Thursday of the Fourth Week of Lent
+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
Opening sentence and prayer:
Whatever we do or say, let us do it in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.
Father, give me that faith which gives substance to my hope, and make me certain of realities I do not see. You have given man authority over the work of Your hands and invited him to share in Your creation: help me to accept my responsibility by working for Your glory and the good of all mankind. May I accept all that You give me, and care for those entrusted to me. 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: 2 Samuel 7:4-5a, 12-14a, 16 (NLT)
But that same night the Lord said to Nathan,
“Go and tell my servant David, ‘This is what the Lord has declared: Are you the one to build a house for me to live in?
For when you die and are buried with your ancestors, I will raise up one of your descendants, your own offspring, and I will make his kingdom strong. He is the one who will build a house — a temple — for my name. And I will secure his royal throne forever. I will be his father, and he will be my son.
Your house and your kingdom will continue before me for all time, and your throne will be secure forever.’
Blessed are those who dwell in your house, O Lord; they never cease to praise you. (Psalm 84:5)
A Reading from the Gospels: Luke 2:41-51a (NLT)
Every year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the Passover festival. When Jesus was twelve years old, they attended the festival as usual. After the celebration was over, they started home to Nazareth, but Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem. His parents didn’t miss him at first, because they assumed he was among the other travelers. But when he didn’t show up that evening, they started looking for him among their relatives and friends.
When they couldn’t find him, they went back to Jerusalem to search for him there. Three days later they finally discovered him in the Temple, sitting among the religious teachers, listening to them and asking questions. All who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers.
His parents didn’t know what to think. “Son,” his mother said to him, “why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been frantic, searching for you everywhere.”
“But why did you need to search?” he asked. “Didn’t you know that I must be in my Father’s house?” But they didn’t understand what he meant.
Then he returned to Nazareth with them and was obedient to them. And his mother stored all these things in her heart.
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