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Faith Daily | 12 July 2022

PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p558

O Lord, we beseech you

mercifully to receive the prayers of your people

who call upon you,

and grant that they may both perceive and know

what things they ought to do,

and also may have grace and power

faithfully to fulfil them’

through Jesus Christ our Lord.


GOSPEL for the Day: Matthew 11: 20-24

20Then he began to reproach the cities in which most of his deeds of power had been done, because they did not repent. 21“Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the deeds of power done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22But I tell you, on the day of judgment it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon than for you. 23And you, Capernaum, will you be exalted to heaven? No, you will be brought down to Hades. For if the deeds of power done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. 24But I tell you that on the day of judgment it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom than for you.”


Pretty damning words by Jesus, no escaping. These towns refused to change, to turn their lives around, despite Jesus working miracle after miracle there, and teaching the Good News. However, Father Joseph Donders reflects that the deepest emotion Jesus is expressing is actually sorrow……….

What Jesus says sounds like a menace and a warning. In a number of translations the “Alas” of our version is translated “Woe”. But what we hear him express is sorrow. Sorrow that they didn’t accept the most valuable thing in their world.

Alas for you who continue the old ways; alas for you who don’t want to change. It isn’t an angry man who speaks, but one with a broken heart.


FINAL PRAYER Christopher Ellis “Patterns of Prayers for Christian Worship” 1991

Spirit of God,

you are the breath of creation,

the wind of change that blows through our lives,

opening us up to new dreams and new hopes,

new life in Jesus Christ.

Forgive us our closed minds

which barricade themselves against new ideas,

preferring the past to what you might want to do

through us tomorrow.

Forgive our closed eyes

which fail to see the needs of your world,

blind to opportunities of service and love.

Forgive our closed hands

which clutch our gifts and our wealth

for our own use alone.

Forgive us our closed hearts

which limit our affections to ourselves

and our own.

Spirit of new life,

forgive us and break down the prison walls of our selfishness,

that we might be open to your love

and open for the service of your world,

through Jesus Christ our Lord.


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