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

Psalm 85, 9-14

8 Let me hear what God the Lord will speak,
     for he will speak peace to his people,
     to his faithful, to those who turn to him in their hearts.

9 Surely his salvation is at hand for those who fear him,
     that his glory may dwell in our land.

10 Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet;
     righteousness and peace will kiss each other.

11 Faithfulness will spring up from the ground,
     and righteousness will look down from the sky.

12 The Lord will give what is good,
     and our land will yield its increase.

13 Righteousness will go before him,
     and will make a path for his steps.


Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

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

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

During this season of Advent, the liturgy once again has us sing this last part of Psalm 85, to remind us that “his salvation is at hand” (v. 9). It is good to be roused from the sleep to which we easily succumb because of our selfish habits. The season of Advent comes into our time to remind us that the Lord is “at hand.” We need to focus our hearts on the coming of the Lord. That is why we are asked to lift our gaze from ourselves, not to remain focused on ourselves, our problems, and our concerns. This is the time to wait for the Lord. We all need someone to save us from a world that continues to be wounded by wars and conflicts, by forms of injustice and violence, both small and great. Our prayer needs to rise to the Lord more strongly, asking him to come and change the face of the earth. The refrain for the psalm has us pray, “Come, Lord, king of justice and peace.” This generation of ours needs to listen to the Gospel again. It needs believers who, with greater daring and generosity, help the world become more peaceful and united. Believers are called to a new missionary season, a new planting. But this is only possible if we let ourselves be enveloped by the Lord and his dream. We must choose to do the same as the psalmist: “Let me hear what God the Lord will speak.” We need to listen to the Gospel again, to understand more deeply its urgent call for change and to communicate it with words and actions in our societies. With a splendid image, the psalmist shows us the fruit of this renewed witness to the Gospel: “Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet; righteousness and peace will kiss each other” (v. 11). This is the society for which God dreams and which he entrusts into our hands. Even more than we do, God knows that our hands are poor and weak, but he does not hesitate to make us his co-workers. He gives us his strength and accompanies us on our path. The psalmist assures us that this work will bear fruit “The Lord will give what is good, and our land will yield its increase” (v. 13). And he will never fail to accompany us in our work to change the world: “Righteousness will go before him, and will make a path for his steps” (v. 14).