Third Sunday of Lent: Missa “Oculi mei”
The Station for the Third Sunday in Lent is at St. Laurence-without-the-Walls in Rome which was built by Constantine on the Tiburtine Way. It contains the tomb of the celebrated deacon, the great martyr of Rome. Enlarged and enriched in the course of the ages, it has always been much visited by the faithful. The high Altar is reserved for the sole use of the Pope; it is one of the five patriarchal basilicas of Rome and St. Lawrence asks us to remember always our need to sacrifice.
Today we see The Christ in open conflict with satan. He throws him to the ground, disarms him and expels him from the body of one possessed. As He Himself explains in a parable (Gospel), satan or “Beelzebub” believed himself secure in his empire, like the strong and well-armed man who defends the entrance of his house, but the Son of God, stronger than the fallen angel, came and took from him his unjust conquest, and we become His. Also we should during Lent, which is a time when the struggle against the old man is more intense, “live as children of the light, performing actions good, just and true” (Epistle).
INTROIT Psalm 24: 15-16
My eyes are ever towards the Lord : for He shall pluck my feet out of the snare : look Thou upon me, and have mercy on me : for I am alone and poor. (Psalm 24: 1, 2). To Thee, O Lord, have I lifted up my soul : in Thee, O my God, I put my trust, let me not be ashamed. V. Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. Repeat My eyes are ever…
Humbling ourselves before Thee, we beseech Thee, Almighty God, favorably to regard the desires of our heart: and in our defense to stretch forth the right hand of Thy Majesty. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God Forever and ever. R.Amen.
Second Collect for the Intercession of Thy Saints
Defend us, we beseech Thee, O Lord, from all dangers of mind and body; that through the intercession of the blessed and glorious ever Virgin Mary, Mother of God, together with blessed Joseph, Thy blessed apostles Peter and Paul, and blessed N. (Here mention the titular saint of the church), and all the saints, mercifully grant us safety and peace; that all adversities and errors being overcome, Thy Church may serve Thee in security and freedom.
Third Collect for the Living and the Dead
O almighty and eternal God, who hast dominion over both the living and the dead, and hast mercy on all whom Thou forekowest shall be Thine by faith and good works : we humbly beseech Thee that all for whom we have resolved to make supplication whether the present world still holds them in the flesh or the world to come has already received them out of the body, may, through the intercession of all Thy saints, obtain of Thy goodness and clemency pardon for all their sins. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who livest and reignest, with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God For ever and ever. R. Amen.
EPISTLE Ephesians 5: 1-9
Lesson from the Epistle of blessed Paul the Apostle to the Ephesians. Brethren : Be ye followers of God, as most dear children : and walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath delivered Himself for us, an oblation and a sacrifice to God for an odor of sweetness. But fornication, and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not so much as be named among you, as becometh saints: or obscenity, or foolish talking, or scurrility, which is to no purpose : but rather giving of thanks. For know you this, and understand, that no fornicator, or unclean or covetous person, which is a serving of idols, hath inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words : for because of these things cometh the anger of God upon the children of unbelief. Be ye not therefore partakers with them. For you were heretofore darkness: but now light in the Lord. Walk then as children of the light : for the fruit of the light is in all goodness, and justice, and truth.
GRADUAL Psalm 9: 20, 4
Arise, O Lord, let no man be strengthened : let the nations be judged in Thy sight. V. When my enemy shall be turned back, they shall be weakened and perish before Thy face.
TRACT Psalm 122: 1-3
To Thee have I lifted up my eyes, Who dwellest in Heaven. V. Behold as the eyes of servants are on the hands of their masters. V. And as the eyes of the handmaid are on the hands of her mistress : so are our eyes unto the Lord our God, until He have mercy on us. V. Have mercy on us, O Lord, have mercy on us.
