Wednesday of the 4th Week of Advent
St. Frances Xavier Cabrini, virgin (†1917). Foundress of the Institute of the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Of Italian origin, she died in the United States, where she had cared for immigrants with outstanding charity (USA: Celebrated as Memorial on Nov. 13)
St. Hungerus, bishop (†866). Zealous pastor of the Diocese of Utrecht, Holland, at a time of upheaval due to Norman invasions.
St. Chaeremon, Bishop of Nilopolis (Egypt), and companions martyrs (†250). They received the crown of martyrdom while the persecution of the Emperor Decius was raging.
St. Ischyrion, martyr (†250). In Alexandria under Emperor Decius, after despising the cruelties heaped upon him to force him to sacrifice to idols, he was finally put to death, impaled by a sharp stake.
Blessed Thomas Holland, priest and martyr (†1642). Jesuit, executed by hanging in the time of Charles I, for exercising his priestly ministry in England.
First Reading – 1 Sm 1:24-28
In those days, Hannah brought Samuel with her, along with a three-year-old bull, an ephah of flour, and a skin of wine, and presented him at the temple of the LORD in Shiloh. After the boy’s father had sacrificed the young bull, Hannah, his mother, approached Eli and said: “Pardon, my lord! As you live, my lord, I am the woman who stood near you here, praying to the LORD.I prayed for this child, and the LORD granted my request. Now I, in turn, give him to the LORD; as long as he lives, he shall be dedicated to the LORD.” She left Samuel there.
Responsorial Psalm – 1 Sam 2:1, 4-5, 6-7, 8 abcd (R. cf. 1a)
R. My heart exults in the Lord, my Savior.
“My heart exults in the LORD,
my horn is exalted in my God.
I have swallowed up my enemies;
I rejoice in my victory.” R.
“The bows of the mighty are broken,
while the tottering gird on strength.
The well-fed hire themselves out for bread,
while the hungry batten on spoil.
The barren wife bears seven sons,
while the mother of many languishes.” R.
“The LORD puts to death and gives life;
He casts down to the nether world;
He raises up again.
The LORD makes poor and makes rich,
He humbles, he also exalts.” R.
“He raises the needy from the dust;
from the dung heap He lifts up the poor,
To seat them with nobles
and make a glorious throne their heritage.”R.
Gospel – Lk 1:46-56
Mary said: “My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord;
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.
for He has looked upon his lowly servant.
From this day all generations will call me blessed:
the Almighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear Him
in every generation.
He has shown the strength of his arm,
and has scattered the proud in their conceit.
He has cast down the mighty from their thrones
and has lifted up the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich He has sent away empty.
He has come to the help of his servant Israel
for He remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise He made to our fathers,
to Abraham and his children for ever.”
Mary remained with Elizabeth about three months
and then returned to her home.