25th August
St Mary of Jesus Crucified

OCD: Optional Memory

St Mary of Jesus Crucified was born of the Baouardy family, Catholics of the Greek Melchite Rite, at Abellin in Galilee in 1846. In 1867 she entered the Discalced Carmelites at Pau in France and was sent with the founding group to the Carmel of Mangalore in India where, in 1870, she made her profession. She returned to France in 1872. In 1875 she went to the Holy Land where she built a monastery in Bethlehem and began planning for another at Nazareth. Noted for her supernatural gifts, especially for humility, for her devotion to the Holy Spirit, and her great love for the Church and the Pope, she died at Bethlehem in 1878.  She was canonized on the 17th of May 2015.




Entrance Antiphon -
Come, bride of Christ, and receive the crown, which the Lord prepared for you for ever.

Opening Prayer
God, Father of mercy and all consolation, you raised St Mary of Jesus Crucified, the humble daughter of the Holy Land, to contemplation of the mysteries of your Son and made her a witness to the love and joy of the Holy Spirit. Grant us, through her intercession, so to share in the sufferings of Christ that we may rejoice in the revelation of your glory. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever.

A reading from the letter of St Paul to the Romans - 8:26-30
The Spirit himself expresses our plea in a way that could never be put into words.
The Spirit too comes to help us in our weakness. For when we cannot choose words in order to pray properly, the Spirit himself expresses our plea in a way that could never be put into words, and God who knows everything in our hearts knows perfectly well what he means, and that the pleas of the saints expressed by the Spirit are according to the mind of God.

We know that by turning everything to their good God co-operates with all those who love him, with all those that he has called according to his purpose. They are the ones he chose especially long ago and intended to become true images of his Son, so that his Son might be the eldest of many brothers. He called those he intended for this; those he called he justified, and with those he justified he shared his glory.

Responsorial Psalm - Ps: 33:2- 3, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9 (R.9a)
R/. Taste and see that the Lord is good.

I will bless the Lord at all times,
his praise always on my lips;
in the Lord my soul shall make its boast.
The humble shall hear and be glad. R/.

Glorify the Lord with me.
Together let us praise his name.
I sought the Lord and he answered me;
from all my terrors he set me free. R/.

Look towards him and be radiant;
let your faces not be abashed.
This poor man called; the Lord heard him
and rescued him from all his distress. R/.

The angel of the lord is encamped
around those who revere him, to rescue them.
Taste and see that the Lord is good.
He is happy who seeks refuge in him. R/.

Revere the Lord, you his saints.
They lack nothing, those who revere him.
Strong lions suffer want and go hungry
but those who fear the Lord lack no blessing. R/.

Gospel Acclamation - cf. Mt. 11:25
Alleluia, Alleluia!
Blessed are you, Father,
Lord of heaven and earth,
because you have revealed the mysteries of your kingdom to little ones.

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew - 11:25-30
You have hidden these things from the learned and have revealed them to mere children.
Jesus exclaimed, 'I bless you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for hiding these things from the learned and the clever and revealing them to mere children. Yes, Father, for that is what it pleased you to do. Everything has been entrusted to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, just as no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.
'Come to me, all you who labour and are over burdened, and I will give you rest. Shoulder my yoke and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Yes, my yoke is easy and my burden light.'

Prayer over the Gifts
Lord, receive our worship in memory of Mary the virgin. By this perfect sacrifice make us grow in unselfish love of you and for our brothers and sisters. Grant this through Christ our Lord.

Communion Antiphon - Lk 10:42
The wise virgin chose the better part for herself, and it shall not be taken away from her.

Prayer after Communion
God of mercy, we rejoice that on this feast of St Mary you give us the bread of heaven. May it bring us pardon for our sins, health of body, your grace in this life, and glory in heaven. Grant this through Christ our Lord.

Divine Office

From the Common of Virgins, or of Holy Women (Religious)

Office of Readings
Second Reading - From the Catechesis of St. Cyril of Jerusalem, Bishop

The Holy Spirit, although He is one and of one nature and indivisible, apportions His grace as He wills to each one. When the dry tree is watered it brings forth shoots. So too the soul in sin: when through penance it is made worthy of the grace of the Holy Spirit, it bears the fruit of justice. Though the Spirit is one in nature, yet by the will of God and in the name of Christ He brings about multiple effects of virtue.

He uses the tongue of one man for wisdom, He illumines the soul of another by prophecy, to another He imparts the power of driving out devils, to another the gift of interpreting the Sacred Scriptures; He strengthens the self-control of one man, teaches another the nature of almsgiving, another to fast and mortify himself, another to despise the things of the body; He prepares another man for martyrdom. He acts differently in different men while Himself remaining unchanged, as it is written: 'to each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.'

His approach is gentle, His presence fragrant, His yoke very light; rays of light and knowledge shine forth before Him as He comes. He comes with the heart of a true protector; He comes to save , to heal, to teach, to admonish, to strengthern, to console, to enlighten the mind, first of the man who receives Him, then through Him the minds of others also.

As a man previously in darkness, suddenly seeing the sun, receives his sight and sees clearly what he did not see before, so the man deemed worthy of the Holy Spirit is enlightened in soul and sees beyond the power of human sight what he did not know before. Although his body remains on the earth, his soul arready contemplates heaven as in a mirror.

R/. We contemplate your beauty, O Virgin of Christ: * you have received from the Lord a gleaming crown.
V/. Nothing could bring you to surrender virginity; nothing could separate you from the love of the Son of God. * You have received from the Lord a gleaming crown.