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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

1 Timothy 6, 2c-12

Anyone who teaches anything different and does not keep to the sound teaching which is that of our Lord Jesus Christ, the doctrine which is in accordance with true religion,

is proud and has no understanding, but rather a weakness for questioning everything and arguing about words. All that can come of this is jealousy, contention, abuse and evil mistrust;

and unending disputes by people who are depraved in mind and deprived of truth, and imagine that religion is a way of making a profit.

Religion, of course, does bring large profits, but only to those who are content with what they have.

We brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it;

but as long as we have food and clothing, we shall be content with that.

People who long to be rich are a prey to trial; they get trapped into all sorts of foolish and harmful ambitions which plunge people into ruin and destruction.

'The love of money is the root of all evils' and there are some who, pursuing it, have wandered away from the faith and so given their souls any number of fatal wounds.

But, as someone dedicated to God, avoid all that. You must aim to be upright and religious, filled with faith and love, perseverance and gentleness.

Fight the good fight of faith and win the eternal life to which you were called and for which you made your noble profession of faith before many witnesses.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The apostle warns Timothy for a third time against those who misinterpret the Gospel’s teaching (1:3-20; 4:1-11). They separate themselves from the community, as they do not follow the sound words of the Lord; the only words that can save them, freeing them from sin and death. Those who let their pride dominate are finally subdued: they see only themselves. They are conceited, understand nothing, and have a morbid disposition for arguments and verbal disputes. This brave attitude isn’t harmless; it’s dangerous to them and to the Christian community. Pride destroys fraternal love, which is the highest feature of the community. The bitter fruits are envy, rivalry, insults, evil suspicions, and mutual frictions. The apostle dwells strongly upon the abuse of religion as a means of gain. The disciple behaves in the opposite way: "Godliness is valuable in every way, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come" (4:8). When life is guided by devotion, it holds a promise of life for the present and for eternity. Devotion must be accompanied by meekness, contentment, freedom from the love of money, and a contentedness in the gifts of God. To highlight the correct approach towards earthly goods, the apostle recalls a frequent concept in Scripture: we brought nothing into the world, just as we shall not be able to take anything out of it. This saying comes from an ancient wisdom, which neither despises earthly goods, nor glorifies them or submits to them. Those who store possessions for themselves should remember what God says: "You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be" (Lk 12: 20). Paul knows well that greed is poisonous, so he firmly condemns those who want to be very rich. Such exasperate desire to store possessions is harmful both for them and for others: it plunges them into the destruction of their hearts and lives. Paul bravely insists, "The love of money is a root of all kinds of evil." Jesus himself clearly said, "You cannot serve God and wealth" (Mt 6:24). Greed is incompatible with Christian devotion and with truly human life.

Memory of Jesus crucified