Fourth Sunday of Advent
Prayer for the Morning
God will make his throne endure as the heavens:
come, let us adore.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son,
and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning,
is now, and will be for ever. Amen. Alleluia!
The advent of our God
Our prayers must now employ,
And we must meet him on his road
With hymns of holy joy.
The everlasting Son
Incarnate deigns to be;
Himself a servant’s form puts on
To set his people free.
Daughter of Zion, rise
To meet your lowly King,
Nor let your faithless heart despise
The peace he comes to bring.
Psalm 78:3-5a, 69-71
He shall stand firm and shepherd his flock/ by the strength of the Lord,/ in the majestic name of the Lord, his God. (Mi 5:3)
God promised to send as Messiah and Savior a shepherd in the line of the great shepherd king of Israel, David. God keeps his promises in unexpected ways: the Child is born not of a ruling sovereign but of a humble woman of David’s line, the Blessed Virgin Mary.
The things we have heard and understood,
the things our fathers have told us,
these we will not hide from their children
but will tell them to the next generation:
the glories of the Lord and his might
and the marvelous deeds he has done,
the witness he gave to Jacob,
the law he established in Israel.
He built his shrine like the heavens,
or like the earth which he made firm for ever.
And he chose David his servant
and took him away from the sheepfolds.
From the care of the ewes he called him
to be shepherd of Jacob his people,
of Israel his own possession.
Glory to the Father….
Word of God. Deuteronomy 28:2-4a
When you hearken to the voice of the Lord, your God, all these blessings will come upon you and overwhelm you:
“May you be blessed in the city,/ and blessed in the country!/ Blessed be the fruit of your womb.”
Blessed are you, daughter, by the Most High God,
above all the women on earth. (Jdt 13:18)
Canticle of Zechariah
Hosanna to the Son of David;/ blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord;/ hosanna in the highest. (Mt 21:9)
Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel;
he has come to his people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty savior,
born of the house of his servant David.
Through his holy prophets he promised of old
that he would save us from our enemies,
from the hands of all who hate us.
He promised to show mercy to our fathers
and to remember his holy covenant.
This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham:
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear,
holy and righteous in his sight
all the days of our life.
You, my child, shall be called the prophet
of the Most High;
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
to give his people knowledge of salvation
by the forgiveness of their sins.
In the tender compassion of our God
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness
and the shadow of death,
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.
Glory to the Father…
From Bethlehem in Judah, too small to be honored among the clans of Israel, came the new Ruler and Savior, the shepherd born to fulfill the promise made to David’s house. To him we pray:
R/Come and reward your people’s hope!
Grant us the faithful patience of Elizabeth: R/
Grant us the faithful witness of John the Baptist: R/
Grant us the faithful love of Mary: R/
Lord Jesus Christ, you are Son of God and Son of Mary. Come and save your people, for you live and reign with God the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever. Amen.