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The Everyday Prayer

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

Memory of St. Adalbert, bishop of Prague. He suffered martyrdom in eastern Prussia where he had gone to preach the Gospel (+997). He spent time in Rome, where his memory is venerated in the basilica of St. Bartholomew on the Tiberine Island.

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

Titus 3, 1-7

Remind them to be obedient to the officials in authority; to be ready to do good at every opportunity;

not to go slandering other people but to be peaceable and gentle, and always polite to people of all kinds.

There was a time when we too were ignorant, disobedient and misled and enslaved by different passions and dissipations; we lived then in wickedness and malice, hating each other and hateful ourselves.

But when the kindness and love of God our Saviour for humanity were revealed,

it was not because of any upright actions we had done ourselves; it was for no reason except his own faithful love that he saved us, by means of the cleansing water of rebirth and renewal in the Holy Spirit

which he has so generously poured over us through Jesus Christ our Saviour;

so that, justified by his grace, we should become heirs in hope of eternal life.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Paul urges Titus to remind Christians of their common duty to the authorities. Precisely because they are disciples of Jesus, they owe obedience and submission to the authorities, even if they are pagan. The apostle had already set out the foundations of this obedience in the Letter to the Romans when he affirmed that all authority comes from God. In the young community of Crete, the faithful lived among a pagan population and endured insults, scorn, and personal grudges. As disciples of Jesus Christ, they always had to demonstrate generous patience and devoted love. Evil is not repaid with evil, evil is defeated with love (Rom 12:20). The motivation for these benevolent feelings towards someone who offends can be found in the humble awareness that Christians have of themselves. Not too long ago, Christians were any different from the pagans. All men and women, in fact, are "foolish," lacking an orientation for their lives and become slaves of sin and death as it is evident in the dominion of passions that destroy the lives of individuals and community. Christians should never forget the condition of sin in which they lived and from which they were saved by grace; "when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Saviour appeared, he saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we have done, but according to his mercy" (vv. 4-5). If believers accept God’s love with faith and entrust themselves to Jesus, they are saved from ruin by the "water of rebirth." This is what it means to be "children of God" (Jn 1:12) and "born from above" (Jn 3:3). Related to this "water of rebirth" is the "renewal by the Holy Spirit...he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Saviour." Rebirth means the radical change that God works in the believer’s life. We all owe a debt of love to God because of what has happened within us. This is the source of the apostle’s rebuke, "What do you have that you did not receive? And if you received it, why do you boast as if it were not a gift?" (1 Cor 4:7). Along with the rebirth to a new life, we also receive another great gift, that of being "heirs according to the hope of eternal life." Paul writes to the Galatians that "through the water of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit" we have received "adoption as children....and God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, ‘Abba! Father!’...and if we are children we are also heirs through God" (Gal 4:5-7).

Memory of the Poor