth will guide you into all the truth.
from the Word:
- My witness
- Complete truth
- What is mine
- Marvels of God
- Led by the Spirit
priests are not present and there is a truly large number of communicants, the
priest may call upon extraordinary ministers to assist him, that is, duly
instituted acolytes or even other faithful who have been duly deputed for this
purpose. In case of necessity, the priest may depute suitable faithful for this
single occasion. (General Instruction
of the Roman Missal §162)
liturgical reform of Vatican II was directly focussed on restoring to the
priestly people of God their baptismal right and duty to fully participate in
the Liturgy, not as spectators but as engaged members. To ensure that this is
possible the Church made changes to its practices. Our ordained ministers are
the ordinary ministers for distributing Communion. When they are not available,
the local bishop may provide for extraordinary ministers to be taken from the
faithful to help with distribution of Communion in the Body and Blood of
Christ. This permission ensures that the celebration is not unnecessarily
Spirit of the Lord has filled the whole world and that which contains all
things understands what is said, alleluia. (Entrance Antiphon)
Deuteronomy 4:32-34.39-40The Lord himself is God, in heaven above and on earth below: there is no other.
Ps 32:4-6.9.18-20.22 R. v. 12R. Happy the people the Lord has chosen to be his own.
Romans 8:14-17You have received the Spirit that makes you God’s own children, and in that Spirit we call God: Father, our Father!
Cf. Apoc 1:8Alleluia, alleluia!
Glory to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit:
To God who is, who was, and who is to come.
Matthew 28:16-20Baptise them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
The eleven disciples set out for Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had arranged to meet them. When they saw him they fell down before him, though some hesitated. Jesus came up and spoke to them. He said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go, therefore, make disciples of all the nations; baptise them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teach them to observe all the commands I gave you. And know that I am with you always; yes, to the end of time.’Images from the Word
- Meet them
- I am with you
- Word so majestic
- United witness
‘In texts that are to be pronounced in a loud and clear voice, whether by the Priest or the Deacon, or by a reader, or by everyone, the voice should correspond to the genre of the text itself, that is, depending upon whether it is a reading, a prayer, an explanatory comment, an acclamation, or a sung text; it should also be suited to the form of celebration and to the solemnity of the gathering. Consideration should also be given to the characteristics of different languages and of the culture of different peoples.’ (General Instruction of the Roman Missal §38)
To be able to maintain this standard expected for every reader it is important that they prepare their text well in advance. By their careful and prayerful preparation, they offer great service to their community.
‘Blest be God the Father, and the Only Begotten Son of God, and also the Holy Spirit, for he has shown us his merciful love.’
Exodus 24:3-8This is the blood of the Covenant that the Lord has made with you.
Ps 115:12-13.15-18. R. v. 13R. I will take the cup of salvation, and call on the name of the Lord.
or R. AlleluiaSecond Reading
Hebrews 9:11-15The blood of Christ will purify our inner selves
Jn 6:51-52Alleluia, alleluia!
I am the living bread from heaven, says the Lord;
Whoever eats this bread will live for ever.
Mark 14:12-16.22-26This is my body. This is my blood.
On the first day of Unleavened Bread, when the Passover lamb was sacrificed, his disciples said to Jesus, ‘Where do you want us to go and make the preparations for you to eat the passover?’ So he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, ‘Go into the city and you will meet a man carrying a pitcher of water. Follow him, and say to the owner of the house which he enters, “The Master says: Where is my dining room in which I can eat the passover with my disciples?” He will show you a large upper room furnished with couches, all prepared. Make the preparations for us there.’ The disciples set out and went to the city and found everything as he had told them, and prepared the Passover.
And as they were eating he took some bread, and when he had said the blessing he broke it and gave it to them. ‘Take it,’ he said ‘this is my body.’ Then he took a cup, and when he had returned thanks he gave it to them, and all drank from it, and he said to them, ‘This is my blood, the blood of the covenant, which is to be poured out for many. I tell you solemnly, I shall not drink any more wine until the day I drink the new wine in the kingdom of God.’
