Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Wednesday in the fourth week of Lent

Today's Gospel is St John 9:1-38, the healing of a man blind from birth:

1 Et præteriens Jesus vidit hominem cæcum a nativitate: 2 et interrogaverunt eum discipuli ejus: Rabbi, quis peccavit, hic, aut parentes ejus, ut cæcus nasceretur? 3 Respondit Jesus: Neque hic peccavit, neque parentes ejus: sed ut manifestentur opera Dei in illo. 4 Me oportet operari opera ejus qui misit me, donec dies est: venit nox, quando nemo potest operari: 5 quamdiu sum in mundo, lux sum mundi. 6 Hæc cum dixisset, exspuit in terram, et fecit lutum ex sputo, et linivit lutum super oculos ejus, 7 et dixit ei: Vade, lava in natatoria Siloë (quod interpretatur Missus). Abiit ergo, et lavit, et venit videns. 8 Itaque vicini, et qui viderant eum prius quia mendicus erat, dicebant: Nonne hic est qui sedebat, et mendicabat? Alii dicebant: Quia hic est. 9 Alii autem: Nequaquam, sed similis est ei. Ille vero dicebat: Quia ego sum. 10 Dicebant ergo ei: Quomodo aperti sunt tibi oculi? 11 Respondit: Ille homo qui dicitur Jesus, lutum fecit: et unxit oculos meos, et dixit mihi: Vade ad natatoria Siloë, et lava. Et abii, et lavi, et video. 12 Et dixerunt ei: Ubi est ille? Ait: Nescio.13 Adducunt eum ad pharisæos, qui cæcus fuerat. 14 Erat autem sabbatum quando lutum fecit Jesus, et aperuit oculos ejus. 15 Iterum ergo interrogabant eum pharisæi quomodo vidisset. Ille autem dixit eis: Lutum mihi posuit super oculos, et lavi, et video. 16 Dicebant ergo ex pharisæis quidam: Non est hic homo a Deo, qui sabbatum non custodit. Alii autem dicebant: Quomodo potest homo peccator hæc signa facere? Et schisma erat inter eos. 17 Dicunt ergo cæco iterum: Tu quid dicis de illo qui aperuit oculos tuos? Ille autem dixit: Quia propheta est. 18 Non crediderunt ergo Judæi de illo, quia cæcus fuisset et vidisset, donec vocaverunt parentes ejus, qui viderat: 19 et interrogaverunt eos, dicentes: Hic est filius vester, quem vos dicitis quia cæcus natus est? quomodo ergo nunc videt? 20 Responderunt eis parentes ejus, et dixerunt: Scimus quia hic est filius noster, et quia cæcus natus est: 21 quomodo autem nunc videat, nescimus: aut quis ejus aperuit oculos, nos nescimus; ipsum interrogate: ætatem habet, ipse de se loquatur. 22 Hæc dixerunt parentes ejus, quoniam timebant Judæos: jam enim conspiraverunt Judæi, ut si quis eum confiteretur esse Christum, extra synagogam fieret. 23 Propterea parentes ejus dixerunt: Quia ætatem habet, ipsum interrogate.24 Vocaverunt ergo rursum hominem qui fuerat cæcus, et dixerunt ei: Da gloriam Deo: nos scimus quia hic homo peccator est. 25 Dixit ergo eis ille: Si peccator est, nescio; unum scio, quia cæcus cum essem, modo video. 26 Dixerunt ergo illi: Quid fecit tibi? quomodo aperuit tibi oculos? 27 Respondit eis: Dixi vobis jam, et audistis: quod iterum vultis audire? numquid et vos vultis discipuli ejus fieri? 28 Maledixerunt ergo ei, et dixerunt: Tu discipulus illius sis: nos autem Moysi discipuli sumus. 29 Nos scimus quia Moysi locutus est Deus; hunc autem nescimus unde sit. 30 Respondit ille homo, et dixit eis: In hoc enim mirabile est quia vos nescitis unde sit, et aperuit meos oculos: 31 scimus autem quia peccatores Deus non audit: sed si quis Dei cultor est, et voluntatem ejus facit, hunc exaudit. 32 A sæculo non est auditum quia quis aperuit oculos cæci nati. 33 Nisi esset hic a Deo, non poterat facere quidquam. 34 Responderunt, et dixerunt ei: In peccatis natus es totus, et tu doces nos? Et ejecerunt eum foras.35 Audivit Jesus quia ejecerunt eum foras: et cum invenisset eum, dixit ei: Tu credis in Filium Dei? 36 Respondit ille, et dixit: Quis est, Domine, ut credam in eum? 37 Et dixit ei Jesus: Et vidisti eum, et qui loquitur tecum, ipse est. 38 At ille ait: Credo, Domine. Et procidens adoravit eum.

