Advent Weekday / Nicholas, Bishop
First Reading: Isaiah 35: 1-10
1 The land that was desolate and impassable shall be glad, and the wilderness shall rejoice, and shall flourish like the lily.
2 It shall bud forth and blossom, and shall rejoice with joy and praise: the glory of Libanus is given to it: the beauty of Carmel, and Saron, they shall see the glory of the Lord, and the beauty of our God.
3 Strengthen ye the feeble hands, and confirm the weak knees.
4 Say to the fainthearted: Take courage, and fear not: behold your God will bring the revenge of recompense: God himself will come and will save you.
5 Then shall the eyes of the blind be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.
6 Then shall the lame man leap as a hart, and the tongue of the dumb shall be free: for waters are broken out in the desert, and streams in the wilderness.
7 And that which was dry land, shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water. In the dens where dragons dwell before, shall rise up the verdure of the reed and the bulrush.
8 And a path and a way shall be there, and it shall be called the holy way: the unclean shall not pass over it, and this shall be unto you a straight way, so that fools shall not err therein.
9 No lion shall be there, nor shall any mischievous beast go up by it, nor be found there: but they shall walk there that shall be delivered.
10 And the redeemed of the Lord shall return, and shall come into Sion with praise, and everlasting joy shall be upon their heads: they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and mourning shall flee away.
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 85: 9ab and 10, 11-12, 13-14
9 I will hear what the Lord God will speak in me: for he will speak peace unto his people: And unto his saints: and unto them that are converted to the heart.
10 Surely his salvation is near to them that fear him: that glory may dwell in our land.
11 Mercy and truth have met each other: justice and peace have kissed.
12 Truth is sprung out of the earth: and justice hath looked down from heaven.
13 For the Lord will give goodness: and our earth shall yield her fruit.
14 Justice shall walk before him: and shall set his steps in the way.
Gospel: Luke 5: 17-26
17 And it came to pass on a certain day, as he sat teaching, that there were also Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, that were come out of every town of Galilee, and Judea and Jerusalem: and the power of the Lord was to heal them.
18 And behold, men brought in a bed a man, who had the palsy: and they sought means to bring him in, and to lay him before him.
19 And when they could not find by what way they might bring him in, because of the multitude, they went up upon the roof, and let him down through the tiles with his bed into the midst before Jesus.
20 Whose faith when he saw, he said: Man, thy sins are forgiven thee.
21 And the scribes and Pharisees began to think, saying: Who is this who speaketh blasphemies? Who can forgive sins, but God alone?
22 And when Jesus knew their thoughts, answering, he said to them: What is it you think in your hearts?
23 Which is easier to say, Thy sins are forgiven thee; or to say, Arise and walk?
24 But that you may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (he saith to the sick of the palsy,) I say to thee, Arise, take up thy bed, and go into thy house.
25 And immediately rising up before them, he took up the bed on which he lay; and he went away to his own house, glorifying God.
26 And all were astonished; and they glorified God. And they were filled with fear, saying: We have seen wonderful things today.