After psalms had been sung they left for the Mount of Olives.
Images from the Word
- Large upper room
- Mount of Olives
- We will observe
- Eternal inheritance
Liturgical Notes‘While the Priest is receiving the Sacrament, the Communion Chant is begun, its purpose being to express the spiritual union of the communicants by means of the unity of their voices, to show gladness of heart, and to bring out more clearly the “communitarian” character of the procession to receive the Eucharist. The singing is prolonged for as long as the Sacrament is being administered to the faithful.’
(General Instruction of the Roman Missal §86)
In selecting appropriate music for the Communion Chant our musicians have to cover many bases: the words of the singing must express the spiritual union of the communicants, rather than our devotional words which are more appropriate for Benediction; they also have to invite all participants to join with a united voice so that the truth of the moment is expressed—that we are one Body; finally, the music has to engage the community for as long as it takes for all to receive Communion. ‘He fed them with the finest wheat and satisfied them with honey from the rock.’
THE WORDFirst Reading
Genesis 3:9-15I will make you enemies of each other: your offspring and her offspring.
Ps 129 R v.7R. With the Lord there is mercy and fullness of redemption.
Corinthians 4:13-5:1We believe, and therefore we speak.
John 12:31.32Alleluia, alleluia!
The prince of this world will now be cast out,
and when I am lifted up from the earth.
I will draw all to myself, says the Lord
Mark 3:20-35It is the end of Satan.
Jesus went home with his disciples, and such a crowd collected that they could not even have a meal. When his relatives heard of this, they set out to take charge of him, convinced he was out of his mind.
The scribes who had come down from Jerusalem were saying, ‘Beelzebul is in him,’ and, “It is through the prince of devils that he casts devils out.’ So he called them to him and spoke to them in parables, ‘How can Satan cast out Satan? If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot last. And if a household is divided against itself, that household can never stand. Now if Satan has rebelled against himself and is divided, he cannot stand either – it is the end of him. But no one can make his way into a strong man’s house and burgle his property unless he has tied up the strong man first. Only then can he burgle his house.
‘I tell you solemnly, all men’s sins will be forgiven, and all their blasphemies; but let anyone blaspheme against the Holy Spirit and he will never have forgiveness: he is guilty of an eternal sin.” This was because they were saying, “An unclean spirit is in him.”
His mother and brothers now arrived and, standing outside, sent in a message asking for him. A crowd was sitting round him at the time the message was passed to him, ‘Your mother and brothers and sisters are outside asking for you.’ He replied, ‘Who are my mother and my brothers? And looking round at those sitting in a circle about him, he said, “Here are my mother and my brothers. Anyone who does the will of God, that person is my brother and sister and mother.’Images from the Word
Liturgical notes‘The Priest breaks the Eucharistic Bread, with the assistance, if the case requires, of the Deacon or a concelebrant. The gesture of breaking bread done by Christ at the Last Supper, which in apostolic times gave the entire Eucharistic Action its name, signifies that the many faithful are made one body (1 Cor 10: 17) by receiving Communion from the one Bread of Life, which is Christ, who for the salvation of the world died and rose again.’
- Went home
- Kingdom divided
- Eternal sin
- I was afraid
- House built by God
(General Instruction of the Roman Missal §83)
This rite of the breaking of bread can often get lost and not be seen by the People of God. The Presider needs to ensure that he does it in a visible and deliberate manner as the singing of the Lamb of God begins. He needs to do it in such a way that the unity of the one Loaf is clearly recognised and then by its breaking the assembly may recognise the invitation to live that unity in their relationships. ‘The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life, whom should I dread? When those who do evil draw near, they stumble and fall.’
Ezekiel 17:22-24I have made the small tree great.
Ps 91:2-3. 13-16 R v 2R. Lord, it is good to give thanks to you.
Corinthians 5:6-10Whether we are living in the body or exiled from it,
we are intent on pleasing the Lord.
The seed is the word of God, Christ is the sower;
all who come to him will live for ever.
