Sin is the great barrier between God and man. Sin caused the beginning of hell and made devils of the fallen angels. Sin drove Adam and Eve out of their paradise and took away their marvelous gifts of grace and of freedom from sickness and death. But only in the sufferings and death of the God-man do we see what God really thinks of sin. Before sin there existed no sickness, no death, no hatred, no discord, no ugliness. Every suffering and disorder in the world is a reflection of sin. Every Mass, continuing the atoning Sacrifice of Calvary, is God's mercy to sinners throughout the world. Every sacrament is God's means of restoring all things in Christ.
INTROIT Ps. 25:11-12
Redeem me, O Lord, and have pity on me, for my foot stands on the right path. In the assemblies I will bless the Lord.
Ps. 25:1. Do me justice, O Lord, for I have walked in innocence, and in the Lord I trust without wavering.
V. Glory be . . .
O Almighty God, while Your servants mortify their bodies by fasting, may they also follow after righteousness and avoid sin. Through Our Lord . . .
LESSON Dan. 9:15-19
In those days, Daniel prayed to the Lord, saying, "O Lord, our God, who hast brought forth thy people out of the land of Egypt, with a strong hand, and hast made thee a name as at this day: we have sinned, we have committed iniquity, O Lord, against all thy justice: let thy wrath and thy indignation be turned away, I beseech thee, from thy city, Jerusalem, and from thy holy mountain. For by reason of our sins, and the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem, and thy people, are a reproach to all that are round about us.
"Now, therefore, O our God, hear the supplication of thy servant, and his prayers: and shew thy face upon thy sanctuary, which is desolate, for thy own sake. Incline, O my God, thy ear, and hear: open thy eyes, and see our desolation, and the city upon which thy name is called: for it is not for our justifications that we present our prayers before thy face, but for the multitude of thy tender mercies. O Lord, hear: O Lord, be appeased: hearken, and do: delay not, for thy own sake, O my God: because thy name is invocated upon thy city, and upon thy people."
GRADUAL Ps. 69:6, 3
Help me and deliver me, O Lord, make no delay! V. Let my enemies who seek my life be put to shame and confounded.
TRACT Ps. 102:10; 78:8-9
O Lord, repay us not according to the sins we have committed, nor according to our iniquities. V. O Lord, remember not our iniquities of the past; let Your mercy come quickly to us, for we are being brought very low. (All kneel.) V. Help us, O God our Savior, and for the glory of Your name. O Lord, deliver us; and pardon us our sins for Your name's sake.
GOSPEL John 8:21-29
At that time, Jesus said to them: "I go: and you shall seek me. And you shall die in your sin. Whither I go, you cannot come." The Jews therefore said: "Will he kill himself, because he said: Whither I go you cannot come?"
And he said to them: "You are from beneath: I am from above. You are of this world: I am not of this world. Therefore I said to you that you shall die in your sins. For if you believe not that I am he, you shall die in your sin." They said therefore to him: "Who art thou?" Jesus said to them: "The beginning, who also speak unto you. Many things I have to speak and to judge of you. But he that sent me, is true: and the things I have heard of him, these same I speak in the world." And they understood not that he called God his Father.
Jesus therefore said to them: "When you shall have lifted up, the Son of man, then shall you know that I am he and that I do nothing of myself. But as the Father hath taught me, these things I speak. And he that sent me is with me: and he hath not left me alone. For I do always the things that please him."
OFFERTORY Ps. 15:7, 8
I bless the Lord, who has given me understanding. I set the Lord ever before me; with Him at my right hand I shall not be disturbed.
O Lord, protect us through this sacrifice which we offer to atone for our sins and to give glory to You. Through Our Lord . . .
COMMUNION ANTIPHON Ps. 8:2
O Lord, our Lord, how glorious is Your name over all the earth!
O Lord, may this Communion cleanse us from sin, and bestow upon us spiritual health from heaven. Through Our Lord . . .
PRAYER OVER THE PEOPLE
Hear our petitions, O Almighty God. Your love has given us hope; let Your unfailing mercy protect us. Through our Lord . . .