August 20

Memorial of St. Bernard, Abbot and Doctor of the Church

St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Abbot and Doctor of the Church (†1153 Langres – France).
At age 22, together with a group of 30 other men made up of friends and relatives, he entered the monastery of Citaux. His superior, St. Stephen Harding later sent him to found a new monastery in Clairvaux, where he brought about the great Cistercian reform, favoured with great growth. He was a counselor of kings and Popes, and was renowned for his inspired preaching and writing, which earned him the title the Mellifluous Doctor. On his contribution to the Salve Regina, see: Queen, Mother and Advocate of Sinners.

Mass Readings

Other featured Saints

Blessed Maria Climent Mateu, virgin and martyr (†1936). Franciscan tertiary shot to death during the Spanish Civil War

St. Philibert, abbot (†c. 684). Educated at the court of King Dagobert; he became a monk while still an adolescent. He founded and directed the abbeys of Jumièges and Noirmoutier, in France.

St. Bernard Tolomei, abbot (†1348). Founder of the Benedictine Congregation of the Blessed Virgin of Monte Oliveto, he went to Siena, Italy, to assist his monks during an epidemic and died from the disease.

Blessed Maria Climent Mateu, virgin and martyr (†1936). Third Order Franciscan dedicated to the lay apostolate, killed by firing squad for her Faith during the Spanish Civil War.

St. Samuel, prophet. Called by God as a child; judge of Israel. He anointed Saul as king, who was unfaithful, and later anointed David, of whose lineage Jesus was born.

St. Maria de Mattias, virgin (†1866). Disciple of St. Gaspar del Bufalo, she founded the Congregation of the Sisters Adorers of the Most Precious Blood of Christ in Rome.

St. Maximus, monk (†fifth century). Disciple of St. Martin of Tours and monk in the Abbey of Île-Barbe (in Lyon, France). He founded a monastery near Chinon, where he spent the rest of his life.

Mass Readings

First Reading – Ru 1:1, 3-6, 14b-16, 22

Once in the time of the judges there was a famine in the land; so a man from Bethlehem of Judah departed with his wife and two sons to reside on the plateau of Moab. Elimelech, the husband of Naomi, died, and she was left with her two sons, who married Moabite women, one named Orpah, the other Ruth. When they had lived there about ten years, both Mahlon and Chilion died also, and the woman was left with neither her two sons nor her husband. She then made ready to go back from the plateau of Moab because word reached her there that the LORD had visited his people and given them food. Orpah kissed her mother-in-law good-bye, but Ruth stayed with her. Naomi said, “See now! Your sister-in-law has gone back to her people and her god. Go back after your sister-in-law!” But Ruth said, “Do not ask me to abandon or forsake you! For wherever you go, I will go, wherever you lodge I will lodge, your people shall be my people, and your God my God.” Thus it was that Naomi returned with the Moabite daughter-in-law, Ruth, who accompanied her back from the plateau of Moab. They arrived in Bethlehem at the beginning of the barley harvest.

Responsorial Psalm – 146:5-6ab, 6c-7, 8-9a, 9bc-10 (R.1b)

R. Praise the Lord, my soul!
Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the LORD, his God,
Who made heaven and earth,
the sea and all that is in them. R.

The LORD keeps faith forever,
secures justice for the oppressed,
gives food to the hungry.
The LORD sets captives free. R.

The LORD gives sight to the blind.
The LORD raises up those who were bowed down;
The LORD loves the just.
The LORD protects strangers. R.

The fatherless and the widow he sustains,
but the way of the wicked he thwarts.
The LORD shall reign forever;
your God, O Zion, through all generations. Alleluia. R.

Gospel – Mt 22:34-40

When the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees,
they gathered together, and one of them,
a scholar of the law, tested him by asking,
“Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?”
He said to him,
“You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart,
with all your soul, and with all your mind.
This is the greatest and the first commandment.
The second is like it:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments.”


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