Wednesday of the Nineteenth Week in Ordinary Time
August 12, 2020
Today, in God’s Lavish Mercy, we pray with Psalm 113, a magnificent hymn praising God in the heavens.
The psalm is commonly used at Vespers, the evening prayer of the Church – and no wonder. How often in the evening do we look to the glorious skies, emblazoned with the setting sun, and turn our minds to God!
Who is like the LORD, our God, who is enthroned on high,
and looks upon the heavens and the earth below?
It is in contemplating the sky’s immensity that we begin to appreciate the Divine Infinity.
Last night, I FaceTimed with my niece and her toddler boy, a joy she frequently offers me. During the call, my grandnephew carried his little tablet to the window, opened his “SkyView” app, and began exploring the heavens. Even the youngest “pueri” (Latin for “boys, children, servants”) spontaneously offer our Vespers in answer to God’s Beauty!
As we pray this psalm, at whatever time of day, we can let ourselves rest in silent awe, aware of God’s majesty – that Majesty which deigns to create, love and eternally sustain each one of us beloved “pueri”.
Poetry: Stars by Majorie Pickthall
Now in the West the slender moon lies low,
And now Orion glimmers through the trees,
Clearing the earth with even pace and slow,
And now the stately-moving Pleiades,
In that soft infinite darkness overhead
Hang jewel-wise upon a silver thread.
And all the lonelier stars that have their place,
Calm lamps within the distant southern sky,
And planet-dust upon the edge of space,
Look down upon the fretful world, and I
Look up to outer vastness unafraid
And see the stars which sang when earth was made.
Music: Laudate Pueri – Claudio Monteverdi
Laudate, pueri, Dominum;
laudate nomen Domini.
Sit nomen Domini benedictum
ex hoc nunc et usque in saeculum.
A solis ortu usque ad occasum
laudabile nomen Domini.
Excelsus super omnes gentes Dominus,
et super caelos gloria ejus.
Quis sicut Dominus Deus noster,
qui in altis habitat,
et humilia respicit in caelo et in terra?
Suscitans a terra inopem,
et de stercore erigens pauperem:
ut collocet eum cum principibus,
cum principibus populi sui.
Qui habitare facit sterilem in domo,
matrem filiorum laetantem.