Mark 4:26-34The mustard seed, the smallest of all the seeds, grows into the biggest shrub of all.
Jesus said to the crowds; “This is what the kingdom of God is like. A man throws seed on the land. Night and day, while he sleeps, when he is awake, the seed is sprouting and growing; how, he does not know. Of its own accord the land produces first the shoot, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. And when the crop is ready, he loses no time: he starts to reap because the harvest has come.’
He also said, ‘what can we say the kingdom of God is like? What parable can we find for it? It is like a mustard seed which at the time of its sowing in the soil is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet once it is sown it grows into the biggest shrub of them all and puts out big branches so that the birds of the air can shelter in its shade.”
Using many parables like these, he spoke the word to them, so far as they were capable of understanding it. He would not speak to them except in parables, but he explained everything to his disciples when they were alone.Images from the Word
- Kingdom of God
- Sprouting and growing
- In parables
- Noble cedar
- Going by faith
‘When the Sacred Scriptures are read in the Church, God himself speaks to his people, and Christ, present in his word, proclaims the Gospel. Therefore, the readings from the Word of God are to be listened to reverently by everyone, for they are an element of the greatest importance in the Liturgy.’
(General Instruction of the Roman Missal §29)
Week after week the holy people of God are fed by the Word of God. God speaks when the Scriptures are proclaimed at Mass and the people of God, attentive to their God, bring life to that Word during the week as they engage in daily life, having been formed to see life from God’s point of view. The Homily unlocks for the people a deeper understanding of that Word and connects it to their life. The homilist provides a living commentary so that God’s Word may be alive and active. ‘O Lord, hear my voice, for I have called to you; be my help. Do not abandon or forsake me, O God, my Saviour!’
Isaiah 49:1-6 Behold I will make you a light to the nations.
Ps 138:1-3. 13-15. R. v.14 R. I praise you for I am wonderfully made.
Acts 13:22-26 Christ's coming was announced beforehand by the preaching of John.
Luke 1:76 Alleluia, alleluia!
You, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High;
you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways.
Luke 1:57-66. 80 John is his name.
The time came for Elizabeth to have her child, and she gave birth to a son; and when her neighbours and relations heard that the Lord had shown her so great a kindness, they shared her joy.
Now on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child; they were going to call him Zechariah after his father, but his mother spoke up. ‘No,’ she said ‘he is to be called John.’ They said to her, ‘But no one in your family has that name’, and made signs to his father to find out what he wanted him called. The father asked for a writing tablet and wrote, ‘His name is John.’ And they were all astonished. At that instant his power of speech returned and he spoke and praised God. All their neighbours were filled with awe and the whole affair was talked about throughout the hill country of Judaea. All those who heard of it treasured it in their hearts. ‘What will this child turn out to be?’ they wondered. And indeed the hand of the Lord was with him. The child grew up and his spirit matured. And he lived out in the wilderness until the day he appeared openly to Israel. Images from the Word
Liturgical Notes‘The Church’s practice has been to celebrate the saints on the date of their death (“birthday”), a practice it would be well to follow when entering proper celebrations in particular calendars.’
- Gave birth
- So great a kindness
- His spirit matured
- Light of the nations
- One is coming
(General Norms for the Liturgical Year and the Calendar §56)
This year, our usual Sunday cycle of prayers and readings is replace by those assigned for the birthday of St John the Baptist. Usually the Church will celebrate a saint on the day of their death to acknowledge their birth into eternal life; in fact, the calendar will do this for St John on 29 August. However, today the Church marks the day of his birth just as it will celebrate the day of Jesus’ birth. ‘He will be great in the sight of the Lord and will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother’s womb; and many will rejoice at his birth.’
THE WORDFirst Reading
Wisdom 1:13-15:2:23-24It was the devil’s envy that brought death into the worldResponsorial Psalm
Ps 29: 2.4-6.11-13. R. v. 2R. I will praise you, Lord, for you have rescued me.Second Reading
Corinthians 8:7.9.13-15Your abundance should supply their want.Gospel Acclamation
2 Tim 1:10bAlleluia, alleluia!
Our Saviour Jesus Christ has done away with death
and brought us life through his gospel.
