First Reading Choices

SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST FUNERAL READINGS CHOICES
(Other Scripture Texts may be used as well)

PLEASE NOTE: during the Easter Season (Easter Sunday to Pentecost) the Old Testament readings may not be used for the First Reading. The First Reading is then chosen from the B Section (Beginning on page 10).

FIRST READING CHOICES FROM THE OLD TESTAMENT:

OLD TESTAMENT READING #1
A reading from the book of Job (19:23-27)

Job answered and said:
Oh, would that my words were written down!
Would that they were inscribed in a record:
That with iron chisel and with lead
they were cut in the rock forever!
But as for me, I know that my Vindicator lives,
and that he will at last stand forth upon the dust;
Whom I myself shall see:
my own eyes, not another’s shall behold him,
And from my flesh I shall see God;
my inmost being is consumed with longing.

The Word of the Lord.

OLD TESTAMENT READING 2A (LONG FORM)
A reading from the book of Proverbs (31:10-31)

When one finds a worthy wife, her value is far beyond pearls.
Her husband, entrusting his heart to her, has an unfailing prize.
She brings him good, and not evil, all the days of her life.
She obtains wool and flax and makes cloth with skillful hands.
She rises while it is still night, and distributes food to her household.
She is girt about with strength, and sturdy are her arms.
She enjoys the success of her dealings; at night her lamp is undimmed.
She reaches out her hands to the poor, and extends her arms to the needy.
She fears not the snow for her household, all her charges are doubly clothed.
Her husband is prominent at the city gates as he sits with the elders of the land.
She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs at the days to come.
She opens her mouth in wisdom, and on her tongue is kindly counsel.
Her children rise up and praise her; her husband, too, extols her;
“Many are the women of proven worth, but you have excelled them all.”
Charm is deceptive and beauty fleeting;
The woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
Give her a reward of her labors, and let her works praise her at the city gates.

The Word of the Lord.

OLD TESTAMENT READING 2B (SHORT FORM)
A reading from the book of Proverbs (31:10-ff.)

When one finds a worthy wife, her value is far beyond pearls.
Her husband, entrusting his heart to her, has an unfailing prize.
She brings him good, and not evil, all the days of her life.
She obtains wool and flax and makes cloth with skillful hands.
She puts her hands to the distaff, and her fingers ply the spindle.
She reaches out her hands to the poor, and extends her arms to the
needy.

Charm is deceptive and beauty fleeting;
The woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
Give her a reward of her labors,
and let her works praise her at the city gates.

The Word of the Lord.

OLD TESTAMENT READING #3
A reading from the Book of Sirach (3:1-ff.)

Children listen to your father, do what I tell you, and so be safe;
For the Lord honors the father in his children,
and holds the rights of a mother over her sons.
Whoever respects his father is atoning for his sins;
he who honors his mother is like someone amassing a fortune.
Whoever respects his father will be happy with children of his own.
He shall be heard on the day when he prays.
Long life comes to him who honors his father,
He who sets his mother at ease is showing obedience to the Lord.
He serves his parents as he does his Lord.
Respect your father in deed as well as word,
so that blessing may come on you from him;
Since a father’s blessing makes the houses of his children firm.

The Word of the Lord.

OLD TESTAMENT READING #4A (LONG FORM)
A reading from the Book of Ecclesiastes (3:1-11)

There is a time for everything under heaven.
There is an appointed time for everything,
and a time for every affair under the heavens.

A time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to uproot the plant.

A time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to tear down, and a time to build.

A time to weep, and a time to laugh.
a time to mourn, and a time to dance.

A time to scatter stones, and a time to gather them;
a time to embrace, and a time to be far from embraces.

A time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away.

A time to rend, and a time to sew;
a time to be silent, and a time to speak.

A time to love, and a time to hate;
a time of war, and a time of peace.

What advantage has the worker from his toil? I have considered the task which
God has appointed us to be busied about. He has made every thing appropriate to
its time, and has put the timeless into their hearts, without our ever discovering,
from beginning to end, the work which God has done.

