Week I: Wednesday

“On this mountain the LORD of hosts will provide for all peoples a feast of rich food and choice wines, juicy, rich food and pure, choice wines.” (Isaiah 25:6.)

Saint Cyril of Jerusalem comments on this verse from the First Reading proclaimed at Mass today:

“Having been counted worthy of this holy chrism, you are called Christians, verifying the name also by your new birth. For before you were deemed worthy of this grace, you had properly no right to this title but were advancing on your way toward being Christians.

Moreover, you shall know that in the old Scripture there lies the symbol of this chrism. For at the time Moses imparted to his brother the command of God and made him high priest, he anointed him after bathing him in water. And Aaron was called Christ or anointed, evidently from the typical anointing. So also the high priest, in advancing Solomon to the kingdom, anointed him after he had bathed in Gihon. To them, however, these things happened in a figure, but to you not in a figure but in truth; because you were truly anointed by the Holy Spirit. Christ is the beginning of your salvation. He is truly the first fruit, and you are what follow. If the first fruit is holy, obviously its holiness will pass to the remainder also.

Keep this teaching unspotted, for it shall teach you all things, if it abide in you. For this holy thing is a spiritual safeguard of the body and salvation of the soul. Of this the blessed Isaiah prophesying of old time said, “On this mountain shall the Lord make for all nations a feast; they shall drink wine, they shall drink gladness, they shall anoint themselves with ointment.” (Catechetical Lectures, 11.)

Prepare our hearts, we pray,
O Lord our God,
by your divine power,
so that at the coming of
Christ your Son
we may be found worthy
of the banquet of eternal life
and merit to receive
heavenly nourishment from his hands.
Who lives and reigns with You
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Glory to the Father
and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning,
is now, and will be forever. Amen