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

Romans 8, 12-17

So then, my brothers, we have no obligation to human nature to be dominated by it.

If you do live in that way, you are doomed to die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the habits originating in the body, you will have life.

All who are guided by the Spirit of God are sons of God;

for what you received was not the spirit of slavery to bring you back into fear; you received the Spirit of adoption, enabling us to cry out, 'Abba, Father!'

The Spirit himself joins with our spirit to bear witness that we are children of God.

And if we are children, then we are heirs, heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ, provided that we share his suffering, so as to share his glory.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The human condition is often caught between pride and fear: we have a strong desire to affirm ourselves, but we are equally afraid of not being able to dominate those around us. The life that results is not attractive either for us or for others. Pride and fear bind men and women; they lead us to create a society composed of people abandoned in loneliness, orphans without any point of reference and therefore more easily preyed upon by violence and exploitation. Every time we turn in on ourselves, we strengthen our fear of others and consequently our tendency to set ourselves in opposition to others in order to defend ourselves. The Lord has come to our aid, giving us his spirit of liberty and making us his children, so that we will not fall back into the slavery of fear. Indeed, none of Jesus’ disciples can say that he or she is an orphan or abandoned. On the contrary, the disciples are radically taken away from loneliness and welcomed into the family of God, into a home where they are recognized, loved, helped, accompanied, and corrected. Indeed, salvation means being taken out of the power of evil and loneliness and becoming a part of the people of the Lord. In one of the fundamental texts of Vatican II, the Constitution of the Church, we read that God did not want to save human beings one by one, but by establishing them as a people, a "family" where everyone can speak to the Father with complete trust, the trust of a child who can call the Lord, "dad," "abba." This is the essence of our salvation. Our status as children will never end; rather, it is the source of our joy. Those who refuse to be children condemn themselves to the slavery of evil. By remaining children, we also become heirs of the promises of God and his glory.