The Word of the Lord.

OLD TESTAMENT READING FORM #4B (SHORT FORM)
A reading from the Book of Ecclesiastes (3:1-11)

There is an appointed time for everything,
and a time for every affair under the heavens.

A time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to uproot the plant.

A time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to tear down, and a time to build.

A time to weep, and a time to laugh.
a time to mourn, and a time to dance.

A time to scatter stones, and a time to gather them;
a time to embrace, and a time to be far from embraces.

A time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away.

A time to rend, and a time to sew;
a time to be silent, and a time to speak.

A time to love, and a time to hate;
a time of war, and a time of peace.

The Word of the Lord.

OLD TESTAMENT READING #5
A reading from the Book of Wisdom (3:1-9)

The souls of the just are in the hand of God, and no torment shall touch
them. They seemed, in the view of the foolish, to be dead; and their
passing away was thought an affliction and their going forth from us,
utter destruction. But they are in peace.

For if before us, indeed, they be punished, now is their hope full of
immortality; chastised a little, they shall be greatly blessed because God
tried them and found them worthy of himself.

As gold in the furnace, he proved them, and as sacrificial offerings he
took them to himself. In the time of their visitation they shall shine, and
shall dart about as sparks through stubble; They shall judge nations and
rule over peoples, and the Lord shall be their King forever.

Those who trust in him shall understand truth, and the faithful shall
abide with him in love, because grace and mercy are with his holy ones,
and his care is with his elect.

The Word of the Lord.

OLD TESTAMENT READING #6
A reading from the Book of Wisdom (4:7-15)

The just ones, though they die early, shall be at rest. For the age that is
honorable comes not with the passing of time, nor can it be measured in
terms of years. Rather, understanding is the crown for us, and an
unsullied life, the attainment of old age.

The one who pleased God was loved; those who lived among sinners
were transported, snatched away, lest wickedness pervert their minds or
deceit beguile their souls.

Having become perfect in a short while, they reached the fullness of a
long career; for their souls were pleasing to the Lord, therefore He sped
them out of the midst of wickedness.

But the people saw and did not understand, nor did they take this into
account.

The Word of the Lord.

OLD TESTAMENT READING #7
A reading from the book of Sirach (44:10-15)

Now will I praise those godly people,
our ancestors, each in their own time.

These were godly people whose virtues have not been forgotten; Their
wealth remains in their families, their heritage with their descendants;
Through God’s covenant with them their family endures, their posterity,
for their sake.

And for all time their family will endure, their glory will never be
blotted out; Their bodies are peacefully laid away, but their name lives
on and on.
At gatherings their wisdom is retold, and the assembly proclaims their
praise.

The Word of the Lord.

OLD TESTAMENT READING #8
A reading from the book of the prophet Isaiah (25:6-9)

On this mountain the Lord of hosts
will provide for all peoples.
On this mountain he will destroy
the veil that veils all peoples,
The web that is woven over all nations;
he will destroy death forever.

The Lord will wipe away
the tears from all faces;
The reproach of his people he will remove
from the whole earth; for the Lord has spoken.

On that day it will be said:
“Behold our God, to whom we looked to save us!
This is the Lord for whom we looked;
let us rejoice and be glad that he saved us!”

The Word of the Lord.

OLD TESTAMENT READING #9
A reading from the book of Lamentations (3:17-26)

My soul is deprived of peace, I have forgotten what happiness is.
I tell myself my future is lost, all that I hoped for from the Lord.
The thought of my homeless poverty is wormwood and gall;
Remembering it over and over leaves my soul downcast within me.

But I will call this to mind, as my reason to have hope:
The favors of the Lord are not exhausted, his mercies are not spent;
They are renewed each morning, so great is his faithfulness.

My portion is the Lord, says my soul; therefore will I hope in him.

Good is the Lord to one who waits for him, to the soul that seeks him;
It is good to hope in silence for the saving help of the Lord.

