Roman Style Mass Chasuble
Front & Back
Gothic Style Mass Chasuble
Front & Back
Brethren: If I speak with the tongues of men, and of angels, and have not Charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And if I should have prophecy and should know all mysteries, and all knowledge, and if I should have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. And if I should distribute all my goods to feed the poor, and if I should deliver my body to be burned, and have not Charity, it profiteth me nothing.
Charity is patient, is kind: Charity envieth not, dealeth not perversely; is not puffed up; Is not ambitious, seeketh not her own, is not provoked to anger, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth with the Truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never falleth away: whether prophecies shall be made void, or tongues shall cease, or knowledge shall be destroyed.
For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, that which is in part shall be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child. But, when I became a man, I put away the things of a child. We see now through a glass in a dark manner; but then face to face. Now I know I part; but then I shall know even as I am known.
And now there remain
Faith, Hope, and Charity, these three: but the greatest of these is Charity.
Please stand for the Holy Gospel.
The Gospel appointed to be read during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass today is taken from the Holy Gospel of Saint Luke, Chapter 18, Verses 31-43.
At that time: Jesus took unto him the Twelve, and said to them: Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things shall be accomplished which were written by the prophets concerning the Son of man. For he shall be delivered to the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and scourged, and spit upon: And after they have scourged him, they will put him to death; and the third day he shall rise again.
And they understood none of these things, and this word was hid from them, and they understood not the things that were said.
Now it came to pass, when He drew nigh to Jericho, that a certain blind man sat by the way side, begging. And when he heard the multitude passing by, he asked what this meant. And they told him, that Jesus of Nazareth was passing by. And he cried out, saying: Jesus, son of David, have mercy on me. And they that went before, rebuked him, that he should hold his peace: but he cried out much more: Son of David, have mercy on me.
And Jesus standing, commanded him to be brought unto him. And when he was come near, He asked him, Saying: What wilt thou that I do to thee? But he said: Lord, that I may see.
And Jesus said to him: Receive thy sight: thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he saw, and followed Him, glorifying God. And all the people, when they saw it, gave praise to God.
Thus far are the words of today's Holy Gospel.
This Gospel has many lessons for all of us.
For example, consider this “certain blind man” who was not only financially very poor and had to beg because he had no job due to his blindness, but he was also very poor because he was in continual darkness.
Also consider how it was proper for the blind man to ask the crowd what was happening. Why? Because, IF he had not asked, he would not have been told that Jesus was passing by him and that consequently he would not have invoked His Divine Mercy. One lesson here is this: whenever you are in doubt or uncertain about something to ask the advice of a prudent and wise person.
Notice that “he cried out, saying: Jesus, Son of David, have Mercy on me.” (Luke 18:38).
Remember how the crowd had only “told him that Jesus of Nazareth was passing by” (Luke 18:37) but yet how he calls Jesus David’s Son. He cried out to Christ, not only to give him an alms, but to free him from his blindness. See how the blind man professed his belief in Christ as the Son of God and the Redeemer of the world?!
Although he was physically blind, his spirit saw far better than many of those with excellent vision, but who were Spiritually blind for their failure to acknowledge Christ as the Son of God and the promised Messias of the Old Testament Prophets. Sad to say, even today, almost 2,000 years later, there are still many who are Spiritually blind, and not only unbelievers and heretics, but also those Catholics who disregard the duties of their state in life or who live unrepentant of their sins.
The Scripture says that “they that went before, rebuked him, that he should hold his peace: but he cried out much more: Son of David, have Mercy on me.” (Luke 18:39). The crowd did this, either because they thought that this crying out would displease Christ, or because it irritated them. Yet reflect that just as God has patience with each of us, so also pray for God’s Grace to exercise the Virtue of Patience with others.
The Scripture continues, telling us: “And Jesus standing, commanded him to be brought unto Him. And when he was come near, He asked him, saying: What wilt thou that I do to thee? But he said: Lord, that I may see.” (Luke 18:40-41).
Here you will note that Christ allowed Himself to be repeatedly invoked without seeming to notice it. Yet, after a time, Christ asks him: “What wilt thou that I do to thee?” even though Christ already knew what the blind man wanted.
The lesson here is of primary importance. Remember how, in another Scripture, Christ clearly tells all of us to “ask, and it shall be given you: seek, and you shall find: knock, and it shall be opened to you. For every one that asketh, receiveth: and he that seeketh, findeth: and to him that knocketh, it shall be opened.” (Matthew 7:7-8; emphasis added).