Mark 5:21-43Young girl, I say to you, arise
When Jesus had crossed in the boat to the other side, a large crowd gathered round him and he stayed by the lakeside. Then one of the synagogue officials came up, Jairus by name, and seeing him, fell at his feet and pleaded with him earnestly, saying, ‘My little daughter is desperately sick. Do come and lay your hands on her to make her better and save her life.’ Jesus went with him and a large crowd followed him; they were pressing all round him.
Some people arrived from the house of the synagogue official to say, ‘Your daughter is dead: why put the Master to any further trouble?’ But Jesus had overheard this remark of theirs and he said to the official, ‘Do not be afraid; only have faith.’ And he allowed no one to go with him except Peter and James and John the brother of James. So they came to the official’s house and Jesus noticed all the commotion, with people weeping and wailing unrestrainedly. He went in and said to them, ‘Why all this commotion and crying? The child is not dead, but asleep.’ But they laughed at him. So he turned them all out and, taking with him the child’s father and mother and his own companions, he went into the place where the child lay. And taking the child by the hand he said to her, ‘Talitha, kum!’ which means, ‘little girl, I tell you to get up.’ The little girl got up at once and began to walk about, for she was twelve years old. At this they were overcome with astonishment, and he ordered them strictly not to let anyone know about it, and told them to give her something to eat.Images from the Word
- Save her life
- Who touched
- Have faith
- To be
- Your surplus
‘For the celebration of the Eucharist, the People of God are normally gathered together in a church or, if there is no church or if it is too small, then in another respectable place that is nonetheless worthy of so great a mystery. Therefore, churches or other places should be suitable for carrying out the sacred action and for ensuring the active participation of the faithful. Moreover, sacred buildings and requisites for divine worship should be truly worthy and beautiful and be signs and symbols of heavenly realities.’ (General Instruction of the Roman Missal §288)
The space for our eucharistic gathering is designed with a special purpose in mind: the space must be suitable for the sacred action and allow the active participation of the assembly. It is not an auditorium or a sports arena. It must also employ the talents of our artists so that we can proclaim the glory of heaven. ‘All peoples, clap your hands. Cry to God with shouts of joy!’
THE WORDFirst Reading
Ezekiel 2:2-5The people are rebellious; they shall know there will be a prophet in their midst.
Ps 122. R. v. 2R. Our eyes are fixed on the Lord, pleading for his mercy.
Corinthians 12:7-10I will glory in my infirmities so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.
Lk 4:18Alleluia, alleluia!
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me;
He sent me to bring Good News to the poor.
Mark 6:1-6A prophet is despised only in his own country.
Jesus went to his home town and his disciples accompanied him. With the coming of the sabbath he began teaching in the synagogue and most of them were astonished when they heard him. They said, ‘Where did the man get all this? What is this wisdom that has been granted him, and these miracles that are worked through him? This is the carpenter, surely, the son of Mary, the brother of James and Joset and Jude and Simon? His sisters, too, are they not here with us?’ And they would not accept him. And Jesus said to them, ‘A prophet is only despised in his own country among his own relations and in his own house’; and he could work no miracle there, though he cured a few sick people by laying his hands on them. He was amazed at their lack of faith.Images from the Word
- Home town
- Son of Mary
- Lack of faith
- Set of rebels
- My weaknesses
‘The function of proclaiming the readings is by tradition not presidential but ministerial. Therefore the readings are to be read by a reader, but the Gospel by the Deacon or, in his absence, by another Priest. If, however, a Deacon or another Priest is not present, the Priest Celebrant himself should read the Gospel.’ (General Instruction of the Roman Missal §59)
The Church does not expect the ministers of the Word just to read the text—they are called to proclaim the text. The assembly’s role during this proclamation is to listen to the proclamation—even the presider shares this role with the assembly as he is not expected to proclaim. Nowadays, many in the assembly actually read the text; this certainly is not expected—we are all called to listen with the ear of our heart so that we may be touched by God’s Word. We should read the text before the celebration as our way of preparing for Mass. We can then come ready to listen. ‘Your merciful love, O God, we have received in the midst of your temple. Your praise, O God, like your name, reaches the ends of the earth; your right hand is filled with saving justice.’
