Podcast: 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C

Hi and welcome to the Modern Psalmist Podcast. I’m Rebecca De La Torre.

This weekend we’re celebrating the 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time, cycle C. Several of the readings for this solemnity encourage us to turn to the Lord when we face difficult times, because the Lord is merciful in answering our call.

Psalm 40:
Lord, come to my aid!

Communion Antiphon:
With the Lord there is mercy;
in him is plentiful redemption.
(Psalm 130:7)

Featured Songs:

“Psalm 40: Lord, Come to My Aid” (Rebecca De La Torre)
https://themodernpsalmist.com/songs/psalm-40-lord-come-to-my-aid/

Communion Antiphon: Psalm 130:7 (Rebecca De La Torre)
https://themodernpsalmist.com/songs/communion-antiphon-20th-ot/

“O Lord, Hear My Prayer” (Jacques Berthier)
Words and Music – ©Ateliers et Presses de Taizé, 71250 Taizé, France. Performed with permission under ONE LICENSE #M-401427. All rights reserved.
https://themodernpsalmist.com/songs/o-lord-hear-my-prayer/


Featured Songs




Podcast Transcript

Hi and welcome to the Modern Psalmist Podcast. I’m Rebecca De La Torre.

This weekend we’re celebrating the 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time, cycle C. Several of the readings for this solemnity encourage us to turn to the Lord when we face difficult times, because the Lord is merciful in answering our call.

The psalm for today, attributed to King David, is from chapter 40. The response pleads:

“Lord, come to my aid!”

One thing I love about the psalms is that, within all 150 of them, the full range of human emotions is expressed. Many times I have found myself working on a musical composition for a psalm whose lyrics express in great detail my current emotional state.

I’m sure that was the case with Jeremiah, when he was thrown into the well as told in the first reading for this weekend, taken from Jeremiah chapter 38. In verse 6, we read:

“And so they took Jeremiah
and threw him into the cistern of Prince Malchiah,
which was in the quarters of the guard,
letting him down with ropes.
There was no water in the cistern, only mud,
and Jeremiah sank into the mud.”

Thankfully, at the end of the reading, in verse 10, the king gives Jeremiah’s allies permission to:

“draw the prophet Jeremiah out of the cistern before he should die.”

Our psalm today sounds like something Jeremiah would have written, even though it is attributed to King David whose reign was around 500 years before Jeremiah was born.

One verse tells us:

“The LORD heard my cry.
He drew me out of the pit of destruction”

And another verse states:

“Though I am afflicted and poor,
yet the LORD thinks of me.
You are my help and my deliverer”

That sounds like exactly what Jeremiah experienced. And this is the beauty of the psalms –

*All* of us have experienced the overwhelm and despair of the proverbial “pit of destruction” as expressed here in the words and music of “Psalm 40: Lord, Come to My Aid”

Psalm 40: Lord, Come to My Aid

The communion antiphon for today also reminds us that the Lord is merciful and will redeem us from our iniquities. Taken from Psalm chapter 130, verse 7, we read:

“With the Lord there is mercy;
in him is plentiful redemption.”

Communion Antiphon – 20th OT (Psalm 130:7)

Every soul struggling day by day to follow Christ certainly knows how it feels to have to wait on the Lord.

We face difficulty,
we pray for help and deliverance,
we wait….

and sometimes we wait a long time.

Although the Lord does promise us peace along the way, this is still a journey, and we need to be persistent in our prayers to the Lord for his almighty intervention. One form of prayer that I find helpful is the meditative musical form called Taizé. Most of the Taizé prayers consist of a simple, repeating refrain (also called “ostinato”).

One such song is a good fit for the readings for this weekend, titled “O Lord, Hear My Prayer” by Jacques Berthier from the Taizé community. Here is my interpretation of this beautiful, pleading, and most prayerful song.

O Lord, Hear My Prayer

That was “O Lord, Hear My Prayer” by Jacques Berthier for the 20th Sunday in Ordinary Time, cycle C.

As I always mention, you can find the links to the sheet music and recordings for all the songs on this and every other episode of the podcast in the show notes or on TheModernPsalmist.com.

Until next time, have a blessed week.