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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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

This is the Gospel of the poor,
liberation for the imprisoned,
sight for the blind,
freedom for the oppressed.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Luke 6, 39-42

He also told them a parable, 'Can one blind person guide another? Surely both will fall into a pit?

Disciple is not superior to teacher; but fully trained disciple will be like teacher.

Why do you observe the splinter in your brother's eye and never notice the great log in your own?

How can you say to your brother, "Brother, let me take out that splinter in your eye," when you cannot see the great log in your own? Hypocrite! Take the log out of your own eye first, and then you will see clearly enough to take out the splinter in your brother's eye.

 

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The Son of Man came to serve,
whoever wants to be great
should become servant of all.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

We continue our reading of Jesus’ sermon to the disciples, which began with the beatitudes. The passages that we read today and the ones we will read tomorrow form a unified series of wise and spiritual maxims that Jesus delivers to his disciples of both the past and the present. Jesus expresses his maxims in the form of “proverbs” so that everyone may understand them and be inspired to act on them concretely. The image of the blind man who cannot guide another blind man calls everyone, especially those who have the responsibility of leading, to know how to keep their eyes open to the Gospel, to be attentive to their interior life, to see what is good and beautiful around them, otherwise they will be blind and unable to help anyone. Jesus is clearly levelling this charge against the Pharisees because they are blind leaders, unable to lead. But, the lesson is for everyone, even for the disciples. Those who are blind - that is, those who let themselves be led only by their pettiness or pride, those who are focused only on themselves - fall into the very habit against which the Gospel warns. Jesus then reminds us that no disciple should think that he is superior to the teacher. Though he may progress in wisdom, the disciple must not fall into the temptation of thinking that he no longer needs to listen to the Gospel. If anything, the disciple must become evangelical, that is, have the same attitude as Jesus, so that then he “will be like his teacher.” It is not about imitating an external model as much as it is about living together with Jesus, sharing in his mission, working for his very same dream. It is being in this profound union with Jesus that led the apostle Paul to say: “No longer I, but Christ lives in me” (Gal 2:20). Holding to the opposite attitude brings us to point out the speck in other people’s eyes while not noticing the log in our own. This is the ancient vice, which is with us always: being lenient with ourselves and harsh with others. We have to keep this vice at bay. We all know the bitterness and distortions that a self-centred attitude causes in our relationships with one another. For this reason, the apostle Paul exhorts us, as he did then the Christians of Philippi: “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves” (Phil 2:3). It is not easy to consider others as better than ourselves. This is why the Gospel insists on this teaching, inviting us to take up a new attitude towards others, loving and not judging them. Love opens the eyes of the heart so that we may see, be moved, and meet others with mercy and humility. But it is not easy to have this attitude because to have it, we must do true, hard work in our interior lives, practice an asceticism that stops and modifies our instincts, persevere in listening to the Word of God, and keep humble and strong ties with our community of brothers and sisters. It may be hard, but it is the only way to build up a community of disciples as the Lord has willed it from the beginning.


09/12/2014
Memory of Jesus crucified


Calendar of the week
DEC
4
Sunday, 4 December
Liturgy of the Sunday
DEC
5
Monday, 5 December
Prayer for the Sick
DEC
6
Tuesday, 6 December
Memory of the Mother of the Lord
DEC
7
Wednesday, 7 December
Memory of the Saints and the Prophets
DEC
8
Thursday, 8 December
Feast of the Immaculate Conception
DEC
9
Friday, 9 December
Memory of Jesus crucified
DEC
10
Saturday, 10 December
Sunday Vigil
DEC
11
Sunday, 11 December
Liturgy of the Sunday

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