Saturday of the First Week of Lent
+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
Opening sentence and prayer:
Pray for those who persecute you and for those who treat you badly: in this way you will be sons of your Father in heaven, says the Lord.
Jesus, You are gentle and humble in spirit; grant me something of Your pity, something of Your kindness and something of Your patience towards all men. Teach me to be a neighbour to the sad and the needy; let me imitate You, the good Samaritan. Grant me the gift of Your mercy, pardon my sins and save me from punishment. Renew me, Lord, by Your grace.
Turn my heart to Yourself, eternal Father, so that, always seeking the one thing necessary and devoting myself to acts of KIndness, I may worship You in spirit and in truth. Through my Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
A Reading from the Old Testament: Deuteronomy 26:16-19 (NLT)
“Today the Lord your God has commanded you to obey all these decrees and regulations. So be careful to obey them wholeheartedly. You have declared today that the Lord is your God. And you have promised to walk in his ways, and to obey his decrees, commands, and regulations, and to do everything he tells you. The Lord has declared today that you are his people, his own special treasure, just as he promised, and that you must obey all his commands. And if you do, he will set you high above all the other nations he has made. Then you will receive praise, honor, and renown. You will be a nation that is holy to the Lord your God, just as he promised.”
Behold, now is a very acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation. (2 Corinthians 6:2b)
A Reading from the Gospels: Matthew 5:43-48 (NLT)
“You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven. For he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike. If you love only those who love you, what reward is there for that? Even corrupt tax collectors do that much. If you are kind only to your friends, how are you different from anyone else? Even pagans do that. But you are to be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.
Christ, as a light illumine and guide me. Christ as a shield overshadow me. Christ under me; Christ over me; Christ beside me on my left and my right.
This day be within and without me, lowly and meek, yet all-powerful. Be in the heart of each to whom I speak; in the mouth of each who speaks unto me. This day be within and without me, lowly and meek, yet all-powerful.
Christ as a light; Christ as a shield; Christ beside me on my left and my right.
May the Lord Christ go with you, wherever He may send you. May He guide you through the wilderness, protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you. May He bring you home rejoicing once again into our doors.
+ In the Name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen