A PRAYER SERVICE AT HOME
WHEN ATTENDANCE AT MASS IS NOT POSSIBLE

Eighteenth Sunday of Ordinary Time

In these extraordinary times when we cannot gather as a Christian Community to celebrate Mass, let us unite ourselves spiritually to the Mass as it is being celebrated in our churches.

One way you can do this by joining broadcast Masses on radio, television, or via the internet.

This resource is offered to provide a ritual by which families, "the domestic church," can keep the Lord's day holy by joining together to celebrate part of the Church's liturgy at home. Ideally, the head of the family will lead the service; other members of the family should take on roles as readers.

It would be appropriate to celebrate this service at the usual time the family would attend Mass. If possible, prepare a suitable prayer space with a crucifix, holy picture and/or a candle or two. If the family is blessed with musical talent, hymns would be appropriate.

INTRODUCTORY RITES

GREETING

PENITENTIAL ACT

  • Leader:
  • Coming together as God's family, with confidence let us acclaim the Father's forgiveness, for God is full of gentleness and compassion.

After a pause for silent reflection, the leader continues.

  • Leader:
  • Lord, you were born of the Virgin Mary
       for the salvation of the world.
    Lord, have mercy.

  • All:
  • Lord, have mercy.
  • Leader
  • Christ, you died on the cross to heal the wounds of sin.
    Christ, have mercy.

  • All:
  • Christ, have mercy.
  • Leader
  • Lord, you rose from the dead to open for us the gates of heaven.
    Lord, have mercy.

  • All:
  • Lord, have mercy.

GLORY TO GOD

  • All:
  • Glory to God in the highest,
    and on earth peace to people of good will.

    We praise you, we bless you
    we adore you, we glorify you,
    we give you thanks for your great glory,
    Lord God, heavenly King,
    O God, almighty Father.

    Lord Jesus Christ, Only Begotten Son,
    Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,
    you take away the sins of the world,
       have mercy on us;
    you take away the sins of the world,
       receive our prayer;
    you are seated at the right hand of the Father,
       have mercy on us.

    For you alone are the Holy One,
    you alone are the Lord,
    you alone are the Most High, (Jesus),
    Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit,
    in the glory of God the Father. Amen.

COLLECT

  • Leader:
  • Let us pray.

    Draw near to your servants, O Lord,
    and answer their prayers with unceasing kindness,
    that, for those who glory in you as their Creator and guide,
    you may restore what you have created
    and keep safe what you have restored.
    Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
    who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
    one God, for ever and ever.

  • All:
  • Amen.

THE LITURGY OF THE WORD

FIRST READING

  • Reader:
  • Thus says the LORD:
    All you who are thirsty,
    come to the water!
    You who have no money,
    come, receive grain and eat;
    Come, without paying and without cost,
    drink wine and milk!
    Why spend your money for what is not bread;
    your wages for what fails to satisfy?
    Heed me, and you shall eat well,
    you shall delight in rich fare.
    Come to me heedfully,
    listen, that you may have life.
    I will renew with you the everlasting covenant,
    the benefits assured to David.

    The Word of the Lord.

  • All:
  • Thanks be to God.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM

  • Reader:
  • The hand of the Lord feeds us; he answers all our needs.

  • All:
  • The hand of the Lord feeds us; he answers all our needs.

  • Reader:
  • The Lord is gracious and merciful,

    slow to anger and of great kindness.

    The Lord is good to all

    and compassionate toward all his works.
  • All:
  • The hand of the Lord feeds us; he answers all our needs.

  • Reader:
  • The eyes of all look hopefully to you,

    and you give them their food in due season;

    you open your hand

    and satisfy the desire of every living thing.
  • All:
  • The hand of the Lord feeds us; he answers all our needs.

  • Reader:
  • The Lord is just in all his ways

    and holy in all his works.

    The Lord is near to all who call upon him,

    to all who call upon him in truth.
  • All:
  • The hand of the Lord feeds us; he answers all our needs.

SECOND READING

  • Reader:
  • A reading from the First Letter of Saint Paul to the Romans

    Brothers and sisters: What will separate us from the love of
    Christ? Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine,
    or nakedness, or peril, or the sword? No, in all these things
    we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us. For I A.M.
    convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities,
    nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height,
    nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us
    from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    The Word of the Lord.

  • All:
  • Thanks be to God.

GOSPEL ACCLAMATION

  • Cantor:
  • Alleluia, alleluia.
  • All:
  • Alleluia, alleluia.
  • Cantor:
  • Man does not live on bread alone,
    but on every word that comes forth
    from the mouth of God.
  • All:
  • Alleluia, alleluia.


GOSPEL

  • Leader:
  • A reading from the Holy Gospel according to Matthew

    When Jesus heard of the death of John the Baptist, he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place by himself. The crowds heard of this and followed him on foot from their towns. When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd, his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick. When it was evening, the disciples approached him and said, "This is a deserted place and it is already late; dismiss the crowds so that they can go to the villages and buy food for themselves." Jesus said to them, "There is no need for them to go away; give them some food yourselves." But they said to him, "Five loaves and two fish are all we have here." Then he said, "Bring them here to me", and he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, he said the blessing, broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, who in turn gave them to the crowds. They all ate and were satisfied, and they picked up the fragments left over — twelve wicker baskets full. Those who ate were about five thousand men, not counting women and children.

    The Gospel of the Lord.

  • All:
  • Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.


REFLECTION

This reflection appears in The Word Among Us which is providing free access to their magazine content during this stage of the coronavirus crisis. Visit wau.org.

  • Reader:
  • In all these things we conquer overwhelmingly. (Romans 8:37)

    Julius Caesar. Alexander the Great. Napoleon Bonaparte. Genghis Khan. What do these men have in common? They were among the world's greatest conquerors. They waged military campaigns that took them far and wide, forming mighty empires along the way.

    Would you include Jesus in that list? Or St. Paul? Or yourself, for that matter? We don't think of Christ, or Christians in general, as conquerors. Jesus died an ignoble death at the hands of the Romans. St. Paul was beheaded by the same empire. They looked more like the conquered than conquerors. Even today many Christians are martyred by those in power.

    And yet through his sacrifice on the cross and his resurrection from the dead, Jesus conquered the greatest enemies of all: sin and death. And because of our baptism into Christ, that's a victory we all share in—no matter what befalls us in this life.

    Paul's words must have comforted the early Christians whenever they experienced persecution for their faith. Even when it looked like they were "losing," they knew they were actually "winning." They trusted that not even the worst calamity could separate them from Jesus (Romans 8:39)!

    These verses can bring you comfort as well. You may be experiencing the kind of anguish and distress that St. Paul described. Or maybe you are repeatedly "losing" to a certain temptation. Whatever the case, know that as you cling to the Lord, you will "win" in the end. One day Jesus will welcome you into his heavenly kingdom, and everything will be made right and beautiful.

    Until then, remember that God will never separate himself from you; his love is too strong, too real and solid. And through that love, you too will triumph over sin, death, and all the trials of life. You too will be a conqueror.

    "Jesus, may I never be separated from your love!"


PROFESSION OF FAITH

  • All:
  • I believe in one God,
    the Father almighty,
    maker of heaven and earth,
    of all things visible and invisible.

    I believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
    the Only Begotten Son of God,
    born of the Father before all ages,
    God from God, Light from Light,
    true God from true God,
    begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father;
    through him all things were made,
    For us men and for our salvation
       he came down from heaven:

    [All bow during these two lines:]
    and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary,
       and become man.

    For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
    he suffered death and was buried,
    and rose again on the third day
       in accordance with the Scriptures.
    He ascended into heaven
       and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
    He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,
    and his kingdom will have no end.

    I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
    who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
    who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified,
    who has spoken through the Prophets.

    I believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church.
    I confess one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
    and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead,
       and the life of the world to come. Amen.

