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The Everyday Prayer

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

Memory of St. Cyril, bishop of Jerusalem. Prayer for Jerusalem and for peace in the Holy Land.

Reading of the Word of God

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

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

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

1 Corinthians 15, 1-34

I want to make quite clear to you, brothers, what the message of the gospel that I preached to you is; you accepted it and took your stand on it,

and you are saved by it, if you keep to the message I preached to you; otherwise your coming to believe was in vain.

The tradition I handed on to you in the first place, a tradition which I had myself received, was that Christ died for our sins, in accordance with the scriptures,

and that he was buried; and that on the third day, he was raised to life, in accordance with the scriptures;

and that he appeared to Cephas; and later to the Twelve;

and next he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still with us, though some have fallen asleep;

then he appeared to James, and then to all the apostles.

Last of all he appeared to me too, as though I was a child born abnormally.

For I am the least of the apostles and am not really fit to be called an apostle, because I had been persecuting the Church of God;

but what I am now, I am through the grace of God, and the grace which was given to me has not been wasted. Indeed, I have worked harder than all the others -- not I, but the grace of God which is with me.

Anyway, whether it was they or I, this is what we preach and what you believed.

Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you be saying that there is no resurrection of the dead?

If there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ cannot have been raised either,

and if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is without substance, and so is your faith.

What is more, we have proved to be false witnesses to God, for testifying against God that he raised Christ to life when he did not raise him -- if it is true that the dead are not raised.

For, if the dead are not raised, neither is Christ;

and if Christ has not been raised, your faith is pointless and you have not, after all, been released from your sins.

In addition, those who have fallen asleep in Christ are utterly lost.

If our hope in Christ has been for this life only, we are of all people the most pitiable.

In fact, however, Christ has been raised from the dead, as the first-fruits of all who have fallen asleep.

As it was by one man that death came, so through one man has come the resurrection of the dead.

Just as all die in Adam, so in Christ all will be brought to life;

but all of them in their proper order: Christ the first-fruits, and next, at his coming, those who belong to him.

After that will come the end, when he will hand over the kingdom to God the Father, having abolished every principality, every ruling force and power.

For he is to be king until he has made his enemies his footstool,

and the last of the enemies to be done away with is death, for he has put all things under his feet.

But when it is said everything is subjected, this obviously cannot include the One who subjected everything to him.

When everything has been subjected to him, then the Son himself will be subjected to the One who has subjected everything to him, so that God may be all in all.

Otherwise, what are people up to who have themselves baptised on behalf of the dead? If the dead are not raised at all, what is the point of being baptised on their behalf?

And what about us? Why should we endanger ourselves every hour of our lives?

I swear by the pride that I take in you, in Christ Jesus our Lord, that I face death every day.

If I fought wild animals at Ephesus in a purely human perspective, what had I to gain by it?

If the dead are not going to be raised, then Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we shall be dead.

So do not let anyone lead you astray, 'Bad company corrupts good ways.' Wake up from your stupor as you should and leave sin alone; some of you have no understanding of God; I tell you this to instil some shame in you.


Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

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

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

So far, the apostle has tried to bring order to the community of Corinth: he has answered several moral questions and set down some rules about how to behave, including in the liturgical assemblies. Now he takes on the central mystery of the faith, which is also the heart of the liturgical celebration to which the apostle pays particular attention in this letter: the mystery of Jesus’ resurrection. It is the heart of the Gospel that Paul proclaimed: “Now I should remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news that I proclaimed to you, which you in turn received, in which also you stand” (v. 1). But, the apostle warns, this only happens “if you hold firmly to the message that I proclaimed to you” (v. 2). Christian faith, even in its content, is a gift that is received. Its centre is the resurrection of Jesus from the dead with his body. The apostle lashes out violently against those who maintain that there is no resurrection of the dead (v. 13), because this would negate the very resurrection of Jesus, and consequently, both the Gospel and the faith would be empty. Indeed, salvation is precisely this: Jesus has risen from the dead and has become the “the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep” - that is, the first of the children of God who has awakened back to life and reached full salvation. Jesus gave the disciples a foretaste of this when he stayed with them for forty days after Easter. They could see with their own eyes that Jesus, who had been crucified, had risen and had defeated death. From that Easter morning, the disciples, even though they were still incredulous, could see that death no longer had absolute power. Jesus had defeated death. And if the “head” of the body has risen, so, too, the other members - the disciples - will rise from the dead. The disciples of Jesus of all times, including our own, are walking towards the fulfilment of the resurrection at the end of time, when God will be all in all. This is the mystery that we celebrate every Sunday in the Eucharist. After the consecration, the Church has us say, “We proclaim your death, O Lord, and profess your Resurrection until you come again.” We are already living now what we will live fully at the end of time.

Prayer for peace

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