Feast of the Conversion of St Paul- 25 January

Introitus
2 Tim 1:12
Scio, cui crédidi, et certus sum, quia potens est depósitum meum serváre in illum diem, iustus iudex
Ps 138:1-2
Dómine, probásti me et cognovísti me: tu cognovísti sessiónem meam et resurrectiónem meam.

I know Whom I have believed, and I am certain that He is able to guard the trust committed to me, against that day; being a just Judge.
Ps 138:1-2
O Lord, You have probed me and You know me; You know when I sit and when I stand.

Collect

Deus, qui univérsum mundum beáti Pauli Apóstoli prædicatióne docuísti: da nobis, quǽsumus; ut, qui eius hódie Conversiónem cólimus, per eius ad te exémpla gradiámur.
Pro S. Petro
Deus, qui beáto Petro Apostolo tuo, collátis clávibus regni coeléstis, ligandi atque solvéndi pontifícium tradidísti: concéde; ut, intercessiónis eius auxílio, a peccatórum nostrórum néxibus liberémur:

O God, Who taught the whole world by the preaching of Your blessed Apostle Paul, grant, we beseech You, that we who today celebrate his conversion may draw nearer to You by way of example.
For ST. PETER
O God, Who, when giving blessed Peter, Your Apostle, the keys of the heavenly kingdom, bestowed on him the power of binding and loosing, grant that by the help of his intercession we may be delivered from the bonds of our sins.

Lectio
Léctio Actuum Apostolórum.
Act 9:1-22
In diébus illis: Saulus adhuc spirans minárum et cædis in discípulos Dómini, accés sit ad príncipem sacerdótum, et pétiit ab eo epístolas in Damáscum ad synagógas: ut, si quos invenísset huius viæ viros ac mulíeres, vinctos perdúceret in Ierúsalem. Et cum iter fáceret, cóntigit, ut appropinquáret Damásco: et súbito circumfúlsit eum lux de coelo. Et cadens in terram, audívit vocem dicéntem sibi: Saule, Saule, quid me perséqueris? Qui dixit: Quis es, Dómine? Et ille: Ego sum Iesus, quem tu perséqueris: durum est tibi contra stímulum calcitráre. Et tremens ac stupens, dixit: Dómine, quid me vis fácere? Et Dóminus ad eum: Surge et ingrédere civitátem, et ibi dicétur tibi, quid te opórteat fácere. Viri autem illi, qui comitabántur cum eo, stabant stupefácti, audiéntes quidem vocem, néminem autem vidéntes. Surréxit autem Saulus de terra, apertísque óculis nihil vidébat. Ad manus autem illum trahéntes, introduxérunt Damáscum. Et erat ibi tribus diébus non videns, et non manducávit neque bibit. Erat autem quidam discípulus Damásci, nómine Ananías: et dixit ad illum in visu Dóminus: Ananía. At ille ait: Ecce ego, Dómine. Et Dóminus ad eum: Surge et vade in vicum, qui vocátur Rectus: et quære in domo Iudæ Saulum nómine Tarsénsem: ecce enim orat. Et vidit virum, Ananíam nómine, introeúntem et imponéntem sibi manus, ut visum recipiat. Respóndit autem Ananías: Dómine, audívi a multis de viro hoc, quanta mala fécerit sanctis tuis in Ierúsalem: et hic habet potestátem a princípibus sacerdótum alligándi omnes, qui ínvocant nomen tuum. Dixit autem ad eum Dóminus: Vade, quóniam vas electiónis est mihi iste, ut portet nomen meum coram géntibus et régibus et fíliis Israël. Ego enim osténdam illi, quanta opórteat eum pro nómine meo pati. Et ábiit Ananías et introívit in domum: et impónens ei manus, dixit: Saule frater, Dóminus misit me Iesus, qui appáruit tibi in via, qua veniébas, ut vídeas et impleáris Spíritu Sancto. Ei conféstim cecidérunt ab óculis eius tamquam squamæ, et visum recépit: et surgens baptizátus est. Et cum accepísset cibum, confortátus est. Fuit autem cum discípulis, qui erant Damásci, per dies áliquot. Et contínuo in synagógis prædicábat Iesum, quóniam hic est Fílius Dei. Stupébant autem omnes, qui audiébant, et dicébant: Nonne hic est, qui expugnábat in Ierúsalem eos, qui invocábant nomen istud: et huc ad hoc venit, ut vinctos illos dúcere ad príncipes sacerdótum? Saulus autem multo magis convalescébat, et confundébat Iudaeos, qui habitábant Damásci, affírmans, quóniam hic est Christus.
R. Deo gratias.

