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  • Writer's picturePhil



✠ In the name of the Father, and of the Son,

and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Lord Jesus, I come to you in sorrow for my failings,

and confess to you my weakness and unbelief.

A brief pause for silence follows

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I confess to almighty God

that I have greatly sinned,

in my thoughts and in my words,

in what I have done and in what I have failed to do,

through my fault, through my fault,

through my most grievous fault;

therefore I ask blessed Mary ever-Virgin,

and all the Angels and Saints,

to pray for me to the Lord our God.

May almighty God have mercy on us,

forgive us our sins,

and bring us to everlasting life. Amen.

THE GLORIA Glory to God in the highest,

and on earth peace to people of good will.

We praise you, we bless you, we adore you,

we glorify you, we give you thanks for your great glory,

Lord God, heavenly King, O God, almighty Father.

Lord Jesus Christ, Only Begotten Son,

Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,

you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us;

you take away the sins of the world, receive our prayer;

you are seated at the right hand of the Father,

have mercy on us.

For you alone are the Holy One,

you alone are the Lord,

you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ,

with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father. Amen.

THE COLLECT: O God, by whom we are redeemed

and receive adoption, look graciously

upon your beloved sons and daughters, that those who believe in Christ may receive true freedom and an everlasting inheritance. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

FIRST READING: A reading from the letter of St James (2:1-5)

My brothers, do not try to combine faith in Jesus Christ, our glorified Lord, with the making of distinctions between classes of people. Now suppose a man comes into your synagogue, beautifully dressed and with a gold ring on, and at the same time a poor man comes in, in shabby clothes, and you take notice of the well-dressed man, and say, “Come this way to the best seats;” then you tell the poor man, “Stand over there” or “You can sit on the floor by my foot[1]rest.” Can’t you see that you have used two different standards in your mind, and turned yourselves into judges, and corrupt judges at that? Listen, my dear brothers: it was those who are poor according to the world that God chose, to be rich in faith and to be the heirs to the kingdom which he promised to those who love him. The word o


My soul, give praise to the Lord.

It is the Lord who keeps faith for ever,

who is just to those who are oppressed.

It is he who gives bread to the hungry,

the Lord, who sets prisoners free.

My soul, give praise to the Lord.

It is the Lord who gives sight to the blind,

who raises up those who are bowed down,

the Lord who loves the just,

the Lord, who protects the stranger.

My soul, give praise to the Lord.

The Lord upholds the widow and orphan,

but thwarts the path of the wicked.

The Lord will reign for ever,

Zion’s God, from age to age.

My soul, give praise to the Lord.


Alleluia, alleluia!

Speak, Lord, your servant is listening:

you have the message of eternal life.


GOSPEL: A reading from the holy Gospel according to Mark (Mk 7:31-37) Returning from the district of Tyre, Jesus went by way of Sidon towards the Sea of Galilee, right through the Decapolis region. And they brought him a deaf man who had an impediment in his speech; and they asked him to lay his hand on him. He took him aside in private, away from the crowd, put his fingers into the man’s ears and touched his tongue with spittle. Then looking up to heaven he sighed; and he said to him, “Ephphatha,” that is, “Be opened.” And his ears were opened, and the ligament of his tongue was loosened and he spoke clearly. And Jesus ordered them to tell no one about it, but the more he insisted, the more widely they published it. Their admiration was unbounded. “He has done all things well,” they said “he makes the deaf hear and the dumb speak.”

The Gospel of the Lord. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

REFLECTION - Making distinctions (Association of Catholic Priests, Ireland)

When it comes to people, it is very difficult for us not to make distinctions. We invariable favour some over others. James calls on the members of the church not to show favour on the basis of social class, making a fuss of the better off. Everyone is to be treated equally; in the context of worship there are to be no special seats for the more socially prominent.

The gospels strongly suggest that Jesus was not partial to people on the basis of social class. Indeed the portrait of Jesus we are given in the gospels suggest that he favoured the vulnerable, the poor, the weak, the defenceless. He was partial to the voiceless and the afflicted. Today’s gospel bears that out. A man who was deaf and had an impediment in his speech was brought to Jesus by his friends. In an oral culture where people were largely illiterate, not to be able to hear or speak properly was an enormous liability. Those who could neither hear nor speak were invisible; they could not be communicated with in any meaningful way and they could not communicate. This man was fortunate to have people who cared enough about him to bring him to Jesus who had a reputation for giving new life to the broken. The personal attention that Jesus goes on to give this man is striking. He takes the man away from the crowd, so that the two of them could be alone. Although the man cannot hear or speak, he can experience the sense of touch, and so Jesus touches the man’s ears, putting his finger into them, and touches the man’s tongue with his own spittle. Jesus also looked up to heaven, in prayer; it was Jesus’ relationship with the Father that would bring new life to this man. Jesus invests himself in a very personal and tactile way with this man’s healing. It is worth noting that this man was a pagan, not a Jew. The Decapolis where the healing story is set, was a predominantly pagan region. Jesus favoured the voiceless and the afflicted, whether they were Jew or pagan.

