Memory of the Saints and the Prophets

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Reading of the Word of God

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

You are a chosen race,
a royal priesthood, a holy nation,
a people acquired by God
to proclaim his marvellous works.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

1 Thessalonians 2, 9-13

You remember, brothers, with what unsparing energy we used to work, slaving night and day so as not to be a burden on any one of you while we were proclaiming the gospel of God to you.

You are witnesses, and so is God, that our treatment of you, since you believed, has been impeccably fair and upright.

As you know, we treated every one of you as a father treats his children,

urging you, encouraging you and appealing to you to live a life worthy of God, who calls you into his kingdom and his glory.

Another reason why we continually thank God for you is that as soon as you heard the word that we brought you as God's message, you welcomed it for what it really is, not the word of any human being, but God's word, a power that is working among you believers.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

You will be holy,
because I am holy, thus says the Lord.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The apostle carries on his defence in this passage. If in the previous text he explained what he had failed to do (1Th 2:1-8), now the apostle wants to highlight the good that he had done. He had decided to act in an irreproachable way, consistent with the words he preached: “You are witnesses…[of] how pure, upright, and blameless our conduct was towards you believers.” The apostle is well aware of the fact that the Gospel is God’s, not his own nor any other person’s, but he knows that the more his life corresponds to his words the more effective his preaching will be. The Gospel is not a doctrine to be learned and communicated; indeed, it is a strong and effective word that can change the hearts and the lives of those who preach it and therefore also of those who listen to it. The apostle did come before them as the transmitter of new knowledge or as a teacher of new doctrines. He presented himself as a father who tries with all of his effort to generate new children in the faith. He reminds the Thessalonians: “As you know, we dealt with each one of you like a father with his children, urging and encouraging you and pleading that you should lead a life worthy of God, who calls you into his own kingdom and glory.” The apostle knows that he will touch the Thessalonians’ hearts with these words and help them continue to listen to the Gospel and live together as brothers and sisters. He gives thanks to God for this: “That when you received the word of God that you heard from us, you accepted it not as a human word but as what it really is, God’s word.” We may say this is the joy of the shepherd who sees his preaching of the Gospel fulfilled. The apostle knows well that this is the heart of the Christian experience, faith that the Word of God “is now at work in you who believe” (v. 13). ?