OLD TESTAMENT (Second Reading)
A Reading from the Book of Sirach
My child, when you come to serve the Lord,
prepare yourself for trials.
Be sincere of heart and steadfast,
and do not be impetuous in time of adversity.
Cling to him,
do not leave him,
that you may prosper in your last days.
Accept whatever happens to you;
in periods of humiliation be patient.
For in fire gold is tested,
and the chosen,
in the crucible of humiliation.
Trust in God, and he will help you;
make your ways straight and hope in him.
You that fear the Lord,
wait for his mercy,
do not stray lest you fall.
You that fear the Lord, trust in him,
and your reward will not be lost.
You that fear the LORD,
hope for good things,
for lasting joy and mercy.
Consider the generations long past and see:
has anyone trusted in the Lord
and been disappointed?
Has anyone persevered in his fear and been forsaken?
Has anyone called upon him and been ignored?
For the Lord is compassionate and merciful;
forgives sins and saves in time of trouble.
The Word of the Lord