DAILY MASS READINGS (April 18, 2019)


Reading 1 (ISAIAH 61:1-3A, 6A, 8B-9)

A reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah

The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me,
because the LORD has anointed me;
He has sent me to bring glad tidings to the lowly,
to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
and release to the prisoners,
To announce a year of favor from the LORD
and a day of vindication by our God,
to comfort all who mourn;
To place on those who mourn in Zion
a diadem instead of ashes,
To give them oil of gladness in place of mourning,
a glorious mantle instead of a listless spirit.

You yourselves shall be named priests of the LORD,
ministers of our God shall you be called.

I will give them their recompense faithfully,
a lasting covenant I will make with them.
Their descendants shall be renowned among the nations,
and their offspring among the peoples;
All who see them shall acknowledge them
as a race the LORD has blessed.

– The word of the Lord.

Responsorial Psalm (PSALM 89:21-22, 25 AND 27)

R. (2)  For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.
“I have found David, my servant;
with my holy oil I have anointed him.
That my hand may always be with him;
and that my arm may make him strong.”
R. For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.
“My faithfulness and my mercy shall be with him;
and through my name shall his horn be exalted.
He shall say of me, ‘You are my father,
my God, the Rock, my savior!'”
R. For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.

Reading 2 (REVELATION 1:5-8)

A reading from the Book of Revelation

[Grace to you and peace] from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness,
the firstborn of the dead and ruler of the kings of the earth.
To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his Blood, 
who has made us into a Kingdom, priests for his God and Father, 
to him be glory and power forever and ever. Amen.

Behold, he is coming amid the clouds,
and every eye will see him,
even those who pierced him.
All the peoples of the earth will lament him.
Yes. Amen.

“I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, 
“the one who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”

– The word of the Lord.

Verse Before The Gospel (ISAIAH 61:1 [CITED IN LK 4:18])

(Glory and praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.)

The Spirit of the LORD is upon me;
for he has sent me to bring glad tidings to the poor.

(Glory and praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.)

Gospel (LUKE 4:16-21)

A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Luke

Jesus came to Nazareth, where he had grown up, 
and went according to his custom
into the synagogue on the sabbath day.
He stood up to read and was handed a scroll of the prophet Isaiah.
He unrolled the scroll and found the passage where it was written:

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me
to bring glad tidings to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives
and recovery of sight to the blind,
to let the oppressed go free,
and to proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord.

Rolling up the scroll, he handed it back to the attendant and sat down,
 and the eyes of all in the synagogue looked intently at him.
He said to them, 
“Today this Scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.”

– The Gospel of the Lord.

Reflection: Separately, a Priest celebrates his Presbyteral Anniversary in any day. But every Holy Thursday, all Priests celebrate the Anniversary of Priesthood. It is because our Lord Jesus Christ instituted not only the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist during the Last Supper, but also the Sacrament of Holy Orders. The priests during the Old Testament perform the sacred rituals, customs, and traditions such as burning incense in the Temple and offering animals as sacrifices. Now renewed by the New Testament, the priests are the instruments of Christ in celebrating the memorial of his saving sacrifice. They’re the ones who proclaim the word of God and administer the Sacraments except Confirmation and Holy Orders. They help celebrate the efficacious signs of the true and eternal Priest, Jesus Christ, to renew and strengthen our faith. As the Messiah, Jesus came to the world to fulfill the prophecy Isaiah spoke in the First Reading (Isaiah 61:1-3, 6a, 8b-9). But as the true and eternal Priest, the greatest act he did was what his cousin foretold him as the Lamb of God, his Paschal Mystery. By his sacrifice, we don’t have to do the Old Testament rituals of burnt offerings because he made the perfect sacrifice once and for all. Yet in order that his sacrifice may be commemorated spiritually, as what he commanded during the Last Supper, he instituted the Priesthood. Christ began the Apostolic Succession through Saint Peter and the Apostles, which was handed down to the Popes, Bishops, then to the Priests, who are assisted by the Deacons. Nowadays every member of the parish supports each his/her own Priests. As we journey down the end of this Lenten road, we do not have to be Priests or Nuns to proclaim God’s love, but let us proclaim it by our daily lifestyles. What matters is that we are humble in carrying out his mission. Let us also pray for our dearly beloved Priests in our parishes/chapels that they may live a renewed committed life in serving the Lord and his people, which includes also us.

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