Memory of the Poor

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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

2 Corinthians 1, 1-7

Paul, by the will of God an apostle of Christ Jesus, and Timothy, our brother, to the church of God in Corinth and to all God's holy people in the whole of Achaia.

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the merciful Father and the God who gives every possible encouragement;

he supports us in every hardship, so that we are able to come to the support of others, in every hardship of theirs because of the encouragement that we ourselves receive from God.

For just as the sufferings of Christ overflow into our lives; so too does the encouragement we receive through Christ.

So if we have hardships to undergo, this will contribute to your encouragement and your salvation; if we receive encouragement, this is to gain for you the encouragement which enables you to bear with perseverance the same sufferings as we do.

So our hope for you is secure in the knowledge that you share the encouragement we receive, no less than the sufferings we bear.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Paul writes again to the “Church of God which is at Corinth” and to all “saints,” the Christians who live in Achaia, that is, in the present central part of Greece. The Apostle does not fear to call “holy” the Christians and the whole Church. He knows that each one is a sinner, but the holiness of the Church comes from above, from God. It is the Lord who calls and gathers sinners to save [to subtract] them from sin and from death. And that is why his first words are a hymn of thanksgiving and of praise for what God has done both in the life of the Church and in his own life. It is the God of consolation to whom Paul gives thanks. He thanks him also, because the consolation, with which he is comforted, can be poured out also into the community of Corinth. Paul does not hide the difficulties he is undergoing on account of the Gospel. He even speaks of a mortal danger. It is not understood to what this refers, but he certainly thought he had reached his end. However, the apostle confesses his firm faith in the Lord to whom he feels assimilated in tribulation, and he blesses God the Father who does not fail to comfort and to console him in times of grief. The apostle confides to the Corinthians that in his most hard tribulations he has learned not to place trust in his own self but in the strength of a God who raises the dead. The steadfastness of faith does not rest, in fact, in our strength or in our capacities, but only in the certainty of the love of God for us and that his liberating work will never cease. Paul, however, calls for the participation of the Corinthians in his sufferings as well as in his consolation. It is the meaning of Christian fraternity that impels us to bear the burdens of one another, as likewise to rejoice in the joys of others. It seeks the help of prayer: “on him we have set our hope that he will rescue us again, as you also join in helping us by your prayers, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted to us through the prayers of many” (v. 10-11). Mutual prayer, which becomes ever more thanksgiving to the Lord, is among the most beautiful and most strong manifestations of love.