In those days, Saul, still breathing threats of slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues at Damascus, that if he found any men or women belonging to this Way, he might bring them in bonds to Jerusalem. And as he went on his journey, it came to pass that he drew near to Damascus, when suddenly a light from heaven shone round about him; and falling to the ground, he heard a voice saying to him, Saul, Saul, why do you persecute Me? And he said, Who are You, Lord? And He said, I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. It is hard for you to kick against the goad. And he, trembling and amazed, said, Lord, what will You have me do? And the Lord said to him, Arise and go into the city, and it will be told you what you must do. Now the men who journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing indeed the voice, but seeing no one. And Saul arose from the ground, but when his eyes were opened, he could see nothing. And leading him by the hand, they brought him into Damascus. And for three days he could not see, and he neither ate nor drank. Now there was in Damascus a certain disciple named Ananias and the Lord said to him in a vision, Ananias. And he said, Here I am, Lord. And the Lord said to him, Arise and go to the street called Straight and ask at the house of Judas for a man of Tarsus named Saul. For behold, he is praying. And he saw a man named Ananias come in and lay his hands upon him that he might recover his sight. But Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he has done to Your saints in Jerusalem. And here too he has authority from the high priests to arrest all who invoke Your name. But the Lord said to him, Go, for this man is a chosen vessel to Me, to carry My name among nations and kings and the children of Israel. For I will show him how much he must suffer for My name. So Ananias departed and entered the house, and laying his hands upon him, he said, Brother Saul, the Lord has sent me – Jesus, Who appeared to you on your journey – that you may recover your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit. And straightway there fell from his eyes something like scales, and he recovered his sight, and arose, and was baptized. And after taking some food, he regained his strength. Now for some days he joined the disciples in Damascus, and straightway in the synagogues he began to preach that Jesus is the Son of God. And all who heard him were amazed and said, Is not this he who used to make havoc in Jerusalem of those who called upon this name, and who has come here for the purpose of taking them in bonds to the chief priests? But Saul grew all the stronger and confounded the Jews who were living in Damascus, proving that this is the Christ.

Graduale
Gal 2:8; 2:9
Qui operátus est Petro in apostolátum, operátus est ei mihi inter gentes: et cognovérunt grátiam Dei, quæ data est mihi.
V. Grátia Dei in me vácua non fuit: sed grátia eius semper in me manet. Allelúia, allelúia.
V. Magnus sanctus Paulus, vas electiónis, vere digne est glorificándus, qui et méruit thronum duodécimum possídere. Allelúia.

He Who worked in Peter for the apostleship, worked also in me among the Gentiles: and they recognized the grace of God that was given to me.
V. The grace of God in me has not been fruitless; but His grace always remains in me. Alleluia, alleluia.
V. A great saint is Paul, a vessel of election, he is indeed worthy to be glorified, for he was made worthy to sit upon one of the twelve thrones. Alleluia.

Secret

Apóstoli tui Pauli précibus, Dómine, plebis tuæ dona sanctífica: ut, quæ tibi tuo grata sunt institúto, gratióra fiant patrocínio supplicántis.
Pro S. Petro
Ecclésiæ tuæ, quǽsumus, Dómine, preces et hóstias beáti Petri Apóstoli comméndet orátio: ut, quod pro illíus glória celebrámus, nobis prosit ad véniam.

O Lord, make holy the offerings of Your people, through the prayer of Paul, Your Apostle, that those things which You have established as pleasing to You may be more pleasing through his patronal intercession.
For ST. PETER
We beseech You, Lord, may the prayer of the blessed Apostle Peter recommend the petitions and offerings of Your Church, so that what we celebrate in his honor may obtain forgiveness for us.

January 25.—THE CONVERSION OF ST. PAUL.

THE great apostle Paul, named Saul at his circumcision, was born at Tarsus, the capital of Silicia, and was by privilege a Roman citizen, to which quality a great distinction and several exemptions were granted by the laws of the empire. He was early instructed in the strict observance of the Mosaic law, and lived up to it in the most scrupulous manner. In his zeal for the Jewish law, which he thought the cause of God, he became a violent persecutor of the Christians. He was one of those who combined to murder St. Stephen, and in the violent persecution of the faithful which followed the martyrdom of the holy deacon, Saul signalized himself above others. By virtue of the power he had received from the high priest, he dragged the Christians out of their houses, loaded them with chains, and thrust them into prison. In the fury of his zeal he applied for a commission to take up all Jews at Damascus who confessed Jesus Christ, and bring them bound to Jerusalem, that they might serve as examples forthe others. But God was pleased to show forth in him His patience and mercy. While on his way to Damascus, he and his party were surrounded by a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, and suddenly struck to the ground. And then a voice was heard saying, “Saul, Saul, why dost thou persecute Me?” And Saul answered, “Who art Thou, Lord?” and the voice replied, “I am Jesus, Whom thou dost persecute.” This mild expostulation of Our Redeemer, accompanied with a powerful interior grace, cured Saul’s pride, assuaged his rage, and wrought at once a total change in him. Wherefore, trembling and astonished, he cried out, “Lord, what wilt Thou have me to do?” Our Lord ordered him to arise and to proceed on his way to the city, where he should be informed of what was expected from him. Saul, arising from the ground, found that, though his eyes were open, he saw nothing. He was led by hand into Damascus, where he was lodged in the house of a Jew named Judas. To this house came by divine appointment a holy man named Ananias, who, laying his hands on Saul, said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, Who appeared to thee on thy journey, hath sent me that thou mayest receive thy sight and be filled with the Holy Ghost.” Immediately something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes, and he recovered his sight. Then he arose and was baptized; he stayed some few days with the disciples at Damascus, and began immediately to preach in the synagogues that Jesus was the Son of God. Thus a blasphemer and a persecutor was made an apostle, and chosen as one of God’s principal instruments in the con. version of the world.

Reflection.—Listen to the words of the “Imitation of Christ,” and let them sink into your heart: “He who would keep the grace of God, let him be grateful for grace when it is given, and patient when it is taken away. Let him pray that it may be given back to him, and be careful and humble, lest he lose it.”

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