Jesus, eternal God, became mortal man in order to mediate our redemption, to form a new people that would be His Mystical Self, and to bring all men into an eternal union with Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. There can be no living of Christ without living the price of mediation for souls. That price may vary, from mere fidelity in the performance of monotonous duty, to bearing with loneliness and misunderstanding, or even to suffering violence and death. Sin continues, and therefore suffering for sin must continue. Since Christians share Christ's priesthood through Baptism and Confirmation, His passion becomes their passion, for an "eternal inheritance."
INTROIT(Ps. 42:1-2)Do me justice, O God, and fight against a faithless people; from the deceitful and impious man rescue me. For You, O God, are my strength.
Ps. 42:3. Send forth Your light and Your truth; they shall lead me on and bring me to Your holy mountain, to Your dwelling place. Do me justice, O God . . .
O Almighty God, look with mercy upon Your family. Guide and guard us in body and soul by Your bounteous grace and protection. Through Our Lord . . .
EPISTLE (Heb. 9:11-15)
Brethren: But Christ, being come an high Priest of the good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hand, that is, not of this creation: Neither by the blood of goats or of calves, but by his own blood, entered once into the Holies, having obtained eternal redemption. For if the blood of goats and of oxen, and the ashes of an heifer, being sprinkled, sanctify such as are defiled, to the cleansing of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Christ, who by the Holy Ghost offered himself unspotted unto God, cleanse our conscience from dead works, to serve the living God?
And therefore he is the mediator of the new testament: that by means of his death for the redemption of those transgressions which were under the former testament, they that are called may receive the promise of eternal inheritance.
GRADUAL (Ps. 142:9, 10; 17:48-49)
Rescue me from my enemies, O Lord. Teach me to do Your will.
V. O Lord, who preserved me from the wrathful nations, You will exalt me above my adversaries,You will rescue me from the man of violence.
TRACT (Ps. 128:1-4)
Often they have fought against me from my youth.
V. Let Israel now say, "Often have they fought against me from my youth.
V. Yet they could not prevail over me. The wicked have furrowed my back.
V. They have continued their iniquity, but the Lord, who is just, will humble the pride of the sinners."
GOSPEL (John 8:46-59)
At that time, Jesus said to the crowds of the Jews, "Which of you shall convince me of sin? If I say the truth to you, why do you not believe me: He that is of God heareth the words of God. Therefore you hear them not, because you are not of God."
The Jews therefore answered and said to him: "Do not we say well that thou art a Samaritan and hast a devil?" Jesus answered: "I have not a devil: but I honour my Father. And you have dishonoured me. But I seek not my own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth. Amen, amen, I say to you: If any man keep my word, he shall not see death for ever."
The Jews therefore said: "Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets: and thou sayest: If any man keep my word, he shall not taste death for ever. Art thou greater than our father Abraham who is dead? And the prophets are dead. Whom dost thou make thyself?"
Jesus answered: "If I glorify myself, my glory is nothing. It is my Father that glorifieth me, of whom you say that he is your God. And you have not known him: but I know him. And if I shall say that I know him not, I shall be like to you, a liar. But I do know him and do keep his word. Abraham your father rejoiced that he might see my day: he saw it and was glad." The Jews therefore said to him: "Thou art not yet fifty years old. And hast thou seen Abraham?" Jesus said to them:"Amen, amen, I say to you, before Abraham was made, I AM." They took up stones therefore to cast at him. But Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple.
OFFERTORY ANTIPHON(Ps. 118:17, 107)
I will praise You, O Lord, with my whole heart. Be good to Your servant, that I may live and keep Your words. O Lord, give me life according to Your word.
O Lord, may these offerings free us from the bondage of sin and win for us the gift of Your mercy. Through Our Lord . . .
Preface of the Holy Cross
COMMUNION ANTIPHON (I Cor. 11:24, 25)
"This is My Body which shall be given up for you; this cup is the New Covenant in My Blood," said the Lord. "Do this as often as you receive it, in remembrance of Me."
Be close to us, O Lord our God, and with Your unfailing help defend those who have been renewed through Your Sacrament. Through Our Lord . . .