Amos 7:12-15Go, prophesy to my people.
Ps 84:9-14. R. v. 8R. Lord, show us your mercy and love, and grant us your salvation.
Ephesians 1:3-14Before the world was made, he chose us in Christ
cf. Eph. 1:17-18Alleluia, alleluia!
May the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ
enlighten the eyes of our heart
that we might see how great is the hope
to which we are called.
Mark 6:7-13He called the Twelve, and began to send them out.
Jesus summoned the Twelve and began to send them out in pairs giving them authority over the unclean spirits. And he instructed them to take nothing for the journey except a staff – no bread, no haversack, no coppers for their purses. They were to wear sandals, but, he added, ‘Do not take a spare tunic.’ And he said to them, ‘If you enter a house anywhere, stay there until you leave the district. And if any place does not welcome you and people refuse to listen to you, as you walk away shake off the dust from under your feet as a sign to them.’ So they set off to preach repentance; and they cast out many devils, and anointed many sick people with oil and cured them.Images from the Word
Liturgical Notes‘A genuflection, made by bending the right knee to the ground, signifies adoration, and therefore it is reserved for the Most Blessed Sacrament … If the tabernacle with the Most Blessed Sacrament is situated in the sanctuary, the Priest, the Deacon and the other ministers genuflect when they approach the altar and when they depart from it but not during the celebration of Mass itself.’
- In pairs
- Stay there
- As a sign
- Go away
- Hidden plan
(General Instruction of the Roman Missal §274)
While devotional practices are part of our life, during the celebration of the Mass they are limited in their use. Devotion to the Blessed Sacrament is very important but during the celebration of the Mass the liturgical requirements are to be observed. Thus genuflection to the Blessed Sacrament at the beginning and the end of the Mass is most appropriate. During the celebration there are only three genuflections to be made: after the showing of the Consecrated Host and Chalice and before Communion. Otherwise the ministers do not genuflect during the usual Sunday Mass. ‘As for me, in justice I shall behold your face; I shall be filled with the vision of your glory.’
THE WORDFirst Reading
Jeremiah 23:1-6The remnant of the flock I will gather to me, and bring them back to their pastures.
Ps 22 R. v. 2R. The Lord is my shepherd;
there is nothing I shall want.
Ephesians 2:13-18Christ, our peace, has made us one.
Jn 10:27Alleluia, alleluia!
My sheep listen to my voice, says the Lord;
I know them, and they follow me.
Mark 6:30-34They were as sheep without a shepherd
The apostles rejoined Jesus and told him all they had done and taught. Then he said to them, ‘You must come away to some lonely place all by yourselves and rest for a while’; for there were so many coming and going that the apostles had no time even to eat. So they went off in a boat to a lonely place where they could be by themselves. But people saw them going, and many could guess where; and from every town they all hurried to the place on foot and reached it before them. So as he stepped ashore he saw a large crowd; and he took pity on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd, and he set himself to teach them at some length.Images from the Word
Liturgical Notes‘Holy Communion has a fuller form as a sign when it takes place under both kinds. For in this form the sign of the Eucharistic banquet is more clearly evident and clearer expression is given to the divine will by which the new and eternal Covenant is ratified in the Blood of the Lord, as also the connection between the Eucharistic banquet and the eschatological banquet in the Kingdom of the Father.’