GOSPEL Luke 11: 14-28
At that time Jesus was casting out a devil, and the same was dumb. And when He had cast out the devil, the dumb spoke, and the multitudes were in admiration at it. But some of them said : “He casteth out devils by Beelzebub, the prince of devils.” And others, tempting, asked of Him a sign from Heaven. But He, seeing their thoughts, said to them : “Every kingdom divided against itself shall be brought to desolation, and house upon house shall fall. And if Satan also be divided against himself, how shall this kingdom stand? Because you say that through Beelzebub I cast out devils. Now If I cast out devils by Beelzebub, by whom do your children cast them out? Therefore, they shall be your judges. But if I by the finger of God cast out devils : doubtless of the kingdom of God is come upon you. When a strong man armed keepeth his court, those things are in peace which he possesseth. But if a stronger than he come upon him and overcome him, he will take away all his armor wherein he trusted, and will distribute his spoils. He that is not with Me is against Me : and he that gathereth not with Me scattereth. When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through places without water, seeking rest : and not finding, he saith: I will return into my house whence I came out. And when he is come, he findeth it swept and garnished. Then he goeth and taketh with him seven other spirits more wicked then himself, and entering in they dwell there. And the last state of that man becomes worse than the first.” And it came to pass, as He spoke these things, a certain woman from the crowd, lifting up her voice, said to Him: “Blessed is the womb that bore Thee, and the paps that gave Thee suck.” But He said: “Yes, rather, blessed are they who hear the word of God, and keep it.”
OFFERTORY Psalm 18: 9-12 48
The justices of the Lord are right, rejoicing hearts, and His judgments are sweeter than honey and the honey-comb; for Thy servant keepeth them.
May this victim, we beseech Thee, O Lord, cleanse away our sins, sanctifying Thy servants in both soul and body for the celebration of this sacrifice. 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. R.Amen.
Second Secret to implore the Intercession of the Saints
Graciously hear us, O God our Savior, and by the virtue of this sacrament protect us from all enemies of soul and body, bestowing on us both grace in this life and glory hereafter.
Third Secret for the Living and the Dead
O God, Who alone knowest the number of the elect to be admitted to the happiness of Heaven, grant, we beseech Thee, that through the intercession of all Thy saints, the names of all who have been recommended to our prayers and of all the faithful, may be inscribed in the book of blessed predestination. Protect us, O Lord, who assist at Thy mysteries; that, fixed upon things divine we may serve Thee in both body and mind. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who livest and reignest, with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God For ever and ever. R. Amen.
PREFACE of Lent
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 by this bodily fast, dost curb our vices, dost lift up our minds and bestow on us strength and rewards; through Christ our Lord. Through whom the Angels praise Thy Majesty, the Dominations worship it, the Powers stand in awe. The Heavens and the heavenly hosts together with the blessed Seraphim in triumphant chorus unite to celebrate it. Together with these we entreat Thee that Thou mayest bid our voices also to be admitted while we say with lowly praise:
HOLY, HOLY, HOLY…
COMMUNION Psalm 83: 4-5
The sparrow hath found herself a house, and the turtle a nest, where she may lay her young ones : Thy altars, O Lord of Hosts, my King, and My God : blessed are they that dwell in Thy house, they shall praise Thee for ever and ever.
Mercifully absolve us, we beseech Thee, O Lord, from all guilt and deliver us from all danger whom Thou doest grant to partake of so great a mystery. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who livest and reignest, with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God For ever and ever. R. Amen.
Second Postcommunion to implore the Intercession of the Saints
May the oblation of this divine sacrament cleanse and defend us, we beseech Thee, O Lord, and, through the intercession of the blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, with blessed Joseph, Thy blessed apostles Peter and Paul, blessed N. (here mention the titular saint of the church), and all the saints, purify us from all our sins and deliver us from all adversity.
Third Postcommunion for the Living and the Dead
Let us pray. May the sacraments which we have received purify us, we beseech Thee, O almighty and merciful Lord; and through the intercession of all Thy saints, grant that this Thy sacrament may not be unto us a condemnation, but a salutary intercession for pardon; may it be the washing away of sin, the strength of the weak, a protection against all dangers of the world, and a remission of all the sins of the faithful, whether living or dead. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who livest and reignest, with God the Father, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God For ever and ever. R. Amen.