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The Everyday Prayer


 
printable version

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


Reading of the Word of God

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

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

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

1 Timothy 1, 1-7

Paul, apostle of Christ Jesus appointed by the command of God our Saviour and of Christ Jesus our hope,

to Timothy, true child of mine in the faith. Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and from Christ Jesus our Lord.

When I was setting out for Macedonia I urged you to stay on in Ephesus to instruct certain people not to spread wrong teaching

or to give attention to myths and unending genealogies; these things only foster doubts instead of furthering God's plan which is founded on faith.

The final goal at which this instruction aims is love, issuing from a pure heart, a clear conscience and a sincere faith.

Some people have missed the way to these things and turned to empty speculation,

trying to be teachers of the Law; but they understand neither the words they use nor the matters about which they make such strong assertions.

 

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

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

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

After the first imprisonment in Rome (61-63), during a missionary trip, Paul had left Timothy in Ephesus as his representative and head of the Christian community. Paul had been there three years, from 54 to 57 (Acts 19); thereafter, taking leave of the elders, in the trip to Jerusalem, he exhorted them to watchfulness (Acts 20:31). On that occasion he had already predicted, "After I have gone ... Some even from your own group will come distorting the truth in order to entice the disciples to follow them" (Acts 20:30). He had thus urged Timothy to take a decisive stance against those who preached opinions far removed from the Gospel. The Letter, even though addressed to Timothy, is intended for the whole community, which, because of the false teachers, risks falling away from the "divine training." Paul, invoking his apostolic authority, asks everyone to listen to Timothy as if it were he himself, not only because he is truly linked to him, as he writes to the Philippians: "I have no one like him who will be genuinely concerned for your welfare. All of them are seeking their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ. But Timothy’s worth you know, how like a son with a father he has served with me in the work of the gospel" (2:20-22). But also because, through the link with the apostle, Timothy refers to "God our Saviour" and to "Christ Jesus our hope." Paul thus clarifies the meaning of authority in the Christian community. The one who is placed as guide has the task of serving, in God’s name, the unity of all in keeping the Gospel of love so that it may be communicated to all. This is why Timothy must oppose those in the community who spread "myths and endless genealogies." In this way people lose themselves in "speculations" and wander far from "the divine training that is known by faith." Paul adds that the "aim of such instruction" - that is the very mission of the entire Christian community throughout the centuries - is love (agape)," that is the very love of God that we should live and communicate to the world. It is obvious that the growth of resentments and the spreading of fights make communion difficult among brothers and sisters and the mission of the community. The Gospel was communicated to the brothers and sisters of the community so that God’s love would grow among all. Such love - agape - does not come from a human attitude and it is not a natural attribute of human beings, but instead is a gift that we receive from God. Agape is a love that does not know any limit and does not demand reciprocity, as it is totally gratuitous. When the apostle writes that agape comes "from a pure heart, a good conscience, and sincere faith", he wants to clarify that it is the love God puts in our hearts through his Spirit. To the Corinthians, he wrote that without love we are like "a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal" (1 Cor 13:1). This always happens when, forgetting that we are disciples, we pose as "doctors of the law," and we seek our interests and not those of Christ. Arrogance and self-assurance are the seeds that corrupt the life of the community, because they threaten it in its very core: love.


03/05/2012
Prayer for the Sick


Calendar of the week
NOV
27
Sunday, 27 November
Liturgy of the Sunday
NOV
28
Monday, 28 November
Memory of the Poor
NOV
29
Tuesday, 29 November
Memory of the Mother of the Lord
NOV
30
Wednesday, 30 November
Memory of the Apostles
DEC
1
Thursday, 1 December
Memory of the Church
DEC
2
Friday, 2 December
Memory of Jesus crucified
DEC
3
Saturday, 3 December
Sunday Vigil
DEC
4
Sunday, 4 December
Liturgy of the Sunday

Per Natale, regala il Natale! Aiutaci a preparare un vero pranzo in famiglia per i nostri amici più poveri