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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

Whoever lives and believes in me
will never die.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

James 2, 8-13

Well, the right thing to do is to keep the supreme Law of scripture: you will love your neighbour as yourself;

but as soon as you make class distinctions, you are committing sin and under condemnation for breaking the Law.

You see, anyone who keeps the whole of the Law but trips up on a single point, is still guilty of breaking it all.

He who said, 'You must not commit adultery' said also, 'You must not kill.' Now if you commit murder, you need not commit adultery as well to become a breaker of the Law.

Talk and behave like people who are going to be judged by the law of freedom.

Whoever acts without mercy will be judged without mercy but mercy can afford to laugh at judgement.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

If you believe, you will see the glory of God,
thus says the Lord.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

James cites the passage from Leviticus that commands the love of one’s neighbour so as to invite the disciples to put into practice this commandment of love, upon which Jesus has the entire law and all the prophets depend. He calls this law "royal" to underline the primacy that it has among all the other commandments. As the First Letter from Peter recalls (2:9), a "royal priesthood" rightfully requires a "royal law", the law of love. The apostle affirms that only by fulfilling this law can the believer perform God’s will and therefore deserves to receive what God promised. A discriminatory attitude, therefore, kills Christian love. God does not show favouritism (Acts 10:34), but pours out his mercy on everyone. Christian love, then, takes its initiative from God’s way of acting. It is one law of love. This is why it is impossible to believe that we can trespass one part of the law and believing to be all right with the rest. All commandments regarding our love for our neighbour, those that compose the second tablet of the law, derive from the first, the law concerning our relationship with God. Only by accepting God’s love are we able to love our neighbour. Unfortunately, the lack of love is the reason for all the evils in the world. James’ letter reminds us that the world will be healed when we overcome arrogance, egotism and enmity. And it is gospel love that sets us free from every form of slavery because it is stronger than evil. True liberty, therefore, lies not in doing what we please, but in loving and serving others. James connects freedom and mercy: true freedom, as well as true justice, becomes true in mercy, in putting the interest for others at the first place and having a heart that is able to look at others without excluding or judging. Whoever lives this freedom from now on will see mercy reign over the earth.

Sunday Vigil

Calendar of the week
Sunday, 15 October
Liturgy of the Sunday
Monday, 16 October
Prayer for peace
Tuesday, 17 October
Memory of the Mother of the Lord
Wednesday, 18 October
Memory of the Apostles
Thursday, 19 October
Memory of the Church
Friday, 20 October
Memory of Jesus crucified
Saturday, 21 October
Sunday Vigil
Sunday, 22 October
Liturgy of the Sunday