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The Everyday Prayer

printable version

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

Prayer for the unity of the Churches. Particular memory of the Christian communities in Africa.

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

Romans 8, 31-39

After saying this, what can we add? If God is for us, who can be against us?

Since he did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for the sake of all of us, then can we not expect that with him he will freely give us all his gifts?

Who can bring any accusation against those that God has chosen? When God grants saving justice

who can condemn? Are we not sure that it is Christ Jesus, who died -- yes and more, who was raised from the dead and is at God's right hand -- and who is adding his plea for us?

Can anything cut us off from the love of Christ -- can hardships or distress, or persecution, or lack of food and clothing, or threats or violence;

as scripture says: For your sake we are being massacred all day long, treated as sheep to be slaughtered?

No; we come through all these things triumphantly victorious, by the power of him who loved us.

For I am certain of this: neither death nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nothing already in existence and nothing still to come, nor any power,

nor the heights nor the depths, nor any created thing whatever, will be able to come between us and the love of God, known to us in Christ Jesus our Lord.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The apostle concludes this part of the Letter, which is centred on the Spirit, with a hymn to God’s love. There is an initial question that demonstrates the power of faith: “If God is for us, who is against us?” Believers do not base their hope on themselves or their own strength, but on the steadfastness of God’s love. It is the Lord who defends, sustains, protects, and saves his children. He does everything to save them. Beginning with the burning bush in Sinai, God revealed himself as the one who would never abandon his people. By saying, “I am who I am,” he meant, “I am the one who is always with my people, who will company them in the desert, who will bring them into the promised land, and who sustains them every day.” The whole of Scripture describes the incredible descent of God’s love toward men and women. The culmination of this relationship comes with Jesus, the Emmanuel, the God with us. The Father’s love is so extraordinary that not only did he send his Son into the world; he even let him be “sacrificed” for the salvation of all. This is the love that gives substance to our faith. Using the image of a trial at which the believers are being prosecuted, the apostle can even say, “Who will bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? ... Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised [?]” The believer is pre-emptively absolved by God’s embrace. It is just a matter of welcoming it. Nothing, in fact, except a decision made by our free will, can separate us from this love. The apostle enumerates a series of different, opposing realities and situations: death or life, angels or rulers, present or future, heights and depths and whatever other power might assail the believer. And indeed we believers often experience difficulties and opposition, even to the point of death. But none of this “will be able to separate us from the love of God.” This passage from the letter to the Romans concludes the central body of the letter (chapters 5-8) and demonstrates the complete unity of the plan of salvation shared by the Father and the Son. This plan of salvation has a name: love. And it is this word that best explains the future of God and humanity, as it does their past - the witness of Jesus’ gift on the cross.

Memory of the Saints and the Prophets