DAILY MASS READINGS (August 22, 2019)

MEMORIAL OF THE QUEENSHIP OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY (YEAR I, White)

Reading 1 (JUDGES 11:29-39A)

A reading from the Book of Judges

The Spirit of the LORD came upon Jephthah.
He passed through Gilead and Manasseh,
and through Mizpah-Gilead as well,
and from there he went on to the Ammonites.
Jephthah made a vow to the LORD.
“If you deliver the Ammonites into my power,” he said,
“whoever comes out of the doors of my house
to meet me when I return in triumph from the Ammonites
shall belong to the LORD.
I shall offer him up as a burnt offering.”

Jephthah then went on to the Ammonites to fight against them,
and the LORD delivered them into his power,
so that he inflicted a severe defeat on them,
from Aroer to the approach of Minnith (twenty cities in all)
and as far as Abel-keramim.
Thus were the Ammonites brought into subjection
by the children of Israel.
When Jephthah returned to his house in Mizpah,
it was his daughter who came forth,
playing the tambourines and dancing.
She was an only child: he had neither son nor daughter besides her.
When he saw her, he rent his garments and said,
“Alas, daughter, you have struck me down
and brought calamity upon me.
For I have made a vow to the LORD and I cannot retract.”
She replied, “Father, you have made a vow to the LORD.
Do with me as you have vowed,
because the LORD has wrought vengeance for you
on your enemies the Ammonites.”
Then she said to her father, “Let me have this favor.
Spare me for two months, that I may go off down the mountains
to mourn my virginity with my companions.”
“Go,” he replied, and sent her away for two months.
So she departed with her companions
and mourned her virginity on the mountains.
At the end of the two months she returned to her father,
who did to her as he had vowed.

– The word of the Lord.

Or: (ISAIAH 9:1-6)

A reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah

The people who walked in darkness
have seen a great light;
Upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom
a light has shone.
You have brought them abundant joy
and great rejoicing,
As they rejoice before you as at the harvest,
as men make merry when dividing spoils.
For the yoke that burdened them,
the pole on their shoulder,
And the rod of their taskmaster
you have smashed, as on the day of Midian.
For every boot that tramped in battle,
every cloak rolled in blood,
will be burned as fuel for flames.

For a child is born to us, a son is given us;
upon his shoulder dominion rests.
They name him Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero,
Father-Forever, Prince of Peace.
His dominion is vast
and forever peaceful,
From David’s throne, and over his kingdom,
which he confirms and sustains
By judgment and justice,
both now and forever.
The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this!

– The word of the Lord.

Responsorial Psalm (PSALM 40:5, 7-8A, 8B-9, 10)

R.(8a and 9a) Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
Blessed the man who makes the LORD his trust;
who turns not to idolatry
or to those who stray after falsehood.
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
Sacrifice or oblation you wished not,
but ears open to obedience you gave me.
Burnt offerings or sin-offerings you sought not;
then said I, “Behold I come.”
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
“In the written scroll it is prescribed for me. 
To do your will, O my God, is my delight,
and your law is within my heart!”
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.
I announced your justice in the vast assembly;
I did not restrain my lips, as you, O LORD, know.
R. Here I am, Lord; I come to do your will.

Or: (PSALM 113:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7-8)

R.    (2)  Blessed be the name of the Lord for ever.
or:
R.    Alleluia.
Praise, you servants of the LORD,
praise the name of the LORD.
Blessed be the name of the LORD
both now and forever.
R.    Blessed be the name of the Lord for ever.
or:
R.    Alleluia.
From the rising to the setting of the sun
is the name of the LORD to be praised.
High above all nations is the LORD;
above the heavens is his glory.
R.    Blessed be the name of the Lord for ever.
or:
R.    Alleluia.
Who is like the LORD, our God, who is enthroned on high
and looks upon the heavens and the earth below?
R.    Blessed be the name of the Lord for ever.
or:
R.    Alleluia.
He raises up the lowly from the dust;
from the dunghill he lifts up the poor
To seat them with princes,
with the princes of his own people.
R.    Blessed be the name of the Lord for ever.
or:
R.    Alleluia.

Alleluia (PSALM 95:8)

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
If today you hear his voice,
harden not your hearts.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Or: (SEE LUKE 1:28)

R.    Alleluia, alleluia.
Hail, Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you;
blessed are you among women.
R.    Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel (MATTHEW 22:1-14)

A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Matthew

Jesus again in reply spoke to the chief priests and the elders of the people in parables
saying, “The Kingdom of heaven may be likened to a king
who gave a wedding feast for his son.
He dispatched his servants to summon the invited guests to the feast,
but they refused to come.
A second time he sent other servants, saying,
‘Tell those invited: “Behold, I have prepared my banquet,
my calves and fattened cattle are killed,
and everything is ready; come to the feast.”‘
Some ignored the invitation and went away,
one to his farm, another to his business.
The rest laid hold of his servants,
mistreated them, and killed them.
The king was enraged and sent his troops,
destroyed those murderers, and burned their city.
Then the king said to his servants, ‘The feast is ready,
but those who were invited were not worthy to come.
Go out, therefore, into the main roads
and invite to the feast whomever you find.’
The servants went out into the streets
and gathered all they found, bad and good alike,
and the hall was filled with guests.
But when the king came in to meet the guests
he saw a man there not dressed in a wedding garment.
He said to him, ‘My friend, how is it
that you came in here without a wedding garment?’
But he was reduced to silence.
Then the king said to his attendants, ‘Bind his hands and feet,
and cast him into the darkness outside,
where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.’
Many are invited, but few are chosen.”

