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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

Nahum 2,1-3; 3,1-3.6-7

To Judah See on the mountains the feet of the herald! 'Peace!' he proclaims. Judah, celebrate your feasts, carry out your vows, for Belial will never pass through you again; he has been utterly destroyed. The destroyer has advanced on you, guarding the siege-works, watching the road, bracing himself, mustering great strength! (For Yahweh has restored the vine of Jacob, yes, the vine of Israel, although the plunderers had plundered them, although they had snapped off their vine-shoots!) Disaster to the city of blood, packed throughout with lies, stuffed with booty, where plundering has no end! The crack of the whip! The rumble of wheels! Galloping horse, jolting chariot, charging cavalry, flashing swords, gleaming spears, a mass of wounded, hosts of dead, countless corpses; they stumble over corpses- I shall pelt you with filth, I shall shame you and put you in the pillory. Then all who look at you will shrink from you and say, 'Nineveh has been ruined!' Who will mourn for her? Where would I find people to comfort you?


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The Book of Nahum is a very short prophetic text written around the mid-seventh century before Christ. It includes prophesies against the city of Nineveh, the proud capital of Assyria, upset and occupied by the emerging power of Babylon. The prophet reads into this event the righteous judgment of God on one of the fiercest enemies who oppressed Israel. The defeat of Judah’s historic enemy is an occasion of joy for the kingdom: "Celebrate your festivals, O Judah, fulfil your vows, for never again shall the wicked invade you; they are utterly cut off." And here the prophet condemns Nineveh, "Ah! City of bloodshed, utterly deceitful, full of booty—no end to the plunder!" The prophet condemns the system of corruption established in the city that leads not only to the destruction of coexistence but also impedes rebuilding a social life. Corruption in fact is not only a criminal act, but also the consolidation of a system of violence and oppression. We could say that corruption is like an army that destroys a city with sword and fire: "The crack of whip and rumble of wheel, galloping horse and bounding chariot! Horsemen charging, flashing sword and glittering spear, piles of dead, heaps of corpses, dead bodies without end—they stumble over the bodies!" But after destroying the adversary, the Lord reconstructs the future of his people: "For the Lord is restoring the majesty of Jacob, as well as the majesty of Israel, though ravagers have ravaged them and ruined their branches." The prophet, who wants to reaffirm the unwavering loyalty of God to help and save his people, speaks with the imagery of the restoration of the vineyard. He announces: "Look! On the mountains the feet of one who brings good tidings, who proclaims peace!" The Lord, the prophet announces, returns to free his people from the oppression of the enemy, and gives them peace.

Memory of Jesus crucified

Calendar of the week
Sunday, 22 October
Liturgy of the Sunday
Monday, 23 October
Memory of the Poor
Tuesday, 24 October
Memory of the Mother of the Lord
Wednesday, 25 October
Memory of the Saints and the Prophets
Thursday, 26 October
Memory of the Church
Friday, 27 October
Memory of Jesus crucified
Saturday, 28 October
Memory of the Apostles
Sunday, 29 October
Liturgy of the Sunday