If, as people who have been baptised into Christ, we are to have favourites, they are to be the voiceless, the afflicted, the vulnerable and the weak. The friends of the man in the gospel can be our inspiration in that regard. They brought the man to Jesus, and, in so doing, they opened him up to a whole new life, a life that was richer and fuller than he had ever known. They were strength in his weakness. Their voice, their speaking to Jesus on his behalf, led to him coming to have a voice of his own.


I believe in God, the Father almighty,

creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,

who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,

born of the Virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontius Pilate,

was crucified, died, and was buried;

he descended to the dead.

On the third day he rose again;

He ascended into heaven,

He is seated at the right hand of the Father,

And he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,

the holy catholic Church,

the communion of saints,

the forgiveness of sins,

the resurrection of the body,

and the life everlasting. Amen.


For a spirit of listening: that God will free us from the noise that blocks our ability to hear the Word of God, prepare our hearts to receive that Word, and help us to put God’s vision for tomorrow into practice today.

For a deepening of compassion for others: that we may feel the pain and the longings of the poor, the physically and mentally challenged, and of the marginalized so that we may accompany them on their life’s journey.

For a spirit of welcome and hospitality in our churches: that all who join us may experience the love of Christ and a warm welcome.

For all who have experienced abuse, discrimination, or hatred: that God will heal their pain and renew their spirits.

For all who work with the poor and homeless: that they may continually see Christ in all whom they meet.

For all world leaders: that they recognize the dignity of all people regardless of status, wealth, or social position and seek to meet the basic needs of every person.

For those fleeing violence, particularly the people of Afghanistan: that God will protect those in danger, lead them to places of safety, and help them to find a warm welcome in their new communities

We ask Mary to pray with us, as we with her bring our care and concern for the situation in which we find ourselves

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee,

blessed art thou among women,

and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.

Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now,

and at the hour of our death.

Today and all days embrace us in a love that knows no end. Today and all days fill us with a power that overcomes. Today and all days encourage us with a word that nourishes. Today and all days inspire us with a hope that sustains. Today and all days comfort us with a peace that endures. Today and all days bring wholeness of body, mind and spirit Today and all days. Amen.


At the Saviour’s command

and formed by divine teaching, we dare to say:

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name;

thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth

as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread,

and forgive us our trespasses,

as we forgive those who trespass against us;

and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Deliver us, Lord, we pray, from every evil,

graciously grant peace in our days,

that, by the help of your mercy,

we may be always free from sin

and safe from all distress,

as we await the blessed hope

and the coming of our Saviour, Jesus Christ.

For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours

now and for ever.

Lord Jesus Christ, who said to your Apostles:

Peace I leave you, my peace I give you,

look not on our sins,

but on the faith of your Church,

and graciously grant her peace and unity

in accordance with your will.

Who live and reign for ever and ever. Amen.

Time to sit quietly to receive the Lord’s Presence


“My Jesus, I believe that You are present

in the Most Holy Sacrament of the altar.

I love You above all things,

and I desire to receive You into my soul.

Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally,

come at least spiritually into my heart …

I embrace You as if You were already there

and unite myself wholly to You.

Never permit me to be separated from You,”


Father, I abandon myself into your hands;

do with me what you will.

Whatever you may do, I thank you:

I am ready for all, I accept all.

Let only your will be done in me,

and in all your creatures—

I wish no more than this, O Lord.

Into your hands I commend my soul;

I offer it to you with all the love of my heart,

for I love you, Lord, and so need to give myself,

to surrender myself into your hands without reserve,

and with boundless confidence,

for you are my Father.

Charles de Foucauld.

THE BLESSING for ourselves, and all for whom we pray:

Let us go into the world with no debt but love, Let us go into the world with no law but love, Let us go into the world with no prayer but love, and the Father will be with us;

Christ will be in us; and the Holy Spirit will be around us;

And may the blessing of Almighty God, the Father,

the Son, ✠ and the Holy Spirit, come down upon us

all, and remain with us for ever. Amen.


The angel of the Lord brought tidings unto Mary. And she conceived by the Holy Ghost.

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women

and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now,

and at the hour of our death.

Behold the handmaid of the Lord. Be it unto me according to thy word.

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women

and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now,

and at the hour of our death.

And the Word was made flesh. And dwelt amongst us.

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women

and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now,

and at the hour of our death.

Pray for us, O holy Mother of God. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

We beseech thee, O Lord, pour thy grace into our hearts,

that as we have known the Incarnation of thy Son Jesus Christ by the message of an angel, so by his Cross and Passion

we may be brought unto the glory of his Resurrection;

through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Let us bless the Lord.

Thanks be to God!

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