- Lonely place
- Pity on them
- Blood of Christ
(General Instruction of the Roman Missal §281)
During the celebration of the Mass we both offer and share the Sacrifice of Christ and renew the Covenant given to us by Christ. Both the Sacrifice and Covenant are separately expressed in the rituals of bread and wine. We bring our gifts to be consecrated and receive them in the bread consecrated at that Mass and shared in Communion in the broken bread. As we drink from the Chalice we renew our commitment to the Covenant of Christ. By eating and drinking we proclaim fully and clearly the Mystery of Faith. ‘See, I have God for my help. The Lord sustains my soul. I will sacrifice to you with willing heart, and praise your name, O Lord, for it is good.’
Kings 4:42-44They will eat and have some left over.
Ps 144:10-11.15-18. R. v. 16R. The hand of the Lord feeds us;
he answers all our needs.
Ephesians 4:1-6There is one body, one Lord, one faith, one baptism.
Lk 7:16Alleluia, alleluia!
A great prophet has appeared among us;
God has visited his people.
John 6:1-15He distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted.
Jesus went off to the other side of the Sea of Galilee – or of Tiberias – and a large crowd followed him, impressed by the signs he gave by curing the sick. Jesus climbed the hillside, and sat down there with his disciples. It was shortly before the Jewish feast of Passover.
Looking up, Jesus saw the crowds approaching and said to Philip, ‘Where can we buy some bread for these people to eat?’ He only said this to test Philip; he himself knew exactly what he was going to do. Philip answered, ‘Two hundred denarii would only buy enough to give them a small piece each.’ One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said, ‘There is a small boy here with five barley loaves and two fish; but what is that between so many?’ Jesus said to them, ‘Make the people sit down.’ There was plenty of grass there, and as many as five thousand men sat down. Then Jesus took the loaves, gave thanks and gave them out to all who were sitting ready; he then did the same with the fish, giving out as much as was wanted. When they had eaten enough he said to the disciples, ‘Pick up the pieces left over, so that nothing gets wasted.’ So they picked them up, and filled twelve hampers with scraps left over from the meal of five barley loaves. The people, seeing this sign that he had given, said, ‘This really is the prophet who is to come into the world.’ Jesus, who could see they were about to come and take him by force and make him king, escaped back to the hills by himself.Images from the Word
Liturgical Notes‘In the dioceses of Australia the most common form of the gesture of peace is the handshake, although different practices according to region and culture are not excluded. However it is appropriate that each person offer the sign of peace only to those who are nearest and in a sober manner.’
- So many
- Pieces left over
- Had some over
- Unity of the Spirit
(General Instruction of the Roman Missal §82)
The Rite of Peace provides an opportunity for the assembly to express their ecclesial unity and their commitment to mutual charity. We are expressing what must be the reality in our community: that we are in fact in communion with each other. Before we even approach the celebration of Mass we must be reconciled with anyone with whom we do not share this ecclesial unity—that is the work that we must undertake before Mass begins. Only then can our celebration tell the truth that we are the Body of Christ. ‘God is in his holy place, God who unites those who dwell in his house; he himself gives might and strength to his people.’
THE WORD First Reading
Exodus 16:2-4.12-15I will rain bread from heaven upon you.
Ps 77:3-4.23-25.54 R. 24R. The Lord gave them bread from heaven.
Ephesians 4:17.20-24Put on the new person that has been created in God’s image.
Mt 4:4bAlleluia, alleluia!
No one lives on bread alone,
but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.
John 6:24-35Whoever comes to me will never be hungry; whoever believes in me will never thirst.
When the people saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into boats and crossed to Capernaum to look for Jesus. When they found him on the other side, they said to him, ‘Rabbi, when did you come here?’ Jesus answered:
‘I tell you most solemnly,
you are not looking for me
because you have seen the signs
but because you had all the bread you wanted to eat.
Do not work for food that cannot last,
but work for food that endures to eternal life,
the kind of food the Son of Man is offering you,
for on him the Father, God himself, has set his seal.’
Then they said to him, ‘What must we do if we are to do the works that God wants?’ Jesus gave them this answer, ‘This is working for God: you must believe in the one he has sent.’ So they said, ‘What sign will you give to show us that we should believe in you? What work will you do? Our fathers had manna to eat in the desert; as scripture says: He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’
‘I tell you most solemnly,
it was not Moses who gave you bread from heaven,
it is my Father who gives you the bread from heaven,
the true bread;
for the bread of God
is that which comes down from heaven
and gives life to the world.’
