The Lord stands by me and gives me power. The Lord will rescue me from all evil and bring me safely to his heavenly kingdom. May the Lord be always with you. R/ And also with you.
Introduction by the Celebrant
Poor and Humble Before God
Too often we pretend that we are better than we really are. We wear masks and dare not show our true selves, not even before God. The Lord's message for today says: Stand before God the way you are, be honest and humble with yourself, and you will learn to be without pretense before God and the people around you. Such an attitude brings us close to God, close to our real self, close to people. Let us ask the Lord to hear our prayer today.
B. God Sees What Is In UsIf we try our best to live decently as good Christians who serve God well, would we still deserve a scolding from God? The message of today says yes. What is really our attitude before God? Do we think God should be grateful to us for all the things we have done for him? Do we look down on others who fail, who are weak and turn wrong? Are we aware that they also do good things? He sees what is good in them and he loves them for it. We pray that Jesus may give us an attitude of honesty with ourselves, with God and with people.
Let us examine ourselves before the Lord to see who we really are and in what ways we have to change. (pause) Lord Jesus, be merciful to us, for we are sinners in need of conversion: Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy. Lord Jesus, you always hear the cries of the poor: Christ, have mercy. R/ Christ, have mercy. Lord Jesus, you are close to the brokenhearted and you hear the prayer of the humble: Lord, have mercy. R/ Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy on us, sinners. Restore us, make us free and alive and lead us to everlasting life. R/ Amen.
Let us pray to God for we expect from him all that is good (pause) Kind and merciful Father, we stand before you empty-handed and we feel small and frail before you. Forgive us for the times we boast of the good that you gave us the grace to do. Fill our poverty with your gifts, keep us from looking down on any of our brothers and sisters, and give us grateful hearts for all that we have received from you. We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
Liturgy of the Word
First Reading Introduction: The Prayer Of The Humble Pierces The Clouds God hears the prayer of the humble who are aware of how poor they are before God.
Second Reading Introduction: I Have Fought The Good Fight To The End
Paul knows that the end of his life is approaching. He has remained loyal to God, who is his hope. He professes his trusting faith in God, who has been loyal to him to the end.
Gospel Introduction: God Hears Those Aware Of Their Poverty
God rejects the prayer of the self-righteous person, but listens to that of the sinner who is aware of his inner poverty.
Let us pray to the Father in heaven who hears the cries of the humble, and let us say: R/ Lord, hear your people. • For the Church, we the people saved by God's love, that we may not rebuff or alienate anyone through superior attitudes, let us pray: R/ Lord, hear your people. • For those in the Church to whom the ministry of reconciliation has been especially entrusted, that they may be uncompromising with evil yet welcome sinners with respect and mercy, let us pray: R/ Lord, hear your people. • For the leaders of nations and public servants, that like God they may be especially attentive to the poor and marginal people, let us pray: R/ Lord, hear your people. • For those who are rich in possessions and God-given talents, that they may not look down on the less privileged but invest their wealth and potentials in the growth of the country and all its people, let us pray: R/ Lord, hear your people. • For each of us in this community, that we may realize how poor we are before God and one another and be open to continuous renewal and conversion, let us pray: R/ Lord, hear your people. Lord our God, we know that beautiful words mean little if they do not spring from humble and sincere hearts. Help us to do as we say and to live as we pray, that you may hear our prayer through Jesus Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
Prayer over the Gifts
Lord our God, merciful Father, you are partial to the poor. From your own gifts we bring before you bread and wine. Make us as humble and genuine as these offerings, that we may experience your forgiveness and love through him who humbled himself for us, Jesus Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
Introduction to the Eucharistic Prayer
Let us offer our praise to God and pray that his name may be known and worshipped over all the earth.
Invitation to the Lord's Prayer
By the grace of God we dare to pray the prayer of the humble Jesus: R/ Our Father...
Deliver us from every evil and grant us your peace in our day. Set us free from our self-sufficient pride, which blinds us to our inner poverty, harden our hearts and makes us look down on others. Help us to seek you and your kingdom, that we may hasten the full coming among us of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. R/ For the kingdom...
Invitation to Communion
This is Jesus, the Lamb of God who humbled himself to be with us and to take our sins away. Happy are we to be invited to the table that he has set for the poor, the little ones, and sinners. R/ Lord, I am not worthy...
Prayer after Communion
God, our merciful Father, we realize that we are sinners in constant need of your mercy. We thank you in the poverty of our hearts that you have let us eat from Jesus' table, notwithstanding our little faith, and our lukewarm love. Keep accepting us the way we are, help us to be and to do better, and receive our wholehearted thanks for all the good you have done for us and for our brothers and sisters. We ask this through Christ our Lord. R/ Amen.
In this Eucharist we have thanked God for having made us rich by the grace of Jesus and his Gospel. May God fill you with his good gifts and bless you all: the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. R/ Amen. Go in the peace of the Lord, and may he go with you on all your ways. R/ Thanks be to God.