Word of the day

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Reading of the day

A reading from the First Book of Kings
1 Kgs 18:41-46

Elijah said to Ahab, “Go up, eat and drink,
for there is the sound of a heavy rain.”
So Ahab went up to eat and drink,
while Elijah climbed to the top of Carmel,
crouched down to the earth,
and put his head between his knees.
“Climb up and look out to sea,” he directed his servant,
who went up and looked, but reported, “There is nothing.”
Seven times he said, “Go, look again!”
And the seventh time the youth reported,
“There is a cloud as small as a man’s hand rising from the sea.”
Elijah said, “Go and say to Ahab,
‘Harness up and leave the mountain before the rain stops you.’”
In a trice the sky grew dark with clouds and wind,
and a heavy rain fell.
Ahab mounted his chariot and made for Jezreel.
But the hand of the LORD was on Elijah,
who girded up his clothing and ran before Ahab
as far as the approaches to Jezreel.

Gospel of the day

From the Gospel according to Matthew
Mt 5:20-26

Jesus said to his disciples:
“I tell you, unless your righteousness surpasses that
of the scribes and Pharisees,
you will not enter into the Kingdom of heaven.

“You have heard that it was said to your ancestors,
You shall not kill; and whoever kills will be liable to judgment.
But I say to you, whoever is angry with his brother
will be liable to judgment,
and whoever says to his brother, Raqa,
will be answerable to the Sanhedrin,
and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ will be liable to fiery Gehenna.
Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar,
and there recall that your brother
has anything against you,
leave your gift there at the altar,
go first and be reconciled with your brother,
and then come and offer your gift.
Settle with your opponent quickly while on the way to court with him.
Otherwise your opponent will hand you over to the judge,
and the judge will hand you over to the guard,
and you will be thrown into prison.
Amen, I say to you,
you will not be released until you have paid the last penny.”

Words of the Holy Father

The Scriptures speak of the suffering of the poor and oppressed which God knows and shares. But the hunger and thirst for righteousness’ sake that the Lord refers to is even more profound than the legitimate need for human justice that each man and woman carries in his/her heart. This is the righteousness that comes from God (cf. 1 Cor 1:30). Saint Augustine says: “Thou madest us for Thyself, Lord, and our heart is restless, until it rests in Thee”. There is an interior thirst, an inner hunger, an anxiety.... This is why the Church is sent forth to proclaim to all the Word of God, imbued with the Holy Spirit. Because the Gospel of Jesus Christ is the greatest righteousness that can be offered to the heart of humanity which has a vital need for it, even though it does not realize this.  May the Lord grant us this grace: to have this thirst for righteousness which is the very desire to find him, to see God and to do good unto others. (General Audience 11 March 2020)