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The Everyday Prayer

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

Prayer for the unity of the Churches. Particular memory of the Churches and ecclesial communities (Lutheran, Reformed, Methodist, Baptist, Pentecostal).

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

Romans 8, 18-30

In my estimation, all that we suffer in the present time is nothing in comparison with the glory which is destined to be disclosed for us,

for the whole creation is waiting with eagerness for the children of God to be revealed.

It was not for its own purposes that creation had frustration imposed on it, but for the purposes of him who imposed it-

with the intention that the whole creation itself might be freed from its slavery to corruption and brought into the same glorious freedom as the children of God.

We are well aware that the whole creation, until this time, has been groaning in labour pains.

And not only that: we too, who have the first-fruits of the Spirit, even we are groaning inside ourselves, waiting with eagerness for our bodies to be set free.

In hope, we already have salvation; in hope, not visibly present, or we should not be hoping -- nobody goes on hoping for something which is already visible.

But having this hope for what we cannot yet see, we are able to wait for it with persevering confidence.

And as well as this, the Spirit too comes to help us in our weakness, for, when we do not know how to pray properly, then the Spirit personally makes our petitions for us in groans that cannot be put into words;

and he who can see into all hearts knows what the Spirit means because the prayers that the Spirit makes for God's holy people are always in accordance with the mind of God.

We are well aware that God works with those who love him, those who have been called in accordance with his purpose, and turns everything to their good.

He decided beforehand who were the ones destined to be moulded to the pattern of his Son, so that he should be the eldest of many brothers;

it was those so destined that he called; those that he called, he justified, and those that he has justified he has brought into glory.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Taking inspiration from the creation story, the apostle Paul reminds his readers that the entire universe is subject to “futility,” that is, to the foolishness of sin: “For the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.” This means that a longing for deliverance and redemption is written in the depths of the life of every man and women, just as it is written in the heart of creation itself. The apostle seems to be creating a close relationship between humanity - which awaits the full manifestation of the son of God - and creation. Creation lives with sense of expectation. Paul compares creation’s expectation to a pregnant woman: “We know that the whole creation has been groaning in labour pains until now.” It is a time of long waiting that began at the very moment of the Fall. Together with creation, believers also “groan” inside. In fact, they possess the “first fruits” of the Spirit and are working towards the resurrection of creation. In light of this passage written by the apostle, what comes to mind is the savage destruction of the environment, our climate, and the earth, which in these days seems to be accelerating. We urgently must recognize the longing for redemption felt even by creation, in its own way. From this perspective we could say that we are all waiting for “the new heavens and the new earth” of which the book of Revelation speaks. But the rebirth of creation passes through the rebirth of humanity. Indeed, only from new men and new women can a new world be born. With his death and resurrection, Jesus is the first born of the new creation. To us, his disciples, he gives his Spirit, which “helps our weakness.” It is the Spirit that suggests to us to pray for the world to be transformed according to God’s own design. Prayer becomes the first and most important way for the believer’s heart and the world itself to be transformed. It is with prayer that we hasten the coming of the Kingdom and the establishment of a new earth and new heavens -- the heavens and the earth of love and peace. We are called to conform ourselves to the image of Jesus, the Son, and this means his resurrection is not an event that only concerns him, but a total transformation of humanity and of the world, both of which follow the one who was raised first. The Community does not walk along the paths of history forgetful of its call to be a sanctified disciple of the Spirit; rather it is aware of the power of the Spirit that sustains its charism in the Church and the world.

Memory of the Mother of the Lord