Carissimi: Sunday’s Mass; Sunday XVII Post Pentecost

PostPentXVIISunday XVII Post Pentecost; St Eustace & Companion Martyrs: Missa “Iustus es, Domine

The liturgy reminds us today of the great commandment of charity towards God and our neighbor. “The precept is twofold,” declares St. Augustine, “but charity is one.” We love God above all and our neighbor for His sake. The unity of our faith, like the unity of the Persons of the Most Holy Trinity is the message of the Epistle and the Gospel imposes on us the duty of being united in the bonds of charity.

St Eustace & Companion Martyrs; AT THE beginning of the second century, during the reign of Emperor Trajan, there lived in Rome a famous general by the name of Placidus, who was distinguished among his fellow citizens for his wealth and military prowess. It happened one day, that while following the chase he became separated from his companions, and was pursuing with eagerness a stag of extraordinary size, when suddenly it turned toward him, and he beheld raised aloft between its antlers the image of Jesus Christ suspended on the Cross. At the same time our blessed Savior addressed him in loving words, inviting him henceforth to follow Him by embracing the Christian faith, and to make eternal life in future the object of his pursuit.

Faithful to the grace which he had received, Placidus on his return home communicated the Heavenly vision to his wife Tatiana, who informed him that she too had been favoured with a Heavenly apparition. Together they went immediately to the Pope, related their experience, and after due instruction received Baptism.

At the sacred font Placidus received the name of Eustachius, and his wife was called Theopista, while his sons were Baptised by the names of Agapitus and Theopistus.

Upon returning to the spot where he first received the call, Eustachius was favoured with another communication from Our Lord, announcing to him that he was destined to endure many and great afflictions for the sake of Christ. It was not long before his faith and patience were put to a severe trial. Stripped of all his possessions and forced to flee from the fury of the persecution, he was reduced to extreme distress, and in the course of his wanderings was by a series of calamitous events separated from his wife and children, of whom he lost all trace. For many years he dwelt in a remote spot, following the occupation of a farm laborer, until he was found by the messengers of the emperor, who was sadly in need of the skill of his former general, because a fierce war had broken out, in which the Romans sustained severe losses.

Being again invested with the command of the imperial troops, Eustachius set out for the seat of war, and achieved a decisive victory. In the course of his march he had the happiness, by a singular providence of God, to recover his wife and children, with whom he returned to Rome. His entrance into the city was attended with great rejoicings, and many were the congratulations which he received on his extraordinary good fortune. But soon afterward a solemn sacrifice of thanksgiving to the pagan deities was proclaimed, in which he was ordered by the emperor to take a part. Upon his refusal, after every effort had been made to shake his constancy, he was condemned to be exposed to the lions in the public amphitheater along with his wife and children. Finally, as the savage animals, laying aside their natural ferocity, refused to injure the confessors of Christ, Eustachius and his family were by order of the emperor enclosed in the body of an immense brazen bull, which was heated by means of a great fire enkindled beneath. The last moments of these heroic Martyrs was spent in chanting the Divine Praises, in the midst of which their happy souls passed to the enjoyment of everlasting bliss. Their bodies, miraculously preserved uninjured, were buried with great devotion by the faithful Christians, and were afterward transferred to a magnificent church erected in their honour.

INTROIT Psalm 118:137; 118:124

You are just, O Lord, and Your ordinance is right. Deal with Your servant according to Your kindness. Happy are they whose way is blameless, who walk in the law of the Lord. V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost. R. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen


Grant, we beseech You, O Lord, that Your people may avoid the temptations of the devil, and with pure minds follow You, the only God. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end.
R. Amen.

Commemoration of S. Eustachius & Co
O God, who dost permit us to keep the birthday of thy holy Martyrs Eustache and his companions, grant that we may enjoy their fellowship in everlasting happiness

Pro Vigiliae St Matthei Apostoli
Grant, we beseech thee, Almighty God, that the worshipful Feast of thy blessed Apostle and Evangeliste S. Matthew on the eve whereof we now stand, may avail us to the increase both of godliness toward thee, and of health to our own souls. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. R. Amen.

EPISTLE Ephesians 4:1-6

Lesson from the letter of St Paul the Apostle to the Ephesians. Brethren: I, the prisoner in the Lord, exhort you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all humility and meekness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, careful to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace: one body and one Spirit, even as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one Baptism, one God and Father of all, Who is above all, and throughout all, and in us all, Who is blessed forever and ever. Amen.

GRADUAL/ALLELUIA Psalm 32:12; 32:6

Happy the nation whose God is the Lord, the people the Lord has chosen for His own inheritance. V. By the word of the Lord the heavens were made; by the breath of His mouth all their host. Alleluia, alleluia. Ps 101:2 V. O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to You. Alleluia.

GOSPEL Matt 22:34-46

At that time, the Pharisees came to Jesus and one of them, a doctor of the Law, putting Him to the test, asked Him, Master, which is the great commandment in the Law? Jesus said to him, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart, and with your whole soul, and with your whole mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And the second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets. Now while the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus questioned them, saying, What do you think of the Christ? Whose son is He? They said to Him, David’s. He said to them, How then does David in the spirit call Him Lord, saying, The Lord said to my Lord: Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool?’ If David, therefore, calls Him ‘Lord,’ how is He his son? And no one could answer Him a word; neither did anyone dare from that day forth to ask Him any more questions.


I, Daniel, prayed to my God, saying, Hear, O Lord, the prayers of Your servant; show Your face upon Your sanctuary, and favorably look down upon this people, upon whom Your name is invoked, O God.


O Lord, we humbly pray Your majesty that the holy rite which we are celebrating may free us from past and future sins. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. R. Amen.

Commemoration of S. Eustachius & Co
We present to thee, O Lord, these gifts for our sacrifice, as honoring thy holy ones may they please thee, and of thy pity, may they become profitable to us.

Pro Vigiliae St Matthei Apostoli
Offering to thee these holy mysteries with reverence for the high dignity of the Apostleship, we beseech thee, O LOrd that thropugh the prayers of blessed Matthew, thy Apostle and Evangelist, to whose feast we look forward , thy people ever may set forth their desires before thee and gain what they seek. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. R. Amen.

PREFACE of the Holy Trinity

It it truly meet and just, right and for our salvation, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, everlasting God; Who, together with Thine only-begotten Son, and the Holy Ghost, art one God, one Lord: not in the oneness of a single Person, but in the Trinity of one substance. For what we believe by Thy revelation of Thy glory, the same do we believe of Thy Son, the same of the Holy Ghost, without difference or separation. So that in confessing the true and everlasting Godhead, distinction in persons, unity in essence, and equality in majesty may be adored. Which the Angels and Archangels, the Cherubim also and Seraphim do praise: who cease not daily to cry out, with one voice saying:


Make vows to the Lord, your God, and fulfill them; let all round about Him bring gifts to the terrible Lord Who checks the pride of princes, Who is terrible to the kings of the earth.


By the workings of Your sanctifying power, almighty God, may our vices be cured and eternal remedies provided for us. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. R. Amen.

Commemoration of S. Eustachius & Co
Grant, we beseech You, O almighty and merciful God, that through the intercession of Your holy Martyrs, N. et N. what we take into our mouths we may eat with pure heart.

Pro Vigiliae St Matthei Apostoli
Be appease, we beseech thee, O Lord, by the prayers of thy holy Apostle and Evangelist, Matthew, and grant us pardon and unfailing remedies. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. R. Amen.