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The Everyday Prayer

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

In the Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere the Community of Sant’Egidio prays for the sick.
Memorial of Saint Athanasius (295-373), Bishop of Alexandria in Egypt.

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

Acts 16,11-15

Sailing from Troas we made a straight run for Samothrace; the next day for Neapolis, and from there for Philippi, a Roman colony and the principal city of that district of Macedonia. After a few days in this city we went outside the gates beside a river as it was the Sabbath and this was a customary place for prayer. We sat down and preached to the women who had come to the meeting. One of these women was called Lydia, a woman from the town of Thyatira who was in the purple-dye trade, and who revered God. She listened to us, and the Lord opened her heart to accept what Paul was saying. After she and her household had been baptised she kept urging us, 'If you judge me a true believer in the Lord,' she said, 'come and stay with us.' And she would take no refusal.


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 Paul, called by the "Spirit of Jesus," arrived in Europe, for the first time, around the year 50. We could say that Europe was waiting for the proclamation of the Gospel, as shown by a cry for help from the Macedonians... As reported in the Acts of the Apostles on the day of Pentecost, followers of Jesus, probably of Jewish origin, were already in Rome. Paul’s journey has symbolic value because of its missionary dimension. Paul’s first stop, in the itinerary of the proclamation of the Word of God towards Rome, is in Philippi. This city, named after Alexander the Great’s father, was a Roman colony. Perhaps that is why Paul thought of stopping there first. At this point, the text proceeds with the pronoun "we," suggesting that Luke had joined the mission of Paul and Silas. A group of women, led by a God-fearing cloth dealer named Lydia, welcome Paul to Philippi. After listening to Paul, she converts and asks to be baptized. She is just one person, but Luke stops to emphasize this episode. Indeed, the preaching of the Gospel is not measured by the number of adherents; it does not aim to increase numbers. The Gospel is aimed at changing every single person’s heart. Christian fraternity comes from individual change. Apostolic preaching works by changing people’s hearts and linking them to each other with a fraternal bond. In this sense, Lydia’s insistence in hosting Paul and his companions is an indispensable fruit of conversion to the Gospel. We do not convert to the Gospel for ourselves or for our own self-realization. Conversion means joining with our brothers and sisters to form the one people of God, to which the Lord entrusts the task of preaching, through word and example, the breadth of his love. The fraternity that is born from the preaching of the Gospel immediately turns outwards in mission, a fact with social consequences. This awareness of mission contrasts with the individualistic Christianity that often enters the mind-set of many believers. The Second Vatican Council reiterates that God chose to save men and women by gathering them together in a people so that they would be a sign of and a tool for the unity of the human family.

Prayer for the Sick

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