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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

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

The Spirit of the Lord is upon you.
The child you shall bear will be holy.

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

1 Corinthians 12, 1-11

About the gifts of the Spirit, brothers, I want you to be quite certain.

You remember that, when you were pagans, you were irresistibly drawn to inarticulate heathen gods.

Because of that, I want to make it quite clear to you that no one who says 'A curse on Jesus' can be speaking in the Spirit of God, and nobody is able to say, 'Jesus is Lord' except in the Holy Spirit.

There are many different gifts, but it is always the same Spirit;

there are many different ways of serving, but it is always the same Lord.

There are many different forms of activity, but in everybody it is the same God who is at work in them all.

The particular manifestation of the Spirit granted to each one is to be used for the general good.

To one is given from the Spirit the gift of utterance expressing wisdom; to another the gift of utterance expressing knowledge, in accordance with the same Spirit;

to another, faith, from the same Spirit; and to another, the gifts of healing, through this one Spirit;

to another, the working of miracles; to another, prophecy; to another, the power of distinguishing spirits; to one, the gift of different tongues and to another, the interpretation of tongues.

But at work in all these is one and the same Spirit, distributing them at will to each individual.


Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

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

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

In the next three chapters, Paul writes about the variety of the gifts of the Spirit given to the disciples, and he still refers to them in the context of the liturgical celebration. On the day of Pentecost, the Spirit, which in the Old Testament was reserved for individual prophets, was poured out over all the disciples. While he was preaching on the day of Pentecost, Peter repeated the prophecy of Joel: “In the last days it will be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams” (Acts 2:17). With Jesus, the last days have come, and the Spirit is given to the entire community. It works through the “variety” of gifts that the Lord gives the disciples. Everyone receives one in particular. This is a sign of the richness and, at the same time, the great liberty that exists in the Church. The charismatic dimension is not something improvised or secondary for the Christian community; it is one of its constitutive dimensions. We should never forget – and the apostle reminds us of this repeatedly – that it is the Spirit that gives the various charisms. It is not a question of personal qualities, but gifts that are received. And we should never forget that the variety of gifts - the multiplicity of charisms - is given by the one Lord “for the common good.” The gifts of the Spirit are not given for our personal good, or, as is sometimes said, for our personal fulfilment, for our personal satisfaction, or for our personal glory. The Lord gives charisms to the members of the community so that community itself may be built up richly and harmoniously. And the Church, which is “charismatic” in its very fibres - that is, full of gifts - has not received them for itself but for the good of its mission to save the world. This is why when Jesus was sending his disciples out, he told them “You received without payment; give without payment” (Matthew 10:8).

Memory of the Mother of the Lord