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The Everyday Prayer

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

Memorial of the first martyrs of the Roman Church during persecution of Nero.

Reading of the Word of God

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

I am the good shepherd,
my sheep listen to my voice,
and they become
one flock and one fold.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Amos 7,10-17

Amaziah the priest of Bethel then sent word to Jeroboam king of Israel as follows, 'Amos is plotting against you in the heart of the House of Israel; the country cannot tolerate his speeches. For this is what Amos says, "Jeroboam is going to die by the sword, and Israel will go into captivity far from its native land." ' To Amos himself Amaziah said, 'Go away, seer, take yourself off to Judah, earn your living there, and there you can prophesy! But never again will you prophesy at Bethel, for this is a royal sanctuary, a national temple.' 'I am not a prophet,' Amos replied to Amaziah, 'nor do I belong to a prophetic brotherhood. I am merely a herdsman and dresser of sycamore-figs. But Yahweh took me as I followed the flock, and Yahweh said to me, "Go and prophesy to my people Israel." So now listen to what Yahweh says: "You say: Do not prophesy against Israel, do not foretell doom on the House of Isaac!" Very well, this is what Yahweh says, "Your wife will become a prostitute in the streets, your sons and daughters will fall by the sword, your land will be parcelled out by measuring line, and you yourself will die on polluted soil and Israel will go into captivity far from its own land!" '


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

I give you a new commandment,
that you love one another.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

This page reports the conversation between the priest Amaziah and the prophet. But they do not meet to discuss their own plans or their individual strategies. Both mention the word of another who is greater than them. Amaziah reports the king’s word and Hosea that of God. In truth two perspectives are facing us. One is purely human, and in this case also political, and the other is fully religious and a part of the story of salvation history guided by God himself. There is a social dimension that is the background to this page Amos who is of the "visions" of the prophet. The prophetic word is not meant for the personal fulfilment of the prophet but to realize God’s "vision", that is to implement His plan for the world. The prophetic word - as we have already seen - is by nature destined to change history, starting with our personal one. It calls into question the very lives of those who are called to serve it, even at the cost of incurring violent opposition. As happens in this case of Amos: Amaziah expels him from the temple that is no longer the sanctuary of God, as it has been turned into the sanctuary of the king. Pride and power lead to the exaltation of themselves to the point of trying to bend to one’s narcissism even the place of God. Whenever egocentrism, one’s own interests and desires, prevail, even the holiest things are profaned. It is what happened to Jeroboam, but also what happened in the Temple of Jerusalem when it became more like a marketplace than a house of prayer, which provoked Jesus’ violent reaction. The Word of God is not, however, harnessed by the shackles of self. Amos, who let himself be seized by the Lord, announces without fear the Word of God, with the accompanying denunciations of injustice and abuse of power. He does not belong to any caste, nor claim a special place that distinguishes him from others. On the contrary, he was called, possessed, by God while he was guarding his flock, while he was doing his ordinary work, to participate in God’s plan for the world. The prophet, who let himself be seized by this call, finds in it all his power. In Christian tradition, the prophetic dimension, and the announcement of the Gospel and denunciation of injustices, is a task that the Lord entrusts to the community as well as to every disciple: we are a priestly, royal and prophetic people.

Memory of the Church

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