God always acts in this way. God knows our necessities and is always ready to help us, but God wants us to ask Him in the correct way by the exercise the Virtues of Patience and Perseverance and the Gift of Fortitude in full trust and confidence in Him in the spirit of genuine and sincere Humility and Meekness.
By doing this, we all make ourselves fit for, and worthy of, God’s Mercy and help in the context of earnest, constant prayer and the acknowledgment of our wretchedness and misery as God the Holy Ghost testifies through the Prophet Isaias: “Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall hear: thou shalt cry, and He shall say, Here I am.” (Isaias 58:9).
See how the words of the blind man, “Lord, that I may see”, include some of the basic qualities of a good prayer such as an acknowledgment of one’s misery and helplessness by Humility and Meekness, plus belief in the power of Christ along with confidence in His Divine goodness. Therefore, all of us should always present our corporal and Spiritual necessities with humility, meekness, perseverance, patience, faith, trust, and confidence, and, like the blind man, we shall get what we want.
“And Jesus said to him: Receive thy sight: thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he saw, and followed Him, glorifying God. And all the people, when they saw it, gave praise to God.” (Luke 18:42-43).Christ quickly and effortlessly manifested His Divine power, by merely saying: “Receive thy sight”. Instantly, the blind man sees. What consolation all of us should have in knowing that Christ will quickly gives us what we pray for, provided we do it correctly.
Christ said: “thy faith hath made thee whole”. In what does this faith consist? That all of us accept what Christ teaches us in His Holy Catholic Church as Divine Truth, hold it firmly, and regulate our life accordingly. But if this faith is wanting, then prayer is not well pleasing to God, and is not heard.
Gratitude is also necessary to get one’s petitions granted. See how the blind man showed his gratitude for the wonderful gift of sight Christ gave him by glorifying God and following Christ. All of us should imitate this blind man, not only by faithfully following Christ, but also daily thanking God for His countless Graces, Blessings, and favors we have received. Whenever we pray for something, this first thing we should do before we list our petitions, is to thank God for the good things He has already so generously showered upon us.
“It can neither profit me, the speaker, to speak, nor you, the hearers, to hear, unless we comply with the things which are spoken, ...so let us not limit the display of our zeal to hearing only, but let us observe what is said in our deeds. For it is indeed a good thing to spend time continually in hearing the Divine oracles: but this good thing becomes useless when the benefit to be derived from hearing is not linked with it.” (Patriarch Saint John Chrysostom [b. Antioch, c. 347 A.D. - d. at Commana in Pontus on Friday, September 14, 407 A.D.], Patriarch of Constantinople [Thursday, February 26, 398 A.D. - Thursday, June 24, 404 A.D.], exiled from his See the 2nd time on Thursday, June 24, 404 A.D., Father and Doctor of the Catholic Church. Sermon on Romans 12:20; emphasis added.)
For our resolutions, let all of us, by the Grace of God, firmly resolve right now thank the good God for your Gift of Sight and ask for His Graces to make a good and proper use of it by avoiding the sins of the eyes, praying with the Psalmist:
“Turn away my eyes that they may not behold vanity.” (Psalm 118:37).Remember to be constant in doing what is good and not to become discouraged by obstacles blocking the path of Virtue. IF the blind man had been intimidated by the rebukes of the crowd and been silent most likely Christ would never have helped him. The Virtue of Perseverance and the Gift of Fortitude prove you are earnest and your efforts will be crowned with success.
The bottom line is “Don’t give up!”
Saint Monica [b. Tagaste, North Africa, in 333 A.D. - d. at Ostia, near Rome, Italy in 387 A.D.] became a very great Saint of the Catholic Church because she never gave up by praying for seventeen years for the conversion of her wayward Son. God rewarded Saint Monica by not only converting her Son to the Catholic Church, but God also made him a great Saint, the most prolific Catholic author of all time, plus the Bishop of Hippo-Regia in Africa.
But IF Saint Monica had given up on her Son, Augustine, especially after she had already been praying for his conversion for over 16 years, when he went from bad to worse, he probably would have lost his Soul, and the Catholic Church would have lost one of her greatest Saints and writers in her history and maybe Monica might never have become SAINT Monica?!
This is what the Scripture means where you read: “The Kingdom of Heaven suffereth violence, and the violent bear it away.” (Matthew 11:12). This means the SPIRITUAL “violence” of never giving up praying for what you want or need by your patient, persistent Masses, prayers, good works, mortifications, devotions, etc.