A reading from the second Letter of Saint Paul to the Corinthians (2 Corinthians 9:6b- 10)
“God loves a cheerful giver.”
Brethren: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must do as he has made up his mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to provide you with every blessing in abundance, so that you may always have enough of everything and may provide in abundance for every good work. As it is written, “He scatters abroad, he gives to the poor; his righteousness endures for ever.” He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your resources and increase the harvest of your righteousness.
The word of the Lord.
RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm l12:lb-2.5-6.7-8.9 (R. 5a)
R/. It goes well for the man who deals generously and lends.
Blessed the man who fears the Lord,
who takes great delight in his commandments.
His descendants shall be powerful on earth;
the generation of the upright will be blest. R/.
It goes well for the man who deals generously and lends,
who conducts his affairs with justice.
He will never be moved;
for ever shall the just be remembered. R/.
He has no fear of evil news;
with a firm heart, he trusts in the Lord.
With a steadfast heart he will not fear;
he will see the downfall of his foes. R/.
Open-handed, he gives to the poor;
his justice stands firm for ever.
His might shall be exalted in glory. R/.
Alleluia John 8:12
Alleluia. I am the light of the world, says the Lord; he who follows me will have the light of life. Alleluia.
“If any one serves me, the Father will honour him.”
A reading from the holy Gospel according to John (John 12:24-26)
At that time: Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. He who loves his life loses it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. If anyone serves me, he must follow me; and where I am, there shall my servant be also; if any one serves me, the Father will honour him.”
The Gospel of the Lord.
St Lawrence was a deacon of the Church of Rome who was temporarily in charge of the church administration. During persecution, the authorities asked him to surrender all the treasures of the church in three days. For the next three days, St Lawrence went around gathering the poor supported by the church. Then he brought them before the authorities and presented them as the ‘treasures of the Church’. The martyrdom of St Lawrence reminds us that our lives are to be poured out for others so that they can grow in faith and love and be the treasures of the church. Hence, every sacrifice we make is like a dying to ourselves, and yet the harvest that will be reaped will make it all worth it.