Word of the day

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Reading of the day

A reading from the Letter of James
Jas 1:1-11

James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,
to the twelve tribes in the dispersion, greetings.

Consider it all joy, my brothers and sisters,
when you encounter various trials,
for you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.
And let perseverance be perfect,
so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
But if any of you lacks wisdom,
he should ask God who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly,
and he will be given it.
But he should ask in faith, not doubting,
for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea
that is driven and tossed about by the wind.
For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord,
since he is a man of two minds, unstable in all his ways.

The brother in lowly circumstances
should take pride in high standing,
and the rich one in his lowliness,
for he will pass away “like the flower of the field.”
For the sun comes up with its scorching heat and dries up the grass,
its flower droops, and the beauty of its appearance vanishes.
So will the rich person fade away in the midst of his pursuits.

Gospel of the day

From the Gospel according to Mark
Mk 8:11-13

The Pharisees came forward and began to argue with Jesus,
seeking from him a sign from heaven to test him.
He sighed from the depth of his spirit and said,
“Why does this generation seek a sign?
Amen, I say to you, no sign will be given to this generation.”
Then he left them, got into the boat again,
and went off to the other shore.

Words of the Holy Father

In sending out the 72 disciples, Jesus gives them precise instructions which express the characteristics of the mission. The first, as we have already seen, is: pray; the second: go; and then: carry no purse, no bag...; say, ‘Peace be to this house’ ... remain in the same house... do not go from house to house... heal the sick in it and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you’”. And if they do not receive you, go out into the streets and take your leave (cf. vv. 2-10). These imperatives show that the mission is based on prayer; that it is itinerant: it is not idle; it is itinerant; that it requires separation and poverty; that it brings peace and healing, signs of the closeness of the Kingdom of God; that it is not proselytism but proclamation and witness; and that it also requires frankness and the evangelical freedom to leave while highlighting the responsibility of having rejected the message of salvation, but without condemnation and cursing. (Santa Marta, 17 February 2014)