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The Everyday Prayer

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

Memorial of Floribert Bwana Chui, a young Congolese man from the Community of Sant’Egidio, who was killed by unknown people in Goma for he opposed corruption

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

Matthew 9, 32-37

They had only just left when suddenly a man was brought to him, a dumb demoniac.

And when the devil was driven out, the dumb man spoke and the people were amazed and said, 'Nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel.'

But the Pharisees said, 'It is through the prince of devils that he drives out devils.'

Jesus made a tour through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and curing all kinds of disease and all kinds of illness.

And when he saw the crowds he felt sorry for them because they were harassed and dejected, like sheep without a shepherd.

Then he said to his disciples, 'The harvest is rich but the labourers are few, so ask the Lord of the harvest to send out labourers to his harvest.'


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Accounts of miracles often appear in the Gospels. To understand miracles, it is important to understand that they reveal more than only divine strength. They are the signs that life can change, that it is possible to be healed and to have a different heart. This is why in the Gospel it is said that Jesus preached and healed. The same instructions given to the disciples then persist even today. The Church has been sent by Jesus to preach the Gospel and to cure men and women from every sickness. We need to come back to question ourselves about the task that the Lord entrusted also us, namely the “power” (an efficacious strength) of “touching the heart” through the preaching the Gospel and performing miracles of healing. We all know too well how numerous wicked and evil spirits subjugate the hearts and minds of many. The Gospel presents a “mute demoniac”, a sick man, unable to speak. Jesus restores his speech. Jesus is really the merciful; he alone is moved by those who are weak in this world; he alone puts the problems of others before his own. Today our cities are filled with men and women who are mute because they have no one to whom they can speak, ask their questions, share their sorrows, or learn their rights. Just think of the many elderly who frequently live alone as the years go by. One can be mute and deaf because no one questions, or no one can restore speech as Jesus did with the demoniac. Yes, we do need to listen to the Gospel in order to be able to speak again. So often we are practically mute because we are filled with empty words. Whoever has his/her heart touched by the Gospel starts again to speak, pray, exhort, pardon and also correct. And together with the crowds that surrounded Jesus, we too can express amazement: “Never has anybody like this has been seen in Israel.” Surely there are many opponents, today’s Pharisees, who try to discredit the Gospel, and the works of mercy performed by believers. But Jesus goes on with his mission and invites us to walk with him along the streets and squares of our cities. With merciful hearts like his, we can carry out “miracles” of mercy. Jesus’ pity opens our eyes and allows us to see, first and foremost, the poor and the weak and to bend on them. Unfortunately few, very few people with compassion approach the crowds of this world, who are “harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.” Jesus continues, “The harvest is plentiful but the labourers are few.” There is need to pray to the Father so that he can send workers of mercy. And we will discover that the Lord invites us as well to become workers for all those who fall prey to violence, solitude, sadness, war, poverty.

Memory of the Mother of the Lord