And Jesus passing by, saw a man, who was blind from his birth: [2] And his disciples asked him: Rabbi, who hath sinned, this man, or his parents, that he should be born blind? [3] Jesus answered: Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents; but that the works of God should be made manifest in him. [4] I must work the works of him that sent me, whilst it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. [5] As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.[6] When he had said these things, he spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and spread the clay on his eyes, [7] And said to him: Go, wash in the pool of Siloe, which is interpreted, Sent. He went therefore, and washed, and he came seeing. [8] The neighbours therefore, and they who had seen him before that he was a beggar, said: Is not this he that sat and begged? Some said: This is he. [9] But others said: No, but he is like him. But he said: I am he. [10] They said therefore to him: How were thy eyes opened?[11] He answered: That man that is called Jesus made clay, and anointed my eyes, and said to me: Go to the pool of Siloe, and wash. And I went, I washed, and I see. [12] And they said to him: Where is he? He saith: I know not. [13] They bring him that had been blind to the Pharisees. [14] Now it was the sabbath, when Jesus made the clay, and opened his eyes. [15] Again therefore the Pharisees asked him, how he had received his sight. But he said to them: He put clay upon my eyes, and I washed, and I see.[16] Some therefore of the Pharisees said: This man is not of God, who keepeth not the sabbath. But others said: How can a man that is a sinner do such miracles? And there was a division among them. [17] They say therefore to the blind man again: What sayest thou of him that hath opened thy eyes? And he said: He is a prophet. [18] The Jews then did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind, and had received his sight, until they called the parents of him that had received his sight, [19] And asked them, saying: Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then doth he now see? [20] His parents answered them, and said: We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind:[21] But how he now seeth, we know not; or who hath opened his eyes, we know not: ask himself: he is of age, let him speak for himself. [22] These things his parents said, because they feared the Jews: for the Jews had already agreed among themselves, that if any man should confess him to be Christ, he should be put out of the synagogue. [23] Therefore did his parents say: He is of age, ask himself. [24] They therefore called the man again that had been blind, and said to him: Give glory to God. We know that this man is a sinner. [25] He said therefore to them: If he be a sinner, I know not: one thing I know, that whereas I was blind, now I see.[26] They said then to him: What did he to thee? How did he open thy eyes? [27] He answered them: I have told you already, and you have heard: why would you hear it again? will you also become his disciples? [28] They reviled him therefore, and said: Be thou his disciple; but we are the disciples of Moses. [29] We know that God spoke to Moses: but as to this man, we know not from whence he is. [30] The man answered, and said to them: Why, herein is a wonderful thing, that you know not from whence he is, and he hath opened my eyes.[31] Now we know that God doth not hear sinners: but if a man be a server of God, and doth his will, him he heareth. [32] From the beginning of the world it hath not been heard, that any man hath opened the eyes of one born blind. [33] Unless this man were of God, he could not do any thing. [34] They answered, and said to him: Thou wast wholly born in sins, and dost thou teach us? And they cast him out. [35] Jesus heard that they had cast him out: and when he had found him, he said to him: Dost thou believe in the Son of God?[36] He answered, and said: Who is he, Lord, that I may believe in him? [37] And Jesus said to him: Thou hast both seen him; and it is he that talketh with thee. [38] And he said: I believe, Lord. And falling down, he adored him.

