Solemnity of the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ
Commentary on the Mass during the night, by Msgr. João Scognamiglio Clá Dias, EP.
Commentary on the Mass at Dawn, by Msgr. João Scognamiglio Clá Dias, EP.
St. Eugenia, martyr († third or fourth century). She received the crown of martyrdom in Rome
St. Albert Chmielowski, religious (†1916). Having studied painting in Paris, he abandoned the aristocratic milieu he frequented and founded the Congregation of the Brothers of the Third Order of St. Francis, Servants of the Poor.
Beato Bentivoglio, priest (†1232). In his youth, he met St. Francis of Assisi and followed him, disposing of all the wealth he possessed. He was a dedicated preacher and much sought as a confessor.
Blessed Michael Nakashima, religious and martyr (†1628). Japanese Jesuit catechist who was martyred for his Faith by being scalded to death.
Blessed Peter the Venerable, abbot (†1156). Governed the Monastery of Cluny, France with evangelical prudence and wisdom, reestablishing the ancient discipline.
Maria Therese of the Apostles von Wüllenweber, virgin (†1907). Of German origin, she founded the Sisters of the Divine Saviour (Salvatorian Sisters) in Tivoli, Italy.
Blessed Antonia Maria Verna, virgin (†1838). Foundress of the Congregation of the Sisters of Charity of the Immaculate Conception of Ivrea in Turin, Italy.
First Reading – Is 62:1-5
For Zion’s sake I will not be silent, for Jerusalem’s sake I will not be quiet, until her vindication shines forth like the dawn and her victory like a burning torch.
Nations shall behold your vindication, and all the kings your glory; you shall be called by a new name pronounced by the mouth of the LORD. You shall be a glorious crown in the hand of the LORD, a royal diadem held by your God. No more shall people call you “Forsaken,” or your land “Desolate,” but you shall be called “My Delight,” and your land “Espoused.” For the LORD delights in you and makes your land his spouse. As a young man marries a virgin, your Builder shall marry you; and as a bridegroom rejoices in his bride so shall your God rejoice in you.
Responsorial Psalm – Ps 89:4-5, 16-17, 27, 29 (R. 2a)
R. For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord.
I have made a covenant with my chosen one,
I have sworn to David my servant:
Forever will I confirm your posterity
and establish your throne for all generations R.
Blessed the people who know the joyful shout;
in the light of your countenance, O LORD, they walk.
At your name they rejoice all the day,
and through your justice they are exalted. R.
He shall say of me, “You are my father,
my God, the rock, my savior.”
Forever I will maintain my kindness toward him,
and my covenant with him stands firm. R.
Second Reading – Acts 13:16-17, 22-25
When Paul reached Antioch in Pisidia and entered the synagogue, he stood up, motioned with his hand, and said, “Fellow Israelites and you others who are God-fearing, listen. The God of this people Israel chose our ancestors and exalted the people during their sojourn in the land of Egypt. With uplifted arm he led them out of it. Then he removed Saul and raised up David as king; of him he testified, ‘I have found David, son of Jesse, a man after my own heart; he will carry out my every wish.’ From this man’s descendants God, according to his promise, has brought to Israel a savior, Jesus. John heralded his coming by proclaiming a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel; and as John was completing his course, he would say, ‘What do you suppose that I am? I am not he. Behold, one is coming after me; I am not worthy to unfasten the sandals of his feet.’”
Gospel – Mt 1:1-25 or 1:18-25
[The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ,
the son of David, the son of Abraham.
Abraham became the father of Isaac,
Isaac the father of Jacob,
Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers.
Judah became the father of Perez and Zerah,
whose mother was Tamar.
Perez became the father of Hezron,
Hezron the father of Ram,
Ram the father of Amminadab.
Amminadab became the father of Nahshon,
Nahshon the father of Salmon,
Salmon the father of Boaz,
whose mother was Rahab.
Boaz became the father of Obed,
whose mother was Ruth.
Obed became the father of Jesse,
Jesse the father of David the king.
David became the father of Solomon,
whose mother had been the wife of Uriah.