GENERAL INTERCESSIONS

  • Leader:
  • Jesus fed the five thousand in the desert,
    and continues to feed us in the Eucharist
    with His Body and Blood.
    We ask God our Father, in His Son's name,
    for all the needs of our world at this time.
  • Reader:
  • The response will be: Lord, hear our prayer.
  • Reader:
  • For the Church:
    that we may welcome all who hunger for meaning and purpose
    into our assembly where they can be nourished by the Word of
    God and the Bread of Life.
    We pray to the Lord.
  • All:
  • Lord, hear our prayer.
  • Reader:
  • For the members of Congress:
    that God will open a new understanding
    of the issues that they face and help them
    to work together to serve those who are most in need.
    We pray to the Lord.
  • All:
  • Lord, hear our prayer.
  • Reader:
  • For all who are working to defeat the coronavirus,
    that God will give strength to all healthcare workers,
    insight to those researching treatments and cures,
    and patience to all who face daily challenges because of the disease.
    We pray to the Lord.
  • All:
  • Lord, hear our prayer.
  • Reader:
  • For all who are hungry, facing famine, are undernourished,
    or struggling with failed crops:
    that God will ease their suffering
    and touch the hearts of many to share with them.
    We pray to the Lord.
  • All:
  • Lord, hear our prayer.
  • Reader:
  • For all who work in or support food pantries:
    that their efforts may show the love and compassion
    of God to hungry children and families.
    We pray to the Lord.
  • All:
  • Lord, hear our prayer.
  • Reader:
  • For all who serve in our military services,
    that their generosity and sacrifices may contribute
    to lasting peace and a better world.
    We pray to the Lord.
  • All:
  • Lord, hear our prayer.
  • Reader:
  • For all parents and students as the school year approaches:
    that God will give them wisdom and insight as they review
    their options and choose the best way to learning this year.
    We pray to the Lord.
  • All:
  • Lord, hear our prayer.
  • Reader:
  • For the sick, especially those for whom we have been asked to pray,
    and, particularly, those who are placed in quarantine and isolation,
    that God's healing touch may bring them comfort and peace.
    We pray to the Lord.
  • All:
  • Lord, hear our prayer.
  • Reader:
  • For all our sisters and brothers who have died, especially
    Dorothy Davidson, Deacon Bill Iacobellis, and
    those who have died from the coronavirus pandemic,

    that they experience the joy of God's heavenly family for all eternity.
    We pray to the Lord.
  • All:
  • Lord, hear our prayer.
  • Reader:
  • For the prayers we now make in the silence of our hearts, (pause)
    We pray to the Lord.
  • All:
  • Lord, hear our prayer.
  • Leader:
  • In the abundance of your kindness, O Lord, hear our prayers.
    May we give you thanks for what you have given us
    by giving joyfully to others; may we embrace your Spirit of love
    by loving one another, with selflessness and compassion.
    We ask this through Christ our Lord.

  • All:
  • Amen.

LORD'S PRAYER

  • Leader:
  • Let us pray with confidence to the Father in the words our Savior gave us.
  • All:
  • Our Father, who art in heaven,
    hallowed be thy name.
    thy kingdom come,
    thy will be done,
    on earth, as it is in heaven.
    Give us this day our daily bread
    and forgive us our trespasses,
    as we forgive those who trespass against us;
    and lead us not into temptation,
    but deliver us from evil.

    Amen.


SPIRITUAL COMMUNION

  • All:
  • My Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament.
    I love You above all things and I desire to receive You into my soul.
    Since I cannot now receive You sacramentally,
    come at least spiritually into my heart.
    I embrace You as if You were already there,
    and unite myself wholly to You.
    Never permit me to be separated from You.

    Amen.

PRAYER OF BLESSING

  • Leader:
  • St Michael, the Archangel, Protect and Pray for us.
  • All:
  • Amen.
  • Leader:
  • The Lord bless us and keep us; the Lord make his face shine on us and be gracious to us; the Lord turn his face toward us and give us his peace both now and forever.
  • All:
  • Amen.
  • Leader:
  • In the Name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
  • All:
  • Amen.
SOURCES

Lectionary for Sunday Mass
© 1998, 1997, 1970, Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Washington, DC

Prayers at Home When Gathering for Mass Is Not Possible
© 2020, the Diocese of Clonfert and the Diocese of Elphin, Ireland

The Roman Missal © 2011, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, DC

Sunday Celebrations in the Absence of a Priest: Leader's Edition
© 2007, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Washington, DC

The Word Among Us, © 2020 The Word Among Us.