The theme of the Eighth Sunday is to account for your stewardship before God and then man. In the Epistle we are reminded of our divine filiation, and Our Lord tells us in a parable in today’s Gospel of the duties thereby entailed. We are the children of God, since we may say in all truth: Our Father (Epistle). God has given us life, “wherefore we must life according to His will” (Collect).
Just as this rich landowner who, before giving his son his share of the heritage, wishes to test his administrative capability, by entrusting to him things of little value, God, before making us His heirs in Heaven, has wished to test our fidelity by giving us the management on earth of both temporal and spiritual goods. But, like the steward mentioned by Jesus, we have been unfaithful, dissipating by sin the riches and talents which God entrusted to us.
Therefore, vying in zeal with the children of the world, the sons of light imitate the foresight of the steward who, by means of his father’s riches, prepared friends unto himself. Turning to profitable use what God has given to us, let us do good, and especially by almsgiving let us secure the testimony which the poor will bear their benefactors at the moment when all will have to give an account of their stewardship to the divine Judge.
SS Abdon & Sennen: They were Persians who courageously confessed the faith of Christ in the persecution of Decius, ministering to their fellows and burying the bodies of the martyrs. They were brought to Rome as prisoners, refused to sacrifice, and spat upon the images of the gods, wherefore they were exposed to the beasts; as neither lions nor bears would touch them they were hewn into pieces by gladiators. But the more their bodies were mangled and covered with wounds the more were their souls adorned and beautified with divine grace, and rendered glorious in the sight of Heaven. The Christians at Rome did not treat them as strangers, but as brethren united to them in the hope of the same country; and their bodies were buried by night at the house of a subdeacon called Quirinus. In the reign of Constantine their relics were removed to the burying-place of Pontian (called also, from some sign, the “Bear and Cap” Ad Ursum Pileatum), situated near the Tiber on the road to Porto; this translation took place in consequence of a vision wherein the martyrs revealed their place of burial. These particulars are derived from their late and unreliable “acts”, but the veneration of SS. Abdon and Sennen in Rome can be traced back to the fourth century.
INTROIT Psalm 47: 10-11
We have received, 0 God, Thy Mercy in the midst of Thy temple to Thy Name, O God, so also is Thy praise unto the according ends of the earth Thy right hand is full of justice. (Ps. 47: 2) Great is the Lond, and exceedingly to be pra/meÓ, in the city of God, in His holy mountain. v. Glory be…etc
Be Thou, O Lord, the sanctifier, and the guardian of Thy people, so that, being defended by the protection of Thine apostle James, they may both please Thee by their conduct and serve Thee with mind all untroubled. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, Forever and ever.
Commemoratio S. Abdon et Senen Martyrum
O God, Who bestowed upon Your Saints, Abdon and Sennen, an abundance of grace to bring them to this glory; grant to Your servants forgiveness of their sins, so they may be found worthy to be freed from all harm through the interceding merits of Your saints.
Collect for the Intercession of the Saints
Defend us, we beseech Thee, O Lord, from all dangers of mind and body: and through the intercession of the blessed and glorious Mary, ever Virgin, mother of God, of St Joseph, of Thy holy apostles, Peter and Paul, and of all the saints, in Thy loving-kindness grant us safety and peace; that, all adversities and errors being overcome, Thy Church may serve Thee in security and freedom. Through our Lord.
Collect for God’s Holy Church
Graciously hear, O Lord, the prayers of Thy Church that, having overcome all adversity and every error, she may serve Thee in security and freedom. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, Forever and ever.
EPISTLE Romans 8: 12-17
Lesson from the Epistle of Blessed Paul the Apostle to the Romans, We are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh; for if you live according to the flesh, you shall die but if by the Spirit you mortify the deeds of the flesh, you shall live. For whoever are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For you have not received the spirit of bondage again in fear, but you have received the spirit of adoption of sons, whereby we cry, Abba (Father). For the Spirit Himself giveth testimony to our spirit, that we are the sons of God and if sons, heirs also heirs indeed of God, and joint heirs with Christ.
GRADUAL/ALLELUIA Psalm 30: 3
Be Thou unto me a God, a protector, and a place of refuge, to save me. V. (Ps. 70: 1) In Thee. 0 God, have I hoped: [) Lord, let me never be confounded. Alleluia, alleluia. V. (Ps. 47: 2) Great is the Lord, and exceedingly to be praised, in the city of our God in His holy mountain. Alleluia.
GOSPEL Luke 16: 1-9
At that time Jesus said to His disciples this parable: “There was a certain man, who had a steward and the same was accused unto him that he had wasted his goods; and he called him, and said to him: How is it that I hear this of thee? Give an account of thy stewardship, for now thou canst be steward no longer, And the steward said within himself: What shall I do, because my lord taketh away from me the stewardship? To dig I am not able: to beg I am ashamed. I know what I will do, that when I shall be put out of the stewardship, they may receive me into their houses, Therefore calling together every one of his lord’s debtors, he said to the first: How much dost thou owe my lord? But he said: A hundred barrels of oil. And he said to him: Take thy bill, and sit down quickly, and write fifty. Then he said to another: And how much dost thou owe my lord? Who said: A hundred quarters of wheat. He said to him: Take thy bill, and write eighty. And the lord commended the unjust steward, as much as he had done wisely: for the children of this world are wiser in their generation than the children of light. And I say to you: Make unto you friends of the mammon of iniquity, that when you shall fail, they may receive you into everlasting dwellings.”
OFFERTORY ANTIPHON Psalm 17: 28, 32
Thou wilt save the humble O Lord, And wilt bring down the eyes of the proud: for who is God but Thee, O Lord?
Accept, we beseech Thee, 0 Lord, the gifts of Thine own bounty, which we bring Thee: that these holy and sacred Mysteries, by the working of the power of Thy grace, may sanctify us in our conduct of” this present life and bring us to everlasting joys. Through our Lord Jesus Christ Thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God Forever and ever.
Commemoration of the Seven Holy Brothers
Be appeased, we beseech Thee, O Lord, and look upon the sacrifices here before Thee, and may they, by the intercession of Thy saints, benefit both our devotion and our salvation.
Commemoratio S. Abdon et Senen Martyrum
May this sacrificial gift, we beseech You, O Lord, which we offer in commemorating the anniversary of the death of Your Saints, both loose the bonds of our sins and secure for us the gifts of Your grace.
Secret for God’s Holy Church
Protect us, O Lord, who assist at Thy mysteries, that, cleaving to things divine, we may serve Thee both in body and in mind. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God Forever and ever.
PREFACE of the Blessed Trinity
It is 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:
COMMUNION ANTIPHON Psalm 33: 9
Taste and see that the Lord is sweet: blessed is the man that hopeth in Him.
May this Heavenly Mystery be to us, O Lord, for renewal of mind and body: that we may enjoy the fruits of that which we celebrate. Through the Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God For ever and ever.
Commemoratio S. Abdon et Senen Martyrum
By the working of this sacred rite O Lord, may our sins be erased, and through the intercession of Your Martyrs, Abdon and Sennen, may our just desires be fulfilled.
Postcommunion for the Intercession of the Saints
May the gift of this Divine Sacrament which we have offered, cleanse us and defend us, we beseech Thee, O Lord; and through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, mother of God, of St. Joseph, of Thy holy apostles Peter and Paul, and of all the saints, free us from all iniquity and deliver us from all adversity. Through the same Lord.
Postcommunion for God’s Holy Church
O Lord our God, we pray Thee that Thou suffer not to succumb to human hazards those whom Thou hast been pleased to make sharers of divine mysteries. Through the same Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God, For ever and ever.