A light to lighten the Gentiles

Sermon by St Augustine, Bishop,

Sermon 128 on the Birth of Our Lord.

As it was foretold in former times, Sion our Mother saith: He was born in her, the Most High shall stablish her. O omnipotence of him that was born. O magnificence of him that descended from heaven to earth! While he was yet hidden in the womb, he was saluted by John Baptist from his mother’s womb. He was presented in the temple, and was recognized by Simeon, that old man honoured, hoary, esteemed and crowned.

Simeon, a just and devout man, awaited the consolation of Israel: And the Holy Ghost was upon him.

It was revealed unto Simeon by the Holy Ghost that he should not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And the…

Lesson V, Nocturn II, Matins of the Purification of St Mary the Virgin, Monastic Breviary.

Then he knew, then he adored, then he said: Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, for mine eyes have seen thy salvation. His departure from this world was put off until he had seen the birth of him who made the world. The old man recognized the infant, he was made a child in that Child: he became young in his old age, yet ripe in devotion. The aged Simeon carried the Infant Christ; yet Christ ruled the aged Simeon.

It was revealed unto Simeon by the Holy Ghost that he should not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And he blessed God, and said: Now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, for mine eyes have seen thy salvation, O Lord.

When the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him after the custom of the law, then took he up in his arms. And he blessed…

Lesson VI, ibid.

It was told him by the Lord, that he should not taste of death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. Christ was born, and the desire of the old man was accomplished in the old age of the world. He himself came to an old man, and found an aged world. The old man desired not to be long in this world, and yet he desired to see Christ in this world, saying with the prophet: O Lord, shew thy mercy upon us, and grant us thy salvation.

When his parents brought the child Jesus into the temple to do for him after the custom of the law, Simeon took him up in his arms and blessed God, and said: Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace.

Simeon took the child up in his arms and cried out, saying: Lord, now lettest…

Lesson VII, ibid.

And lastly, that ye may know how great this joy was, he finally said: Now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, for mine eyes have seen thy salvation. The prophets foretold that the Maker of heaven and earth should be with men upon earth; the Angel announced that the Creator of flesh and spirit should come in the flesh; John, from the womb, saluted the Saviour in the womb; the old man Simeon knew the Infant God.

Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according to thy word; For mine eyes have seen thy salvation.

A light to lighten the Gentiles, and to be the glory of thy people Israel. For mine eyes…

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.

For mine eyes have seen thy salvation.

Lesson VIII, ibid.

St Comgall, Abbot of Bangor – 10 May 2020

As well as being the Fourth Sunday after Easter, today in the NCC we commemorate St Comgall, Abbot of Bangor. He was born of noble parents between 510 and 520, and placed himself under the guidance of St Finian of Clonenagh, in Leinster. He then returned to Ulster where he founded a famous monastery at Bangor. For the guidance of his monks he wrote a rule of great austerity, which was long held in high esteem in Ireland. Many saintly men including St Columba were members of the community. He journeyed to Brittany, where he founded a monastery, but returned to Ireland where he ruled his monastery until his death in 602. The image shown is that of the Anglican parish church of Bangor Abbey.

Collect

We ask, Lord, through the intercession of blessed Comgall your Abbot: that what we are unable to achieve by our own merits we may accomplish through his protection. Through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Postcommunion

With the reception of your holy Sacrament, may your holy Abbot, Comgall protect us by his intercession: that we may share in his wondrous life, and receive the aid of his intercession. Through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

St Joseph the Worker – 1st May 2020

Please use these readings for reflection if you are not able to join in our Daily Mass.

Epistle

A reading from St Paul the Apostle to the Colossians, chapter 3: 14, 15, 17, 23, 24

Brethren, above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Whatever your task, put yourselves into it, as done for the Lord and not for your masters, since you know that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward; you serve the Lord Christ.

Gospel

Continuation of the holy Gospel according to St Matthew, chapter 13: 54–58

At that time, He came to his hometown and began to teach the people in their synagogue, so that they were astounded and said, “Where did this man get this wisdom and these deeds of power? Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother called Mary? And are not his brothers James and Joseph and Simon and Judas? And are not all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all this?” And they took offence at him. But Jesus said to them, “Prophets are not without honour except in their own country and in their own house.” And he did not do many deeds of power there, because of their unbelief.

Collect

O God, Creator of all things, who did lay on the human race the law of labour: graciously grant; that by following the example of St Joseph and under his patronage, we may carry out the work you command and obtain the reward you promise. Through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

Daily Rosary and Mass for Deliverance from the Coronavirus

In accordance with my call for daily Prayer of the Holy Rosary to pray for global deliverance from the Coronavirus pandemic, to pray for those who are sick and those who have sadly died, and to give thanks to Almighty God for the dedication and self-sacrifice of our front-line emergency workers and other key workers, I invite you all to join in a live-stream of the Holy Rosary direct from a member of the NCCUKI Clergy’s private Chapel or study each day at 6pm BST.

You are all invited to join in: will it be possible to have a Rosary Circle that spans the entire world?

The pattern will be:

Mondays and Thursdays – the Joyful Mysteries

Tuesdays and Fridays – the Sorrowful Mysteries

Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays – the Glorious Mysteries.

The Prayers will be recited in Latin, but the Fatima Prayer after each Decade will be in English. There will be a brief meditation on each Mystery from Fr Patrick Peyton, well known as “the Rosary Priest”.

On Mondays until Saturdays, following the Rosary, the Holy Sacrifice of The Mass will be live-streamed (Latin, Missale Romanum of 1962). There will be a pause between the Rosary and the start of Mass whilst the Celebrant vests; the live stream will stay on during this time so that you may make your private preparatory prayers before Mass before the “virtual Altar”. You are most welcome to stay online to hear Mass each day.

On Sundays, the Holy Sacrifice of The Mass will be live streamed at 11am BST, and following the daily Rosary at 6pm there will be Benediction.

The live streams – Rosary and Mass or Rosary and Benediction – will be on the NCC United Kingdom and Ireland Facebook Page (fb.com/NCCUKI) each weekday from just before 6pm or each Sunday from just before 11am starting on Tuesday 14th April 2020. I will arrange a rota between myself, Bishop Michael and Fr Simon OSMC to officiate and host the live stream. However, the live stream of Mass each Sunday morning and of the Rosary and Benediction each Sunday evening will be from my Chapel.

Unfortunately the technology is not at the moment available to us to be able to hear the responses of anybody else who is taking part: but that does not matter, Almighty God is able to hear all of us as we make our prayers to Him.

May God’s Blessings be with you, and may you all stay safe and well.

‡Petrus Angliæ et Cambriæ
Archiepiscopus Metropolitanus