Theme of the Sunday: We Are Invited to a Banquet, Not to a Funeral. The banquet theme joins together the first reading and the gospel. The banquet is the symbol of the happiness and joy present in the kingdom of God. The first reading tells us of a promise; the gospel tells us of its actualisation. If the banquet has already begun (with the coming of the Messiah), why do we still have so much hatred, so many wars, deaths all over the world? Yes, the feast has begun, but the Kingdom is still awaiting its full attainment. The second reading is also connected with this theme. We are given the example of the community at Philippi where there is authentic love and where a completely new life has really begun; the help and the gifts sent to Paul are proof of this.
Entrance Antiphon Ps130:3-4
If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand? But with you is found forgiveness, O God of Israel.
May your grace, O Lord, we pray, at all times go before us and follow after, and make us always determined to carry out good works. Through our Lord…
The Lord will prepare a feast and will wipe away tears from all faces.
A reading from the Book of Isaiah (Isaiah 25:6-10a)
On this mountain the Lord of hosts will make for all peoples a feast of fat things, a feast of choice wines — of fat things full of marrow, of choice wines well refined. And he will destroy on this mountain the covering that is cast over all peoples, the veil that is spread over all nations. He will swallow up death forever, and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces, and the reproach of his people he will take away from all the earth, for the Lord has spoken. It will be said on that day, “Behold, this is our God; we have waited for him, that he might save us. This is the Lord; we have waited for him; let us be glad and rejoice in his salvation.” For the hand of the Lord will rest on this mountain.
The word of the Lord.
RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm23:1 -3a.3b-4.5.6 (R.6cd)
R/. In the Lord’s own house shall I dwell for length of days unending.
The Lord is my shepherd;
there is nothing I shall Want.
Fresh and green are the pastures
where he gives me repose.
Near restful waters he leads me;
he revives my soul. R.
He guides me along the right path,
for the sake of his name.
Though I should walk in the valley of the shadow of death,
no evil would I fear, for you are with me.
Your crook and your staff will give me comfort. R.
You have prepared a table before me
in the sight of my foes.
My head you have anointed with oil;
my cup is overflowing. R.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life.
In the Lord’s own house shall I dwell
For length of days unending. R.
I can do all things in him who strengthens me.
A reading from the Letter of Saint Paul to the Philippians (Philippians 4:12-14.19-20)
Brethren: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound; in any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and want. I can do all things in him who strengthens me. Yet it was kind of you to share my trouble. And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. To our God and Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
The word of the Lord.
ALLELUIA Ephesians 1:17-18
Alleluia. May the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ enlighten the eyes of our hearts that we might know what is the hope to which he has called us. Alleluia.
Invite to the marriage feast as many as you find.
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew (Matthew 22: 1-14)
*At that time: Again Jesus spoke to the chief priests and elders of the people, in parables, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a marriage feast for his son, and sent his servants to call those who were invited to the marriage feast; but they would not come. Again he sent other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who are invited, Behold, I have made ready my dinner, my oxen and my fat calves are killed, and everything is ready; come to the marriage feast. ’ But they made light of it and went off, one to his farm, another to his business, while the rest seized his servants, treated them shamefully, and killed them. The king was angry, and he sent his troops and destroyed those murderers and burned their city. Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go therefore to the streets, and invite to the marriage feast as many as you find.’ And those servants went out into the streets and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good; so the wedding hall was filled with guests. *“But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who had no wedding garment; and he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. Then the king said to the attendants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and cast him into the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. ’ For many are called, but few are chosen.
The Gospel of the Lord.