December 16

Thursday of the 3rd Week of Advent

Mass Readings

Prophet Haggai – Cathedral of St. Cecilia, Albí (France)

Featured Saints

Prophet Haggai. In the time of Zerubbabel, ruler of Judah, he exhorted the people to reconstruct the Temple.

St. Adelaide, empress (†999). A Burgundian princess who became the spouse of Holy Roman Emperor Otto I. She demonstrated great charity toward the indigent and contributed to the Church’s growth in the empire, building several churches and monasteries.

St. Ado of Vienne, bishop (†875) Of noble birth, he renounced the world and became a Benedictine monk. He wrote an updated Roman Martyrology, published in 858. He became the archbishop of Vienne, reforming the clergy there, and firmly opposing the unlawful remarriage of Lothair II, king of Lorraine.

St. Eberhard, confessor (†867). Duke of Friuli and important figure in the Holy Roman Empire. He founded a monastery of Canons Regular in Cysoing, France, to which his remains were transferred some years after his death.

Blessed Sebastian Maggi, priest (†1496). Italian Dominican religious and eminent theologian, he exercised the office of prior in several houses of his Order, striving to re-establish the observance as promoted by St. Catherine of Sienna and Blessed Raymond of Capua. He died at the monastery of Santa Maria di Castello in Genoa.

Blessed Honorat of Biala Podlaska, priest (†1916). Capuchin priest, he dedicated himself to administering the Sacrament of Penance, preaching the Gospel and consoling prisoners. He died in Nowe Miasto, Poland.

Blessed Clemente Marchisio, priest (†1903). Parish priest from Rivalba, Italy; he founded the Institute of the Daughters of St. Joseph.

Blessed Philip Siphong Onphitak, martyr (†1940). Lay catechist and father of a family and who was shot for his Faith during the religious persecution in Thailand.

Blessed­ Mary­ of­ the­ Angels Fontanella, virgin (†1717). At age 15 she entered the Carmel of Turin, Italy, and eventually became prioress. She left many writings on the spiritual life.

Mass Readings

First Reading – Is 54:1-10

I am the LORD, there is no other; I form the light, and create the darkness, I make well-being and create woe; Raise a glad cry, you barren one who did not bear,
Break forth in jubilant song, you who were not in labor,
For more numerous are the children of the deserted wife
than the children of her who has a husband,
says the LORD.
Enlarge the space for your tent,
spread out your tent cloths unsparingly;
lengthen your ropes and make firm your stakes.
For you shall spread abroad to the right and to the left;
your descendants shall dispossess the nations
and shall people the desolate cities.

Fear not, you shall not be put to shame;
you need not blush, for you shall not be disgraced.
The shame of your youth you shall forget,
the reproach of your widowhood no longer remember.
For he who has become your husband is your Maker;
his name is the LORD of hosts;
Your redeemer is the Holy One of Israel,
called God of all the earth.
The LORD calls you back,
like a wife forsaken and grieved in spirit,
A wife married in youth and then cast off,
says your God.
For a brief moment I abandoned you,
but with great tenderness I will take you back.
In an outburst of wrath, for a moment
I hid my face from you;
But with enduring love I take pity on you,
says the LORD, your redeemer.

This is for me like the days of Noah,
when I swore that the waters of Noah
should never again deluge the earth;
So I have sworn not to be angry with you,
or to rebuke you.
Though the mountains leave their place
and the hills be shaken,
My love shall never leave you
nor my covenant of peace be shaken,
says the LORD, who has mercy on you.

Responsorial Psalm – Ps 30:2 and 4, 5-6, 11-12a and 13b (R.2a)

R. I will praise You, Lord, for You have rescued me.

I will extol you, O LORD, for you drew me clear
and did not let my enemies rejoice over me.
O LORD, you brought me up from the nether world;
you preserved me from among those going down into the pit. R.

Sing praise to the LORD, you his faithful ones,
and give thanks to his holy name.
For his anger lasts but a moment;
a lifetime, his good will.
At nightfall, weeping enters in,
but with the dawn, rejoicing. R.

“Hear, O LORD, and have pity on me;
O LORD, be my helper.”
You changed my mourning into dancing;
O LORD, my God, forever will I give you thanks. R.

Gospel – Lk 7:24-30

When the messengers of John the Baptist had left,
Jesus began to speak to the crowds about John.
“What did you go out to the desert to see a reed swayed by the wind?
Then what did you go out to see?
Someone dressed in fine garments?
Those who dress luxuriously and live sumptuously
are found in royal palaces.
Then what did you go out to see?
A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet.
This is the one about whom Scripture says:

Behold, I am sending my messenger ahead of you,
he will prepare your way before you.

I tell you,
among those born of women, no one is greater than John;
yet the least in the Kingdom of God is greater than he.”
(All the people who listened, including the tax collectors,
who were baptized with the baptism of John,
acknowledged the righteousness of God;
but the Pharisees and scholars of the law,
who were not baptized by him,
rejected the plan of God for themselves.)


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