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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

The Spirit of the Lord is upon you.
The child you shall bear will be holy.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

John 16,5-11

but now I am going to the one who sent me. Not one of you asks, 'Where are you going?'

Yet you are sad at heart because I have told you this.

Still, I am telling you the truth: it is for your own good that I am going, because unless I go, the Paraclete will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.

And when he comes, he will show the world how wrong it was, about sin, and about who was in the right, and about judgement:

about sin: in that they refuse to believe in me;

about who was in the right: in that I am going to the Father and you will see me no more;

about judgement: in that the prince of this world is already condemned.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Look down, O Lord, on your servants.
Be it unto us according to your word.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

In this gospel passage Jesus once again announces his departure. He had just spoken about it to his disciples, but even if Peter, Thomas, and Judas Thaddeus questioned their Teacher about it before, now no one dares ask him where he is going. Sadness has filled their hearts. Indeed, how could they not be sad, given that Jesus keeps insisting he is about to leave? The Lord sees how sad they are and lovingly tells them: "But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your hearts. Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you." Jesus does not abandon his disciples to their fate; he will send the Holy Spirit to sustain them, console them, comfort them, guard them, and illuminate them. A new time is beginning for the disciples and all those who will believe because of their preaching. The Holy Spirit will assure that the evangelical words that Jesus has spoken to them during the three years he has been with them are alive and effective. They will be able to count on the strength and help of the Spirit during the difficult moments they will have to face. He will help them overcome every test. Jesus’ words might seem obscure or harsh to the disciples, as we, too, often experience when we are faced with the Word of God. We need to listen to the Word illuminated by the Spirit if we want to grasp its deeper meaning and let it touch our hearts. Love and faith permit the words we hear to shape our lives and unleash their transforming energy. This is the discovery we make every time we approach the Gospel with open minds and hearts, without hiding our need to be guided and corrected by a loving word.

Memory of the Mother of the Lord