or [Common of a Saint] [For Vocation in Daily Work] [For Social Service]

Preface of a Saint (2)

The Collect

Almighty God, by your grace your servant Elizabeth of Hungary recognized and honored Jesus in the poor of this world: Grant that we, following her example, may with love and gladness serve those in any need or trouble, in the name and for the sake of Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The First Lesson

Tobit 12:6b–9

Bless God and acknowledge him in the presence of all the living for the good things he has done for you. Bless and sing praise to God's name. With fitting honour declare to all people the deeds of God. Do not be slow to acknowledge him. It is good to conceal the secret of a king, but to acknowledge and reveal the works of God, and with fitting honour to acknowledge him. Do good, and evil will not overtake you. Prayer with fasting is good, but better than both is almsgiving with righteousness. A little with righteousness is better than wealth with wrongdoing. It is better to give alms than to lay up gold. For almsgiving saves from death and purges away every sin. Those who give alms will enjoy a full life.”

The Response

Psalm 109:20–25

Deus, laudem

20 But you, O Lord my God,
oh, deal with me according to your Name; *
for your tender mercy's sake, deliver me.

21 For I am poor and needy, *
and my heart is wounded within me.

22 I have faded away like a shadow when it lengthens; *
I am shaken off like a locust.

23 My knees are weak through fasting, *
and my flesh is wasted and gaunt.

24 I have become a reproach to them; *
they see and shake their heads.

25 Help me, O Lord my God; *
save me for your mercy's sake.

The Epistle

2 Corinthians 8:7–15

Now as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in utmost eagerness, and in our love for you—so we want you to excel also in this generous undertaking.

I do not say this as a command, but I am testing the genuineness of your love against the earnestness of others. For you know the generous act of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that by his poverty you might become rich. And in this matter I am giving my advice: it is appropriate for you who began last year not only to do something but even to desire to do something— now finish doing it, so that your eagerness may be matched by completing it according to your means. For if the eagerness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has—not according to what one does not have. I do not mean that there should be relief for others and pressure on you, but it is a question of a fair balance between your present abundance and their need, so that their abundance may be for your need, in order that there may be a fair balance. As it is written, “The one who had much did not have too much, and the one who had little did not have too little.”

The Gospel

Luke 6:35–38

Jesus said, “Love your enemies, do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return. Your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High; for he is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

“Do not judge, and you will not be judged; do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven; give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap; for the measure you give will be the measure you get back.”

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