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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

Revelation 1,1-5; 2,1-5

A revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him so that he could tell his servants what is now to take place very soon; he sent his angel to make it known to his servant John, and John has borne witness to the Word of God and to the witness of Jesus Christ, everything that he saw. Blessed is anyone who reads the words of this prophecy, and blessed those who hear them, if they treasure the content, because the Time is near. John, to the seven churches of Asia: grace and peace to you from him who is, who was, and who is to come, from the seven spirits who are before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the First-born from the dead, the highest of earthly kings. He loves us and has washed away our sins with his blood, 'Write to the angel of the church in Ephesus and say, "Here is the message of the one who holds the seven stars in his right hand and who lives among the seven golden lamp-stands: I know your activities, your hard work and your perseverance. I know you cannot stand wicked people, and how you put to the test those who were self-styled apostles, and found them false. I know too that you have perseverance, and have suffered for my name without growing tired. Nevertheless, I have this complaint to make: you have less love now than formerly. Think where you were before you fell; repent, and behave as you did at first, or else, if you will not repent, I shall come to you and take your lamp-stand from its place.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

In these last two weeks of the liturgical year, the first reading of daily Mass presents some passages from Revelation (a word that means unveiling). We could say that all of Holy Scripture is a revelation, an unveiling of the mystery of God’s love for us. This last book of the New Testament reveals the mystery of Jesus, who came to save the world from sin and death through his death and resurrection. The book – as noted by its author, whom tradition identifies as John – is also a "prophecy" (v. 3), that is, an unveiling of the meaning of life, the thread of God’s love that runs through the tangle of human experience to its fulfilment in heaven. John ends the book with words similar to those he uses at the beginning: "The Lord, the God of the spirits of the prophets, has sent his angel to show his servants what must soon take place. See, I am coming soon! Blessed is the one who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book" (22:6-7). Through an angel, Jesus communicates to John what he has received from the Father. In reality, we always need an angel to help us hear and understand the mystery of God. The prophet Amos had already said: "Surely the Lord God does nothing, without revealing his secret to his servants the prophets" (3:7). The process of revelation never occurs hidden inside any one of us; it is never a sort of "self-revelation." We are all invited to go out of ourselves and to listen to an Other. The Lord always sends an angel who speaks to us and explains the Gospel. Those of us who then communicate it in turn become "servants" of that word; we are not sent to communicate ourselves, we are sent to communicate the Word of God, the will of God, the thought of God, and the imminent events that "must soon take place" (v. 1). This is why John can pronounce the first of the seven beatitudes that run through this book: "Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of the prophecy, and blessed are those who hear and who keep what is written in it." It is a personal ("blessed is the one who reads") and communal invitation ("those who hear") to listen to the One who speaks. We must each listen to the Word of God personally so that we can create those bonds that allow strangers to become a community of believers.

Memory of the Poor

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