Solomon became the father of Rehoboam,
Rehoboam the father of Abijah,
Abijah the father of Asaph.
Asaph became the father of Jehoshaphat,
Jehoshaphat the father of Joram,
Joram the father of Uzziah.
Uzziah became the father of Jotham,
Jotham the father of Ahaz,
Ahaz the father of Hezekiah.
Hezekiah became the father of Manasseh,
Manasseh the father of Amos,
Amos the father of Josiah.
Josiah became the father of Jechoniah and his brothers
at the time of the Babylonian exile.
After the Babylonian exile,
Jechoniah became the father of Shealtiel,
Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel,
Zerubbabel the father of Abiud.
Abiud became the father of Eliakim,
Eliakim the father of Azor,
Azor the father of Zadok.
Zadok became the father of Achim,
Achim the father of Eliud,
Eliud the father of Eleazar.
Eleazar became the father of Matthan,
Matthan the father of Jacob,
Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary.
Of her was born Jesus who is called the Christ.
Thus the total number of generations
from Abraham to David
is fourteen generations;
from David to the Babylonian exile,
from the Babylonian exile to the Christ,
This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about.
When his mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph,
but before they lived together,
she was found with child through the Holy Spirit.
Joseph her husband, since he was a righteous man,
yet unwilling to expose her to shame,
decided to divorce her quietly.
Such was his intention when, behold,
the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said,
“Joseph, son of David,
do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home.
For it is through the Holy Spirit
that this Child has been conceived in her.
She will bear a Son and you are to name Him Jesus,
because He will save his people from their sins.”
All this took place to fulfill
what the Lord had said through the prophet:
Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son,
and they shall name him Emmanuel,
which means “God is with us.”
When Joseph awoke,
he did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him
and took his wife into his home.
He had no relations with her until she bore a Son,
and he named Him Jesus.
First Reading – Is 9:1-6
The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; upon those who dwelt in the land of gloom a light has shone. You have brought them abundant joy and great rejoicing, as they rejoice before you as at the harvest, as people make merry when dividing spoils. For the yoke that burdened them, the pole on their shoulder, and the rod of their taskmaster you have smashed, as on the day of Midian. For every boot that tramped in battle, every cloak rolled in blood, will be burned as fuel for flames. For a child is born to us, a son is given us; upon his shoulder dominion rests. They name him Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, Prince of Peace. His dominion is vast and forever peaceful, from David’s throne, and over his Kingdom, which He confirms and sustains by judgment and justice, both now and forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this!
Responsorial Psalm – Ps96: 1-2, 2-3, 11-12, 13. (R. Lk 2:11)
R. Today is born our Savior, Christ the Lord.
Sing to the LORD a new song;
sing to the LORD, all you lands.
Sing to the LORD; bless his name.R.
Announce his salvation, day after day.
Tell his glory among the nations;
among all peoples, his wondrous deeds. R.
Let the heavens be glad and the earth rejoice;
let the sea and what fills it resound;
let the plains be joyful and all that is in them!
Then shall all the trees of the forest exult. R.
They shall exult before the LORD, for He comes;
for He comes to rule the earth.
He shall rule the world with justice
and the peoples with his constancy. R.
Second Reading – Ti 2:11-14
The grace of God has appeared, saving all and training us to reject godless ways and worldly desires and to live temperately, justly, and devoutly in this age, as we await the blessed hope, the appearance of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us to deliver us from all lawlessness and to cleanse for himself a people as his own, eager to do what is good.
Gospel – Lk 2:1-14
In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that the whole world should be enrolled. This was the first enrollment, when Quirinius was governor of Syria. So all went to be enrolled, each to his own town. And Joseph too went up from Galilee from the town of Nazareth to Judea, to the city of David that is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, to be enrolled with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. While they were there, the time came for her to have her child, and she gave birth to her firstborn Son. She wrapped Him in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. Now there were shepherds in that region living in the fields and keeping the night watch over their flock. The angel of the Lord appeared to them and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were struck with great fear. The angel said to them,
“Do not be afraid; for behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For today in the city of David
a Savior has been born for you who is Christ and Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find an infant wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was a multitude of the heavenly host with the angel, praising God and saying:
“Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
First Reading – Is 62:11-12
See, the LORD proclaims to the ends of the earth: say to daughter Zion, your Savior comes! Here is his reward with Him, his recompense before Him. They shall be called the holy people, the redeemed of the LORD, and you shall be called “Frequented,” a city that is not forsaken.
