Readings For Wednesday 20Th Week In Ordinary Time

Year 1

First Reading
Ez 34:1-11

I will save my sheep, that they may no longer be food for their mouths.

A reading from the Book of the Prophet Ezekiel

The word of the Lord came to me:
   Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel,
   in these words prophesy to them to the shepherds:
   Thus says the Lord GOD: Woe to the shepherds of Israel
   who have been pasturing themselves!
Should not shepherds, rather, pasture sheep?
You have fed off their milk, worn their wool,
   and slaughtered the fatlings,
   but the sheep you have not pastured.
You did not strengthen the weak nor heal the sick
   nor bind up the injured.
You did not bring back the strayed nor seek the lost,
   but you lorded it over them harshly and brutally.
So they were scattered for the lack of a shepherd,
   and became food for all the wild beasts.
My sheep were scattered
   and wandered over all the mountains and high hills;
   my sheep were scattered over the whole earth,
   with no one to look after them or to search for them.

Therefore, shepherds, hear the word of the LORD:
   As I live, says the Lord GOD,
   because my sheep have been given over to pillage,
   and because my sheep have become food for every wild beast,
   for lack of a shepherd;
   because my shepherds did not look after my sheep,
   but pastured themselves and did not pasture my sheep;
   because of this, shepherds, hear the word of the LORD:
   Thus says the Lord GOD:
   I swear I am coming against these shepherds.
I will claim my sheep from them
   and put a stop to their shepherding my sheep
   so that they may no longer pasture themselves.
I will save my sheep,
   that they may no longer be food for their mouths.

For thus says the Lord GOD:
   I myself will look after and tend my sheep.


Responsorial Psalm
Ps. 23:1-3a, 3b-4, 5, 6

R. :

R. (1) The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
   In verdant pastures he gives me repose;
Beside restful waters he leads me;
   he refreshes my soul.

R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

He guides me in right paths
   for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk in the dark valley
   I fear no evil; for you are at my side
With your rod and your staff
   that give me courage.

R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

You spread the table before me
   in the sight of my foes;
You anoint my head with oil;
   my cup overflows.

R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

Only goodness and kindness will follow me
   all the days of my life;
And I shall dwell in the house of the LORD
   for years to come.

R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

Year 2

First Reading
Jgs 9:6-15

It is said: The king will reign over us, when the LORD God reigns among you (1 Samuel 12:12).

A reading from the Book of Judges

All the citizens of Shechem and all Beth-millo came together
   and proceeded to make Abimelech king
   by the terebinth at the memorial pillar in Shechem.

When this was reported to him,
   Jotham went to the top of Mount Gerizim and, standing there,
   cried out to them in a loud voice:
   “Hear me, citizens of Shechem, that God may then hear you!
Once the trees went to anoint a king over themselves.
So they said to the olive tree, ‘Reign over us.’
But the olive tree answered them, ‘Must I give up my rich oil,
   whereby men and gods are honored,
   and go to wave over the trees?’
Then the trees said to the fig tree, ‘Come; you reign over us!’
But the fig tree answered them,
   ‘Must I give up my sweetness and my good fruit,
   and go to wave over the trees?’
Then the trees said to the vine, ‘Come you, and reign over us.’
But the vine answered them,
   ‘Must I give up my wine that cheers gods and men,
   and go to wave over the trees?’
Then all the trees said to the buckthorn, ‘Come; you reign over us!’
But the buckthorn replied to the trees,
   ‘If you wish to anoint me king over you in good faith,
   come and take refuge in my shadow.
Otherwise, let fire come from the buckthorn
   and devour the cedars of Lebanon.’”


Responsorial Psalm
21:2-3, 4-5, 6-7

R. :

R. (2a) Lord, in your strength the king is glad.

O LORD, in your strength the king is glad;
   in your victory how greatly he rejoices!
You have granted him his heart’s desire;
   you refused not the wish of his lips.

R. Lord, in your strength the king is glad.

For you welcomed him with goodly blessings,
   you placed on his head a crown of pure gold.
He asked life of you: you gave him
   length of days forever and ever.

R. Lord, in your strength the king is glad.

Great is his glory in your victory;
   majesty and splendor you conferred upon him.
You made him a blessing forever,
   you gladdened him with the joy of your face.

R. Lord, in your strength the king is glad.


Gospel Acclamation
Heb 4:12

R. Alleluia, alleluia.

The word of God is living and effective,
able to discern the reflections and thoughts of the heart.

R. Alleluia, alleluia.


Gospel
Mt 20:1-16

Are you envious because I am generous?

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew

Jesus told his disciples this parable:
“The Kingdom of heaven is like a landowner
   who went out at dawn to hire laborers for his vineyard.
After agreeing with them for the usual daily wage,
   he sent them into his vineyard.
Going out about nine o’clock,
   he saw others standing idle in the marketplace,
   and he said to them, ‘You too go into my vineyard,
   and I will give you what is just.’
So they went off.
And he went out again around noon,
   and around three o’clock, and did likewise.
Going out about five o’clock,
   he found others standing around, and said to them,
   ‘Why do you stand here idle all day?’
They answered, ‘Because no one has hired us.’
He said to them, ‘You too go into my vineyard.’
When it was evening the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman,
   ‘Summon the laborers and give them their pay,
   beginning with the last and ending with the first.’
When those who had started about five o’clock came,
   each received the usual daily wage.
So when the first came, they thought that they would receive more,
   but each of them also got the usual wage.
And on receiving it they grumbled against the landowner, saying,
   ‘These last ones worked only one hour,
   and you have made them equal to us,
   who bore the day’s burden and the heat.’
He said to one of them in reply,
   ‘My friend, I am not cheating you.
Did you not agree with me for the usual daily wage?
Take what is yours and go.
What if I wish to give this last one the same as you?
Or am I not free to do as I wish with my own money?
Are you envious because I am generous?’
Thus, the last will be first, and the first will be last.”

At the end of the Gospel, the Deacon, or the Priest, acclaims:

The Gospel of the Lord.

All reply:

Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

Then he kisses the book, saying quietly:

Through the words of the Gospel
may our sins be wiped away.

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