The Word of the Lord.

OLD TESTAMENT READING #10
A reading from the book of Sirach (6:5-17)

When one finds a faithful friend,
His value is far beyond gold.
He is clothed with strength and dignity,
and he laughs at the days to come.
A faithful friend is a sturdy shelter;
He who finds one finds a treasure.
A faithful friend is beyond price,
No sum can balance his worth.
Let your acquaintances be many,
But one in a thousand your faithful friend.
For he who loves his friends behaves accordingly,
and his friends will be like himself.

The Word of the Lord
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B Selections: First Reading (New Testament) Only used during Easter Season. (The 50 days between Easter Sunday and Pentecost Sunday)

If your loved one passes away during the fifty days of the Easter season, Easter Sunday through Pentecost Sunday, you will need to choose one of the following readings from the New Testament for the first reading.

FIRST READING DURING THE EASTER SEASON #B1
Book: Acts of the Apostles, Chapter: 10, Verse: 34-43

A reading from the Acts of the Apostles

Peter proceeded to speak, saying:

“In truth, I see that God shows no partiality. Rather, in every nation whoever fears him and acts uprightly is acceptable to him. You know the word that he sent to the children of Israel as he proclaimed peace through Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all, what has happened all over Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John preached, how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power. He went about doing good and healing all those oppressed by the Devil, for God was with him. We are witnesses of all that he did both in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree. This man God raised on the third day and granted that he be visible, not to all the people, but to us, the witnesses chosen by God in advance, who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. He commissioned us to preach to the people and testify that he is the one appointed by God as judge of the living and the dead. To him all the prophets bear witness, that everyone who believes in him will receive forgiveness of sins through his name.”

The word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

FIRST READING DURING THE EASTER SEASON #B2
Acts of the Apostles, Chapter: 10, Verse: 34-36, 42-43

A reading from the Acts of the Apostles

Peter proceeded to speak, saying:

“In truth, I see that God shows no partiality. Rather, in every nation whoever fears him and acts uprightly is acceptable to him. You know the word that he sent to the children of Israel as he proclaimed peace through Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all. He commissioned us to preach to the people and testify that he is the one appointed by God as judge of the living and the dead. To him all the prophets bear witness, that everyone who believes in him will receive forgiveness of sins through his name.”

The word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

FIRST READING DURING THE EASTER SEASON #B3
Book: Revelation, Chapter: 14, Verse: 13

A reading from the Book of Revelation

I, John, heard a voice from heaven say, “Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.” “Yes,” said the Spirit, “let them find rest from their labors, for their works accompany them.”

The word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

FIRST READING DURING THE EASTER SEASON #B4
Book: Revelation, Chapter: 20, Verse: 11- Chapter 21, Verse: 1

A reading from the Book of Revelation

I, John, saw a large white throne and the one who was sitting on it. The earth and the sky fled from his presence and there was no place for them. I saw the dead, the great and the lowly, standing before the throne, and scrolls were opened. Then another scroll was opened, the book of life. The dead were judged according to their deeds, by what was written in the scrolls. The sea gave up its dead; then Death and Hades gave up their dead. All the dead were judged according to their deeds. Then Death and Hades were thrown into the pool of fire. (This pool of fire is the second death.) Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the pool of fire.

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth. The former heaven and the former earth had passed away, and the sea was no more.

The word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

FIRST READING DURING THE EASTER SEASON #B5
Book: Revelation, Chapter: 21, Verse:1-5a, 6b-7

A reading from the Book of Revelation

I, John, saw a new heaven and a new earth. The former heaven and the former earth had passed away, and the sea was no more, I also saw the holy city, a new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, God’s dwelling is with the human race. He will dwell with them and they will be his people and God himself will always be with them as their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there shall be no more death or mourning, wailing or pain, for the old order has passed away.”

The One who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give a gift from the spring of life-giving water. The victor will inherit these gifts, and I shall be his God, and he will be my son.”

The word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.