Responsorial Psalm – Ps 97:1, 6, 11-12
R. A light will shine on us this day: the Lord is born for us.
The LORD is King; let the earth rejoice;
let the many isles be glad.
The heavens proclaim his justice,
and all peoples see his glory. R.
Light dawns for the just;
and gladness, for the upright of heart.
Be glad in the LORD, you just,
and give thanks to his holy name. R.
Second Reading – Ti 3:4-7
Beloved: When the kindness and generous love of God our Savior appeared, not because of any righteous deeds we had done but because of his mercy, He saved us through the bath of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom He richly poured out on us through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that we might be justified by his grace and become heirs in hope of eternal life.
Gospel – Lk 2:15-20
When the angels went away from them to heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go, then, to Bethlehem to see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.” So they went in haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known the message that had been told them about this Child. All who heard it were amazed by what had been told them by the shepherds. And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart. Then the shepherds returned,
glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, just as it had been told to them.
First Reading – Is 52:7-10
How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings glad tidings, announcing peace, bearing good news, announcing salvation, and saying to Zion, “Your God is King!”
Hark! Your sentinels raise a cry, together they shout for joy, for they see directly, before their eyes, the LORD restoring Zion. Break out together in song, O ruins of Jerusalem! For the LORD comforts his people, he redeems Jerusalem. The LORD has bared his holy arm in the sight of all the nations; all the ends of the earth will behold the salvation of our God.
Responsorial Psalm – Ps 98:1, 2-3, 3-4, 5-6. (R. 3c)
R. All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God.
Sing to the LORD a new song,
for He has done wondrous deeds;
his right hand has won victory for Him,
his holy arm. R.
The LORD has made his salvation known:
in the sight of the nations He has revealed his justice.
He has remembered his kindness and his faithfulness
toward the house of Israel. R.
All the ends of the earth have seen
the salvation by our God.
Sing joyfully to the LORD, all you lands;
break into song; sing praise. R.
Sing praise to the LORD with the harp,
with the harp and melodious song.
With trumpets and the sound of the horn
sing joyfully before the King, the LORD. R.
Second Reading – Heb 1:1-6
Brothers and sisters: In times past, God spoke in partial and various ways to our ancestors through the prophets; in these last days, he has spoken to us through the Son, whom He made heir of all things and through whom He created the universe, who is the refulgence of his glory, the very imprint of his being, and who sustains all things by his mighty word. When He had accomplished purification from sins, He took his seat at the right hand of the Majesty on high, as far superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs. For to which of the angels did God ever say: You are my son; this day I have begotten you? Or again: I will be a father to him, and he shall be a son to me? And again, when he leads the firstborn into the world, he says: Let all the angels of God worship Him.
Gospel – Jn 1:1-18 or 1:1-5, 9-14
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came to be through Him, and without Him nothing came to be. What came to be through Him was life, and this life was the light of the human race; the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. [A man named John was sent from God. He came for testimony, to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He was not the light, but came to testify to the light.] The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world came to be through Him, but the world did not know Him. He came to what was his own, but his own people did not accept Him. But to those who did accept Him He gave power to become children of God, to those who believe in his name, who were born not by natural generation
nor by human choice nor by a man’s decision but of God. And the Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us, and we saw his glory, the glory as of the Father’s only Son, full of grace and truth. [John testified to Him and cried out, saying, “This was He of whom I said,
‘The one who is coming after me ranks ahead of me because He existed before me.’” From his fullness we have all received, grace in place of grace, because while the law was given through Moses, grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God. The only Son, God, who is at the Father’s side, has revealed Him.]