Sunday Vigil

Ossza Meg

The prayer for Christian unity begins. Particular memory of the Catholic Church.


Reading of the Word of God

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Whoever lives and believes in me
will never die.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

1 Samuel 9,1-4.17-19.26; 10,1

Among the men of Benjamin was a man called Kish son of Abiel, son of Zeror, son of Becorath, son of Aphiah; a Benjaminite and a person of rank. He had a son called Saul, a handsome man in the prime of life. Of all the Israelites there was no one more handsome than he; he stood head and shoulders taller than anyone else. Now since the donkeys belonging to Kish, Saul's father, had strayed, Kish said to his son Saul, 'My son, take one of the servants with you and be off; go and look for the donkeys.' They went through the highlands of Ephraim, they went through the territory of Shalishah, and did not find them; they went through the territory of Shaalim but they were not there; they went through the territory of Benjamin and did not find them. When Samuel saw Saul, Yahweh told him, 'That is the man of whom I said to you, "He is to govern my people." ' Saul accosted Samuel in the gateway and said, 'Tell me, please, where the seer's house is.' Samuel replied to Saul, 'I am the seer. Go up ahead of me to the high place. You must eat with me today. Tomorrow, when I let you go, I shall tell you whatever is on your mind. At dawn, Samuel called to Saul on the roof, 'Get up, and I shall send you on your way.' Saul got up, and Samuel and he went outside together. Samuel took a phial of oil and poured it on Saul's head; he then kissed him and said, 'Has not Yahweh anointed you as leader of his people Israel? You are the man who is to govern Yahweh's people and save them from the power of the enemies surrounding them. The sign for you that Yahweh has anointed you as prince of his heritage is this:

 

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

If you believe, you will see the glory of God,
thus says the Lord.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

The Lord is moved by the sad condition of his people and intervenes moving the events that may seem secondary, as in this case, and with minor characters. In truth, this is precisely in minor things the Lord works to show that the work is completely his. The choice for Saul follows the same logic. Upon hearing the news from Samuel, Saul is surprised and objects: "I am only a Benjaminite, from the least of the tribes of Israel, and my family is the humblest of all the families of the tribe of Benjamin. Why then have you spoken to me in this way?" (V.21). This is God acting. God warned Samuel the day before. And in the meeting with Saul the investiture takes place. The ritual is not esoteric or mysterious. Rather, is in the human encounter, in people speaking directly with one another, God's plan is realized. Saul does not know Samuel, nor does he go to great lengths to find him. He ascertains, from some young women and then a stranger he meets on the road, that Samuel is not a mere "soothsayer," but a prophet, a man of God. Samuel did not know Saul either; but he relies on the Lord who will indicate the one he elected. Saul looks for his lost donkeys and goes to a prophet; he also wants to pay him for his help and instead is welcomed at a banquet and invited to spend the night in the country; he wants news about his donkeys and is assured that he will be told all that is on his mind; he does not have anything (the servant has the money) but is told that "what is most precious" in Israel belongs to him and his family. In his conversation with Samuel, Saul asks how is it that "what is most precious" in Israel belongs to him, a member of the smallest tribe and of the least important family of that tribe. The question does not get a response, but Samuel makes him sit at the first place in the banquet: "So Saul ate with Samuel that day." In that dinner around the table they establish bonds of love and friendship. Friendship in the Bible is part of the faith of believers or better, a way to live their faith with God and with one another.