Matins readings

Reading 1 (Homily by St Augustine): Dread and wondrous are all the things which our Lord Jesus Christ did, both His works and His words; the works, because He wrought them; the words, because they are deep. If, therefore, we consider the meaning of this work of His, we see that that man which was blind from his birth was a figure of mankind. This spiritual blindness was the consequence of the sin of the first man, from whom we all inherit by birth, not death only, but depravity also. For if blindness be unbelief, and faith, light, whom, when Christ came, did He find faithful? May, the Apostle who had himself been born of the race of which the Prophets came, saith We also were by nature children of wrath, even as others. And if children of wrath, then children also of vengeance, children of damnation, children of hell. And wherefore so by nature, unless it were that the sin of the first man had made all his descendants to be born in sin, in that they partook of his nature? If, then, our nature bring sin with it, all men, according to the spirit, are born blind.

R. After that the Lord had looked upon him, the face of Moses shone.
* And when the elders saw that his face shone, they marvelled and were sore afraid.
V. And when he came down from Mount Sinai with the two tables of testimony in his hand, he wist not that his face shone, because that God had spoken with him.
R. And when the elders saw that his face shone, they marvelled and were sore afraid.

Reading 2: The Lord came; and what did He? He set before us a great mystery. Jesus spat on the ground, and made clay of the Spittle for the Word was made flesh. And He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay but yet that man saw not. He was anointed, indeed, but yet still he saw not. And He said unto him Go, wash in the Pool of Siloam. Now, it was the duty of the Evangelist to impress upon us the name of this Pool, and therefore he saith Siloam, which is, by interpretation, Sent. Ye, my brethren, know Who is signified where it is written: (The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a law-giver from his loins, until) He that shall be Sent cometh. Yea, He it is, Who, if He had not been sent, we had never been sent loose out of the prison-house of sin. The blind man went his way therefore, and washed his eyes in that Pool, which is, by interpretation, Sent in other words, he was baptized in Christ. When, therefore, he had figuratively been baptized in Him Whom the Father hath Sent into the world he came seeing. When he was anointed, he was perchance made a figure of a Catechumen.

R. Behold, I send My Angel before thee, to keep thee.
* Beware, and obey My voice; then I will be an enemy unto thine enemies, and an adversary unto thine adversaries; for Mine Angel shall go before thee.
V. O Israel, if thou wilt hearken unto Me, there shall no strange god be in thee, neither shalt thou worship any strange god for am the Lord.

R. Beware, and obey My voice; then I will be an enemy unto thine enemies, and an adversary unto thine adversaries; for Mine Angel shall go before thee.

Reading 3: We have heard this great mystery. Ask of a man: Art thou a Christian? He answereth thee I am not. Then, if thou ask him: Art thou a pagan then, or a Jew? And he still saith unto thee Nay and thou say Art thou then a Catechumen, though not yet one of the faithful? and he saith Yea, a Catechumen then there thou seest a man anointed, but not yet washed. With what hath he been anointed? Ask of him, and he will tell thee. Ask of him in Whom he believeth, and, being a Catechumen, he will say: In Christ. But, behold, I speak before both Faithful and Catechumens. What said I touching the. Spittle and the clay? I said for 'the Word was made flesh.' This the Catechumens hear, but it is not enough for them to be anointed; they must make haste to the washing, if they would have their eyes opened.

R. Give ear, O My people, to My law
* Incline your ears to the words of My mouth.
V. I will open My mouth in parables I will utter dark sayings of old.
R. Incline your ears to the words of My mouth.
V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, * and to the Holy Ghost.

R. Incline your ears to the words of My mouth.

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