Confessor, Doctor of the Church
ST. JEROME, born in Dalmatia, in 329, was sent to school at Rome. His boyhood was not free from fault. His thirst for knowledge was excessive, and his love of books a passion. He had studied under the best masters, visited foreign cities, and devoted himself to the pursuit of science. But Christ had need of his strong will and active intellect for the service of His Church. St. Jerome felt and obeyed the call, made a vow of celibacy, fled from Rome to the wild Syrian desert, and there for four years learnt in solitude, penance, and prayer a new lesson of divine wisdom. This was his novitiate. The Pope soon summoned him to Rome, and there put upon the now famous Hebrew scholar the task of revising the Latin Bible, which was to be his noblest work. Retiring thence to his beloved Bethlehem, the eloquent hermit poured forth from his solitary cell for thirty years a stream of luminous writings upon the Christian world.
Reflection. — "To know," says St. Basil, "how to submit thyself with thy whole soul, is to know how to imitate Christ."
Lives Of The Saints By Alban Butler, Benziger Bros. Edition www.globalgrey.co.uk
Introit • Ecclus. 15, 5
In the midst of the church the Lord opened his mouth: and filled him with the spirit of wisdom and understanding: He clothed him with a robe of glory. (P.T. Alleluia, alleluia.) Ps. 91, 2. It is good to give praise to the Lord: and to sing to Thy name, O Most High. Glory be …
O God, Who didst vouchsafe to provide for thy Church blessed Jerome, Thy confessor, a great Doctor of the expounding of the Sacred Scriptures, grant, we beseech Thee, that through his merits we may be enabled, by Thine assistance, to practice what both by word and deed he hath taught us. Through our Lord.
Epistle • 2 Tim. 4, 1-8
Lesson from the Epistle of blessed Paul the Apostle to Timothy.
[His charge to Timothy. He tells him of his approaching death and desires him to come to him.]
Dearly beloved, I charge thee, before God and Jesus Christ, who shall judge the living and the dead, by his coming, and his kingdom: Preach the word: be instant in season, out of season: reprove, entreat, rebuke in all patience and doctrine. For there shall be a time, when they will not endure sound doctrine; but, according to their own desires, they will heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears: And will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth, but will be turned unto fables. But be thou vigilant, labour in all things, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill thy ministry. Be sober. For I am even now ready to be sacrificed: and the time of my dissolution is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith. As to the rest, there is laid up for me a crown of justice, which the Lord the just judge will render to me in that day: and not only to me, but to them also that love his coming.
Gradual • Ps. 36, 30, 31
The mouth of the just shall meditate wisdom and his tongue shall speak judgement: the law of his God is in his heart; and his steps shall not be supplanted.
Alleluia, alleluia. Ecclus. 45, 9. The Lord loved him, and adorned him: He clothed him with a robe of glory. Alleluia.
Gospel • Matt. 5, 13-19
Continuation of the Holy Gospel According to St. Matthew.
[Christ's sermon upon the mount. The eight beatitudes.]
At that time, Jesus said to His disciples, You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt lose its savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is good for nothing any more but to be cast out, and to be trodden on by men. You are the light of the world. A city seated on a mountain cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle and put it under a bushel, but upon a candlestick, that it may shine to all that are in the house.
So let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. Do not think that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets. I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For amen I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot, or one tittle shall not pass of the law, till all be fulfilled. He therefore that shall break one of these least commandments, and shall so teach men, shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven. But he that shall do and teach, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
Offertory • Ps. 91, 13
The just shall flourish like the palm-tree: he shall grow up like the cedar of Libanus. (P. T. Alleluia.)
By thy heavenly gifts, O Lord, grant us, we pray to serve Thee with untrammeled minds, that the offerings we bring may, by the intercession of blessed Jerome, Thy confessor, affect our healing and our glory. Through our Lord.
Communion • Luke 12, 42
A faithful and wise steward, whom His lord set over his family; to give them their measure of wheat in due season. (P. T. Alleluia.)
Filled with heavenly nourishment, we pray Thee, O Lord, that, by the intercession of blessed Jerome, Thy confessor, we may be found worthy to obtain the favor of Thy mercy. Through our Lord.