Memory of the Mother of the Lord

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Memory of Moses. Called by the Lord, he freed the people of Israel from the slavery of Egypt and led them to the "promised land."

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

Jude 1, 17-19

But remember, my dear friends, what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold.

'At the final point of time', they told you, 'there will be mockers who follow nothing but their own godless desires.'

It is they who cause division, who live according to nature and do not possess the Spirit.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

After having described and condemned the work of false teachers at great length, the apostle did not want the believers to be too surprised-a bit scandalized, yes, but not shocked-by what was happening around them. As the apostle appears to suggest, salvation does not lie in the purity of the community (or of the Church) or in its blemish-free members. Salvation is only in Jesus. Of course, we cannot remain indifferent to the evil that enters the Christian community. On the contrary, being fully aware of it, we should entrust ourselves to the Lord and give ourselves in every way possible to the struggle to overcome evil and cast it out of the lives of our brothers and sisters. That there will inevitably be problems in the community, however, is evidenced by what the apostles said to the first communities: "In the last time there will be scoffers, indulging their own ungodly lusts" (v. 18). If anything, this apostolic warning says that the final days have come-that is, the days have arrived in which the prince of evil unleashes his final attack. I believe that this is how this passage should be interpreted. We are in the final days in the sense that the prince of evil does not have that much time before him and therefore must launch his definitive attack. In the words of the apostle, the request to be conscious of the urgency of this struggle is particularly strong. We, too, are no longer able to hesitate, we no longer have time to postpone; every laziness, every resignation, and every indecision risks our becoming complicit. Truly, we are in the final days. Evil-and we can see it with our own eyes-assaults with extraordinary force both against the community of brothers and sisters and against the world. This is why we need to pray unceasingly to the Lord that he protect our community and the Church from evil. The apostle pauses to consider, in particular, the evil of division. Often in the New Testament the disciples are put on guard against this danger. The apostle Paul recalls in Corinthians, Galatians and Timothy to pay attention to this threat because it undermines the message of the Gospel. Today we cannot help but think of the divisions that separate Christians from each other and of the scandals that provoke such divisions. But, this is not all. Such divisions also increase peoples’ tendency to divide themselves and fight. We need to be aware of all of this and ask for assistance from the Lord to set out more bravely on the opposite path.