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The Everyday Prayer

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

Memorial of Saint John XXIII.

Reading of the Word of God

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The Spirit of the Lord is upon you.
The child you shall bear will be holy.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Galatians 5,1-6

Christ set us free, so that we should remain free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be fastened again to the yoke of slavery. I, Paul, give you my word that if you accept circumcision, Christ will be of no benefit to you at all. I give my assurance once again to every man who accepts circumcision that he is under obligation to keep the whole Law; once you seek to be reckoned as upright through the Law, then you have separated yourself from Christ, you have fallen away from grace. We are led by the Spirit to wait in the confident hope of saving justice through faith, since in Christ Jesus it is not being circumcised or being uncircumcised that can effect anything -- only faith working through love.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Look down, O Lord, on your servants.
Be it unto us according to your word.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

After showing that justice does not come from the works of the law but by faith, Paul wants to draw the moral consequences for a Christian life. The apostle affirms that Christ has freed us for freedom, that is so that we might live free. This is why Paul urges us to "stand firm", that is, to remain free and not to fall under the "yoke of slavery." With authoritative language Paul warns the Galatians not to be circumcised, because in so doing they would nullify the Gospel of freedom. Christians who are circumcised put themselves on the path of justification through the law. They not only exclude themselves from the help of Christ and fall back under the curse of the law, but, they break all ties and are cut off from Christ, "in which" they were united by baptism (3:27ff). The term used by Paul to express the ‘cut off’ from Christ, also contains the concept of going to ruin, that is of annihilating oneself. Those seeking justice through the law seal their own ruin, while those who follow the Gospel live of the Spirit. Therefore it is not ‘circumcision’ or ‘not circumcision’ that saves; that is, we are saved not by works but by the Spirit working in us. This is why Paul affirms that "faith works through love." Faith and love are inextricably linked: the second makes the first operative and the first makes the heart welcome the second. Paul cannot understand why the Galatians who first ran so well had their path interrupted. He reminds them that a few words contrary to the Gospel are enough to threaten negatively one’s entire life. Faced with this possibility, Paul trusts in the Lord: he is confident that the Galatians will repent, and he hopes that his letter will convince them. Very severe is the judgment on those who endanger the spiritual life of the community: they will incur God’s punishment.

Memory of the Mother of the Lord

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