‘Sir,’ they said ‘give us that bread always.’ Jesus answered:
‘I am the bread of life.
He who comes to me will never be hungry;
he who believes in me will never thirst.’Images from the Word
- Look for Jesus
- Food that endures
- Bread from heaven
- Rain down bread
- Aimless kind of life
‘In the Universal Prayer or Prayer of the Faithful, the people respond in some sense to the Word of God which they have received in faith and, exercising the office of their baptismal priesthood, offer prayers to God for the salvation of all. It is desirable that there usually be such a form of prayer in Masses celebrated with the people, so that petitions may be offered for the holy Church, for those who govern with authority over us, for those weighed down by various needs, for all humanity, and for the salvation of the whole world.’ (General Instruction of the Roman Missal §69)
We gather for Mass as the priestly people of God and exercise that priesthood in many ways during the celebration. In the Prayer of the Faithful we join in Jesus’ priestly prayer of intercession for the needs of our world. Because of the diverse needs in each community, it is important for each community to prepare their own texts to reflect that diversity. Then the prayer is the Prayer of this assembly of the Faithful. ‘O God, come to my assistance; O Lord, make haste to help me! You are my rescuer, my help; O Lord, do not delay.’
THE WORDFirst Reading
Kings 19:4-8Strengthened by the food, he walked to the mountain of the Lord.
Ps 33:2-9. R. v. 9R. Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
Ephesians 4:30-5:2Walk in love, just as Christ.
Jn 6:51Alleluia, alleluia!
I am the living bread from heaven, says the Lord;
whoever eats this bread will live for ever.
John 6:41-51I am the living bread come down from heaven.
The Jews were complaining to each other about Jesus, because he had said, ‘I am the bread that came down from heaven.’ ‘Surely this is Jesus son of Joseph’ they said. ‘We know his father and mother. How can he now say, “I have come down from heaven”?’ Jesus said in reply, ‘Stop complaining to each other.
‘No one can come to me
unless he is drawn by the Father who sent me,
and I will raise him up at the last day.
It is written in the prophets:
They will all be taught by God,
and to hear the teaching of the Father,
and learn from it,
is to come to me.
Not that anybody has seen the Father,
except the one who comes from God:
he has seen the Father.
I tell you most solemnly,
everybody who believes has eternal life.
I am the bread of life.
Your fathers ate the manna in the desert
and they are dead;
but this is the bread that comes down from heaven,
so that a man may eat it and not die.
I am the living bread which has come down from heaven.
Anyone who eats this bread will live for ever;
and the bread that I shall give
is my flesh, for the life of the world’.Images from the Word
Liturgical Notes‘Now the centre and high point of the entire celebration begins: namely, the Eucharistic Prayer itself, that is, the prayer of thanksgiving and sanctification. The Priest calls upon the people to lift up their hearts towards the Lord in prayer and thanksgiving; he associates the people with himself in the Prayer that he addresses in the name of the entire community to God the Father through Jesus Christ in the Holy Spirit.’
- From heaven
- Bread of life
- My flesh
- Take my life
- Sacrifice to God
(General Instruction of the Roman Missal §78)
Sometimes the Eucharistic Prayer comes across as the work of the presiding priest. Many may even retreat into their own prayers while the prayer is made. In contrast, the Eucharistic Prayer is the ‘centre and high point of the entire celebration’. This is the unique time for the assembly to offer thanks and sacrifice to the Father. It is truly right and just that the assembly make this prayer their own by putting concrete examples of their life of sacrifice before God. ‘Look to your covenant, O Lord, and forget not the life of your poor ones for ever. Arise, O God, and defend your cause, and forget not the cries of those who seek you.’
Proverbs 9:1-6Come and eat my bread, drink the wine I have prepared.