– The Gospel of the Lord.

Reflection: The Lord calls us to be his people, his adopted sons and daughters, to live faithfully before his sight. In the Gospel (Matthew 22:1-14), Jesus tells the Parable of the Wedding Feast to the chief priests and elders who tested him by questioning the origin of his authority. Here he narrates how the king throws a banquet for the people in celebration of his son’s wedding, however no one wants to come. So the king wants to send in the invitation again, however the servants have been beaten and killed, while some survived. So he sends in a fire to burn that city, but he doesn’t give up hope to invite those whom the servants can find. So they have been able to invite ordinary people with the instruction to put on their best clothing, and the hall has been filled with guests. But a man without a wedding garment is thrown out of the palace into the place where there is wailing and grinding of teeth. And Jesus concludes that many are invited, but few are chosen. God enjoins us to feast at his banquet in the celebration of the Holy Eucharist, but it also entails for us to have external and internal dispositions. External disposition is shown such as proper dress code and observation of proper etiquette and behavior. Internal disposition is shown such as living the faith and the messages of the Readings by concrete actions of goodness, truthfulness, and kindness. Every time we gather at the Eucharistic banquet, Jesus wants to nourish us with the table of the Word and the table of the Body. The Mass is the perpetual memorial of Christ’s saving sacrifice, and so it is fitting that we make every celebration solemn and meaningful. We are also called to receive him in Holy Communion because he is sacramentally present in the sacred host. However we have to examine ourselves whether we have confessed our mortal sins or not because we cannot receive Communion if we are in the grave state of mortal sin. It is also because St. Paul says that if we receive unworthily the Body and Blood of the Lord will have to answer for that (Cf. 1 Corinthians 11:27-28). But we can also make an Act of Spiritual Communion to express our desire to Christ to come to us spiritually even though we cannot receive him sacramentally. Now on the other hand, when we receive Holy Communion, Christ wants to spiritually nourish our lives, both body and soul. And we are called at the end of the Mass to go forth in peace and glorify the Lord in our lives. We strive to manifest the teachings our Lord has taught and apply them in the daily contexts and contemporary situations. May whatever we have received become our mission in life

Or: (LUKE 1:26-38)

A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Luke

The angel Gabriel was sent from God
to a town of Galilee called Nazareth,
to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph,
of the house of David,
and the virgin’s name was Mary.
And coming to her, he said,
“Hail, full of grace! The Lord is with you.”
But she was greatly troubled at what was said
and pondered what sort of greeting this might be.
Then the angel said to her,
“Do not be afraid, Mary,
for you have found favor with God.
Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son,
and you shall name him Jesus.
He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High,
and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father,
and he will rule over the house of Jacob forever,
and of his Kingdom there will be no end.”
But Mary said to the angel,
“How can this be,
since I have no relations with a man?”
And the angel said to her in reply,
“The Holy Spirit will come upon you,
and the power of the Most High will overshadow you.
Therefore the child to be born
will be called holy, the Son of God.
And behold, Elizabeth, your relative,
has also conceived a son in her old age,
and this is the sixth month for her who was called barren;
for nothing will be impossible for God.”
Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord.
May it be done to me according to your word.”
Then the angel departed from her.

– The Gospel of the Lord.

Reflection: Today, we celebrate the Memorial of the Queenship of our Blessed Mother Mary. It falls a week after the Solemnity of the Assumption because after Mary was taken up to heaven body and soul, she was crowned Queen of Heaven and Earth. She merited this because of her faithfulness, humility, and obedience towards the divine plan of God. She who is full of grace has shown her being blessedness by treasuring all the events that happened to her and pondered them in her heart. She is known to be the first disciple of our Lord Jesus Christ, especially when he entrusted her to us as our spiritual Mother. A true follower of the Lord should not boast that he is more obedient and righteous than the rest. In humility we show our kindness towards others that we may help them also become disciples of Christ and messengers of God’s love. This is the example shown by our Blessed Mother Mary when she accepted God’s will with faith, humility, and obedience. She showed kindness to her cousin Elizabeth giving birth to Saint John the Baptist. She held the Child Jesus in her loving and protecting arms. She kept all the things that happened to her and reflected them in her heart. She interceded the first miracle at Cana when she told the servants to obey his Son. And she also endured the pain of her Son’s crucifixion still trusting on God’s plan, and at that point, she becomes our own Mother interceding for us before God and man. And because she was assumed into heaven body and soul and became Queen of Heaven and Earth, we are assured of the promise of eternal life in heaven.

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