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The Everyday Prayer

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Icon of the Holy Face
Church of Sant'Egidio, Rome

Reading of the Word of God

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

This is the Gospel of the poor,
liberation for the imprisoned,
sight for the blind,
freedom for the oppressed.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

John 15,26-16,4

When the Paraclete comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who issues from the Father, he will be my witness.

And you too will be witnesses, because you have been with me from the beginning.

I have told you all this so that you may not fall away.

They will expel you from the synagogues, and indeed the time is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is doing a holy service to God.

They will do these things because they have never known either the Father or me.

But I have told you all this, so that when the time for it comes you may remember that I told you. I did not tell you this from the beginning, because I was with you;


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The Son of Man came to serve,
whoever wants to be great
should become servant of all.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Once again, the Lord reassures his friends: it is true that they will soon be separated, but that does not mean that they will be any further away from him. In fact, the love that has bound them and led them together all the way to Jerusalem will not end. After the dark times of his passion and death Jesus will gather them around him once again after his resurrection. Christian love does not end with the end of physical proximity. After Easter the disciples themselves are called to support each other and to testify to the world about the love that has united them to Jesus all this time. This love is a special gift that comes from on high; it grows when it is lived out and it diminishes, to the point of vanishing, when it is not practiced. The Spirit of love that comes from the Father and is transmitted to the disciples by the Son gives rise to the friendship and affection that tie them together with strong and stable bonds. The Lord explains that this testimony of love can also give rise to opposition and hostility from those who do not know it, to the point of putting the disciples’ very lives in danger. But the disciples should not lose faith in their Teacher, because Jesus does not leave his followers without resources: "I have said these things to you to keep you from stumbling." The Lord does not abandon his friends to their fate. Nonetheless, the disciples have a great responsibility: they must communicate the Gospel of gratuitous love to the world in order to keep it far from evil and sin and to help it find the way of salvation.

Memory of the Poor