Memory of Jesus crucified

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Prayer for the unity of the Churches. Particular memory of the Churches of the Anglican Communion.

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

Mark 3, 13-19

He now went up onto the mountain and summoned those he wanted. So they came to him

and he appointed twelve; they were to be his companions and to be sent out to proclaim the message,

with power to drive out devils.

And so he appointed the Twelve, Simon to whom he gave the name Peter,

James the son of Zebedee and John the brother of James, to whom he gave the name Boanerges or 'Sons of Thunder';

Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the Zealot

and Judas Iscariot, the man who was to betray him.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

With this passage, we hear the beginning of a new section of the Gospel of Mark. It opens, like in a general synthesis, with the image of the community of the disciples around Jesus. The Teacher, surrounded by the Twelve on the mountain, represents the universality of the Christian community. For indeed, this is what it is: men and women gathered around Jesus as their Saviour. It is the Lord Jesus and nothing else that keeps them together. The reason of the Christian community is only Jesus; it is certainly not nationality, common interests, cultural links, shared condition, or belongings that unite them. What unites them all is to be disciples of the one Teacher. However, the Christian community is not anonymous; it is not composed of people who do not have other links with each another and do not know each other. The Lord edifies his community, calling each by name, one by one. It is like this that the Christian community was born, and in the same way, it will continue to grow today and tomorrow. In the Christian community, each one has his or her name and story; to each one, as for the twelve, is entrusted the mission to proclaim the Gospel and heal every illness. And yet, there is a precondition to the mission: the apostle must, first of all, "be with Jesus." We could say that the apostle is primarily a disciple, that is, one who stays with Jesus, who listens to and follows him. The tight link with Jesus’ life and words is the foundation of the apostolicity of the disciples. If they are with Jesus, they will go with him among the crowds and will continue his work. Later, according to what the evangelist John reports, Jesus will tell them: "because apart from me you can do nothing" (Jn 15:5).