We will sometimes interrupt our usual cycle of Sundays for this Feast, which therefore also interrupts the usual pattern of readings. Today all the readings harmonise with the central theme, which is, of course, the cross. There are many ways of looking at the cross: as an instrument of torture and shame, as an emblem of death and defeat. But in the Church there has always been a way of looking at the cross which the world cannot understand: it is to see it as a sign of victory, of triumph, as a banner or standard of the forces of good
and light as Jesus defeats the prince of this world by his death. The early Church depicted the cross as a richly jewelled emblem of victory; when the faithful looked at this jewelled cross, they knew that it was the sign of God’s love and the Victory over sin and death that had been won for them.
Today’s Scripture: (Psalter: Week 4)
Numbers 21: 4 – 9
Response: Psalm 77
Give heed, my people to my teaching;
turn your ear to the words of my mouth.
I will open my mouth in a parable
and reveal hidden lessons of the past.
When he slew them then they would seek him,
return and seek him in earnest.
They would remember that God was their rock,
God the Most High their redeemer.
But the words they spoke were mere flattery;
they lied to him with their lips.
For their hearts were not truly with him;
they were not faithful to his covenant.
Yet he who is full of compassion
forgave their sin and spared them.
So often he held back his anger
when he might have stirred up his rage.
Philippians 2: 6 – 11
Acclamation for the Gospel:
Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!
We adore you, O Christ,
and we bless you;
because by your cross
you have redeemed the world.
John 3: 13 – 17
Prayer of the Faithful: R/. Lord, lift us up.
Today’s Readings can be found on Catholic Online.