Word of the day
Reading of the day
A Reading from the Book of Deuteronomy
"Lord, great and awesome God,
you who keep your merciful covenant toward those who love you
and observe your commandments!
We have sinned, been wicked and done evil;
we have rebelled and departed from your commandments and your laws.
We have not obeyed your servants the prophets,
who spoke in your name to our kings, our princes,
our fathers, and all the people of the land.
Justice, O Lord, is on your side;
we are shamefaced even to this day:
we, the men of Judah, the residents of Jerusalem,
and all Israel, near and far,
in all the countries to which you have scattered them
because of their treachery toward you.
O Lord, we are shamefaced, like our kings, our princes, and our fathers,
for having sinned against you.
But yours, O Lord, our God, are compassion and forgiveness!
Yet we rebelled against you
and paid no heed to your command, O Lord, our God,
to live by the law you gave us through your servants the prophets."
Gospel of the day
From the Gospel according to Luke
Jesus said to his disciples:
"Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.
"Stop judging and you will not be judged.
Stop condemning and you will not be condemned.
Forgive and you will be forgiven.
Give and gifts will be given to you;
a good measure, packed together, shaken down, and overflowing,
will be poured into your lap.
For the measure with which you measure
will in return be measured out to you."
Words of the Holy Father
I ask myself: are Jesus’ words realistic? Is it really possible to love like God loves and to be merciful like He is? We ask ourselves: What does it mean for disciples to be merciful? Jesus explains this with two verbs: “forgive” (Lk 6:37) and “give” (v. 38). Forgiveness, in fact, is the pillar that holds up the life of the Christian community, because it shows the the gratuitousness with which God has loved us first. The Christian must forgive! Why? Because he has been forgiven. Forgiveness is the first pillar; giving is the second pillar. “Give, and it will be given to you.... For the measure you give will be the measure you get back”. Merciful love is therefore the only way forward. We all have a great need to be a bit more merciful, to not speak ill of others, to not judge, to not “sting” others with criticism, with envy and jealousy. We must forgive, be merciful, and live our lives with love. (General Audience, 21 September 2016)