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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

You are a chosen race,
a royal priesthood, a holy nation,
a people acquired by God
to proclaim his marvellous works.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Ephesians 1, 3-14

Blessed be God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all the spiritual blessings of heaven in Christ.

Thus he chose us in Christ before the world was made to be holy and faultless before him in love,

marking us out for himself beforehand, to be adopted sons, through Jesus Christ. Such was his purpose and good pleasure,

to the praise of the glory of his grace, his free gift to us in the Beloved,

in whom, through his blood, we gain our freedom, the forgiveness of our sins. Such is the richness of the grace

which he has showered on us in all wisdom and insight.

He has let us know the mystery of his purpose, according to his good pleasure which he determined beforehand in Christ,

for him to act upon when the times had run their course: that he would bring everything together under Christ, as head, everything in the heavens and everything on earth.

And it is in him that we have received our heritage, marked out beforehand as we were, under the plan of the One who guides all things as he decides by his own will,

chosen to be, for the praise of his glory, the people who would put their hopes in Christ before he came.

Now you too, in him, have heard the message of the truth and the gospel of your salvation, and having put your trust in it you have been stamped with the seal of the Holy Spirit of the Promise,

who is the pledge of our inheritance, for the freedom of the people whom God has taken for his own, for the praise of his glory.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

You will be holy,
because I am holy, thus says the Lord.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The apostle begins his letter with a hymn of blessing. He sings of the Lord’s greatness when, with eyes of faith, he contemplates the plan of salvation God conceived for the whole universe. The three persons of the Trinity work together: the Father, the origin and advocate of this salvific plan, the Christ, the mediator through whom He makes the plan real and the Holy Spirit that orients everything towards its final fulfilment. The blessing is directed to God because He has blessed us with "every spiritual blessing." Generally, we are the ones who ask God for his blessing, but here it is the apostle who is blessing the Father for the love with which he has loved us. This love is a blessing for us. In fact, we have been chosen by God from the beginning of eternity and chosen "in Christ," that is, as members of his community of disciples. God never thought of Christ without the Church, and so he has never thought of us without the community. This is the source of our gratitude to the Lord, knowing that we "exist" because we are personally loved by Him and destined to be "holy and blameless." The aim of the Incarnation of the Son is to "gather up" all things in Jesus. With the resurrection, the Crucified One is placed at the head of creation. In him the entire universe and human history find cohesion and significance. He brings to fulfilment the dream of unity present in God's plan from the beginning of creation: we all come from God and to God we all must return. Jesus revealed this plan in an entirely new way when he called God his "father." In the risen Son, God opened up his paternity to all men and women. We believers, therefore who already live in the Risen One can say that the Father has already taken us into "heaven," where Christ is found. This is why the fight against the powers of evil is not in vain; the believer already participates in the final victory of Christ and knows that nothing can ever separate him or her from the love of God. In Christ, God conceived, carried out, and brought to conclusion the entire plan of salvation. He is the Alpha because he is the Omega; he was at the origin of all things and now he gathers all things in himself. The "promised Holy Spirit," promised to the prophets (Cf. Ez 36:25ff) is also given to us believers as a "pledge" (v. 14), a down payment and in anticipation of the fulfilment of the divine work in our favour.

Memory of the Saints and the Prophets