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The Everyday Prayer

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

Memorial of the death of Gandhi. With him we remember all those who, in the name of non-violence, are peacemakers

Reading of the Word of God

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

I am the good shepherd,
my sheep listen to my voice,
and they become
one flock and one fold.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Mark 4, 21-25

He also said to them, 'Is a lamp brought in to be put under a tub or under the bed? Surely to be put on the lamp-stand?

For there is nothing hidden, but it must be disclosed, nothing kept secret except to be brought to light.

Anyone who has ears for listening should listen!'

He also said to them, 'Take notice of what you are hearing. The standard you use will be used for you -- and you will receive more besides;

anyone who has, will be given more; anyone who has not, will be deprived even of what he has.'


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

I give you a new commandment,
that you love one another.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

After sharing with the apostles and some disciples that he had entrusted to them the mystery of the kingdom of God, Jesus adds that this mystery should not be kept hidden; they should not keep it for themselves, as if they were a group of elected people who should bask in this privilege. Of course, they had to penetrate and comprehend it with all the commitment of their intelligence. But the mystery was for all men and women. They were to manifest it to all, spread it widely to the ends of the earth. Moreover, it is what Jesus himself did first. Since he left Nazareth and began his public preaching, he does not cease walking the streets and squares of Galilee to communicate to all the nearness of the kingdom of God, that is the Father’s love for all and particularly for the poor. Truly the light that was coming into the world - as it is written in the prologue of John’s Gospel - is no longer “under a bushel basket,” but it is on the lamp stand. And the crowds became aware of it to the point that they all flocked to him to be enlightened, to receive a light that illuminates the darkness of an often sad and difficult life. The image of the light that exists to enlighten others, not itself, describes well the life of Jesus. He who is the true light that enlightens every man and woman did not come for himself; he did not incarnate to realize himself, nor to assert his own personal project. Jesus came on earth to enlighten the footsteps of human beings towards salvation; he came so that all, listening to his words, can walk the streets of life until reaching the sky. The disciples, whom he continues to call over the centuries, from generation to generation, are invited to do the same: that is not to hide the light of the Gospel they have received or to have narrow measures in its communication to the world. Jesus warns, “The measure you give will be the measure you get.” It is the invitation to have a broad and merciful heart, like that of the Father who is in heaven. And the generosity of God was extensive with us: he gave us his own Son so that we welcome him and make him known to others. With a similar generosity we will be judged. Jesus explains to his disciples, “For to those who have, more will be given; and from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away.” Love and generosity, according to the Gospel of Jesus, cannot stand restrictions and boundaries: the believer’s heart is universal and open to all.

Memory of the Church