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Prayer for the Evening

  Blessed is God who sows his word in our hearts: let us give him thanks and praise.   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!  


  Almighty God, your word is cast Like seed into the ground, Now let the dew of heav’n descend And righteous fruits abound.   Let not our selfishness and hate This holy seed remove, But give it root in ev’ry heart To bring forth fruits of love.   Let not the world’s deceitful cares The rising plant destroy, But let it yield a hundredfold The fruits of peace and joy.   And when the precious seed is sown Your quick’ning grace bestow, That all whose souls the truth receive Its saving pow’r may know.  

PSALM 104:13-15, 24, 33-34, 35b

  For just as from the heavens/ the rain and snow come down/ And do not return there/ till they have watered the earth,/ making it fertile and fruitful,/ So shall my word be/ that goes forth from my mouth. (cf. Is 55:10-11)   In Jesus’ day, a sower first scattered the seed, then plowed it under. No matter how unpromising the landscapes of our hearts, Jesus can transform them into good soil with the living rain of God’s mercy and a plowshare fashioned from the wood of the cross. Let us pray for the willingness to welcome his saving work.   From your dwelling you water the hills; earth drinks its fill of your gift. You make the grass grow for the cattle and the plants to serve man’s needs,   that he may bring forth bread from the earth and wine to cheer man’s heart; oil, to make him glad and bread to strengthen man’s heart.   How many are your works, O Lord! In wisdom you have made them all. The earth is full of your riches.   I will sing to the Lord all my life, make music to my God while I live. May my thoughts be pleasing to him. I find my joy in the Lord.   Bless the Lord, my soul.   Glory to the Father….  

Word of God (James 5:7-8)

  Be patient, therefore, brothers, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. You too must be patient. Make your hearts firm, because the coming of the Lord is at hand.   Let us fear the Lord, our God,/ Who gives us rain/ early and late, in its time;/ Who watches for us/ over the appointed weeks of harvest. (Jer 5:24)  


  The plowman should plow in hope, and the thresher in hope of receiving a share. (1 Cor 9:10)   My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit rejoices in God my Savior for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.   From this day all generations will call me blessed: the Almighty has done great things for me, and holy is his Name.   He has mercy on those who fear him in every generation.   He has shown the strength of his arm, he has scattered the proud in their conceit.   He has cast down the mighty from their thrones, and has lifted up the lowly.   He has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent away empty.   He has come to the help of his servant Israel for he has remembered his promise of mercy, the promise he made to our fathers, to Abraham and his children for ever.   Glory to the Father…  


  God desires to gather the harvest of holiness from the hearts in which he has sowed his Word with love. Let us pray:   R/You hear our prayers!   When we grow impatient with our own slow growth in holiness, – teach us to abide by your time and welcome your work in us: R/   When we lose hope of harvest because of the crushing weight of our sins, – renew us in hope, we pray: R/   When we cultivate in our hearts crops not of your sowing, – plow them under with the saving power of the cross and plant the soil anew: R/   (Personal intentions)   Our Father….   May the God of hope fill us with all joy and peace in believing, so that we may abound in hope by the power of the holy Spirit. Amen. (cf. Rom 15:13)  


  Antiphon for the Memorial of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, July 16, from the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite   Your head is like Carmel, and the hairs of your head, bound in tresses, even as royal purple, alleluia.     Salve, Regina, mater misericordiae; vita, dulcedo, et spes nostra, salve. Ad te clamamus, exsules filii Evae. Ad te suspiramus, gementes et flentes in hac lacrimarum valle.   Eia ergo, advocata nostra, illos tuos misericordes oculos ad nos converte. Et Iesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui, nobis post hoc exsilium ostende. O clemens, O pia, O dulcis Virgo Maria.     Hail, holy Queen, mother of mercy, our life, our sweetness, and our hope. To you do we cry, poor banished children of Eve. To you do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of tears. Turn then, O most gracious advocate, your eyes of mercy toward us, and after this our exile show unto us the blessed fruit of your womb, Jesus. O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.   V/ Pray for us, O holy Mother of God, R/ That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.


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Written by Raphael Benedict

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