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The Everyday Prayer

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

Memory of St. Clare of Assisi (1193-1253), disciple of St. Francis, on the way to poverty and evangelic simplicity.

Reading of the Word of God

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Whoever lives and believes in me
will never die.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

1 John 2, 28-3,3

Therefore remain in him now, children, so that when he appears we may be fearless, and not shrink from him in shame at his coming.

If you know that he is upright you must recognise that everyone whose life is upright is a child of his.

You must see what great love the Father has lavished on us by letting us be called God's children -- which is what we are! The reason why the world does not acknowledge us is that it did not acknowledge him.

My dear friends, we are already God's children, but what we shall be in the future has not yet been revealed. We are well aware that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he really is.

Whoever treasures this hope of him purifies himself, to be as pure as he is.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

If you believe, you will see the glory of God,
thus says the Lord.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

John again exhorts the disciples to "abide" in Jesus. This is a theme dear to the apostle whom "Jesus loved," and it often appears in the pages of his gospel, as well as in this letter. Communion with Christ is a specific aspect of Christian love. John reassures the Christians that if they "abide" in Jesus they have nothing to fear, not even the final judgment (the "parusia" in Greek); they are already saved because they have been "born of him." In the Prologue to the Gospel we read, "But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave the power to become the children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God."(Jn 1:12-13). We are therefore children of God not only in name but in reality if we abide in Jesus, the firstborn Son. The apostle knows well that here we are entering into the heart of the mystery of God and urges us to contemplate this mystery, "See what love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and that is what we are." The love of God, which saves us from sin and death, makes Christians "incomprehensible" to the selfish and violent mentality of this world. Especially today being used to individualism and doing things by ourselves, together with a false idea of freedom, leads to reject the link with the Lord and with others. The sense of self-sufficiency and all-mightiness makes people in fact void of communion with God and others. There is a dimension of the Gospel that is irreducibly foreign to the world that demands that the disciples of Jesus give heroic witness to their faith. And in the history of the Church, there has never been a lack of Christians who would witness to such heroic love that they were even willing to shed their own blood. The time will come when love’s victory will be revealed, and Christians, who now see as if in a mirror, will see the Lord "face to face" as Paul says to the Corinthians (1 Cor 13:12).

Sunday Vigil