Ps 33:2-3.10-15. R. v. 9R. Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
Ephesians 5:15-20Be watchful that you may know the will of God
Jn 6:57Alleluia, alleluia!
All who eat my flesh and drink my blood
live in me and I in them, says the Lord.
John 6:51-58My flesh is real food and my blood is real drink.
Jesus said to the crowd:
‘I am the living bread which has come down from heaven.
Anyone who eats this bread will live for ever;
and the bread that I shall give
is my flesh, for the life of the world.’
Then the Jews started arguing with one another: ‘How can this man give us his flesh to eat?’ they said. Jesus replied:
‘I tell you most solemnly,
if you do not eat the flesh of the Son of Man
and drink his blood,
you will not have life in you.
Anyone who does eat my flesh and drink my blood
has eternal life,
and I shall raise him up on the last day.
For my flesh is real food
and my blood is real drink.
He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood
lives in me
and I live in him.
As I, who am sent by the living Father,
myself draw life from the Father,
so whoever eats me will draw life from me.
This is the bread come down from heaven;
not like the bread our ancestors ate:
they are dead,
but anyone who eats this bread will live for ever.’Images from the Word
- Life of the world
- Eternal life
- Draw life
- Laid her table
- Thanks to God
‘Great importance should be attached to the use of singing in the celebration of the Mass, with due consideration for the culture of peoples and abilities of each liturgical assembly. Although it is not always necessary (e.g., in weekday Masses) to sing all the texts that are in principle meant to be sung, every care should be taken that singing by the ministers and the people not be absent in celebrations that occur on Sundays and on holy days of obligation.’
(General Instruction of the Roman Missal §40)
Throughout the Mass there are parts which had their origin as song, and therefore should be sung. The Church encourages that their singing be the usual form for Sunday Masses. Singing is able to help us lift up our hearts to God. It also enables us to form one voice in our praise to God. ‘Turn your eyes, O God, our shield; and look on the face of your anointed one; one day within your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere.’
Joshua 24:1-2.15-18We will serve the Lord God, because he is our God.
Ps 33:2-3.16-23. R. v. 9R. Taste and see the goodness of the Lord.
Ephesians 5:21-32This is the great mystery, it applies to Christ and the Church.
cf. Jn 6:63:68Alleluia, alleluia!
Your words, Lord, are spirit and life,
you have the words of everlasting life.
John 6:60-69Lord, whom shall we go to? You have the words of everlasting life.
After hearing his doctrine many of the followers of Jesus said, ‘This is intolerable language. How could anyone accept it?’ Jesus was aware that his followers were complaining about it and said, ‘Does this upset you? What if you should see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before?
‘It is the spirit that gives life,
the flesh has nothing to offer.
The words I have spoken to you are spirit
and they are life.
‘But there are some of you who do not believe.’ For Jesus knew from the outset those who did not believe, and who it was that would betray him. He went on, ‘This is why I told you that no one could come to me unless the Father allows him.’ After this, many of his disciples left him and stopped going with him.
Then Jesus said to the Twelve, ‘What about you, do you want to go away too?’ Simon Peter answered, ‘Lord, who shall we go to? You have the message of eternal life, and we believe; we know that you are the Holy One of God.’Images from the Word
Liturgical Notes‘In the readings, the table of God’s Word is spread before the faithful, and the treasures of the Bible are opened to them. Hence, it is preferable that the arrangement of the biblical readings be maintained, for by them the unity of both Testaments and of salvation history is brought out.’
- They are life
- Holy One of God
- Choose today
- Its living parts
(General Instruction of the Roman Missal §57)
During our Sunday Mass we are fed at both the table of God’s Word and at the table of the Eucharist. Both tables provide us with the bread of life. From the table of the Word we encounter Christ who calls us to the table of his Eucharist so that we may be living members of his Body in the coming week. Our generation has been blessed by being exposed to the greater treasures of the Bible. But has this familiarity lessened our openness to God’s Word? ‘Turn your ear, O Lord, and answer me; save the servant who trusts in you, my God. Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I cry to you all the day long.’