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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

Acts 11,1-18

The apostles and the brothers in Judaea heard that gentiles too had accepted the word of God, and when Peter came up to Jerusalem the circumcised believers protested to him and said, 'So you have been visiting the uncircumcised and eating with them!' Peter in reply gave them the details point by point, 'One day, when I was in the town of Jaffa,' he began, 'I fell into a trance as I was praying and had a vision of something like a big sheet being let down from heaven by its four corners. This sheet came right down beside me. I looked carefully into it and saw four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, reptiles, and birds of heaven. Then I heard a voice that said to me, "Now, Peter, kill and eat!" But I answered, "Certainly not, Lord; nothing profane or unclean has ever crossed my lips." And a second time the voice spoke from heaven, "What God has made clean, you have no right to call profane." This was repeated three times, before the whole of it was drawn up to heaven again. 'Just at that moment, three men stopped outside the house where we were staying; they had been sent from Caesarea to fetch me, and the Spirit told me to have no hesitation about going back with them. The six brothers here came with me as well, and we entered the man's house. He told us he had seen an angel standing in his house who said, "Send to Jaffa and fetch Simon known as Peter; he has a message for you that will save you and your entire household." 'I had scarcely begun to speak when the Holy Spirit came down on them in the same way as it came on us at the beginning, and I remembered that the Lord had said, "John baptised with water, but you will be baptised with the Holy Spirit." I realised then that God was giving them the identical gift he gave to us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ; and who was I to stand in God's way?' This account satisfied them, and they gave glory to God, saying, 'God has clearly granted to the gentiles too the repentance that leads to life.'


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The community of Jerusalem did not understand what Peter had done with Cornelius and his family, and so they criticized him severely. These formerly Jewish Christians were still closed in their small horizons and unable to understand the greatness of the Lord’s love. Their minds and hearts were trapped in a kind of ethnic belonging bound to Jewish rites and customs. They needed to listen to the Gospel again for their minds and hearts to be opened. The same thing still happens today, although on a different level, when barriers of a ethnic, tribal, national, or even cultural nature are raised between Christians or between Christian communities. Jesus came to knock down everything that divides and separates. Peter spoke to the community in Jerusalem and explained that what had happened was directly inspired by God. Having listened to the apostle, the believers of Jerusalem, “were silenced. And they praised God, saying, ‘God has given even to the Gentiles the repentance that leads to life”. A barrier was torn down and the whole world was opening before the apostles.

Memory of the Poor

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