Memory of the Church

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Remembrance of Saint Therese of Lisieux (†1897), a Carmelite nun with a deep sense of mission of the Church.


Reading of the Word of God

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

I am the good shepherd,
my sheep listen to my voice,
and they become
one flock and one fold.
.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Job 19,21-27b

Pity me, pity me, my friends, since I have been struck by the hand of God. Must you persecute me just as God does, and give my body no peace? Will no one let my words be recorded, inscribed on some monument with iron chisel and engraving tool, cut into the rock for ever? I know that I have a living Defender and that he will rise up last, on the dust of the earth. After my awakening, he will set me close to him, and from my flesh I shall look on God. He whom I shall see will take my part: my eyes will be gazing on no stranger. My heart sinks within me.

 

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

I give you a new commandment,
that you love one another.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia

Unlike his friends, who are unable to enter his heart, Job clearly understands the meaning of the words they address to him: "If indeed you magnify yourselves against me, and make my humiliation an argument against me." They do not know how or do not want to enter their friend's situation to understand its deep causes and take on some responsibility for it. They stay on the outside and simply repeat a doctrine. Job cannot stand his friend's continued preaching. He is not interested in their speeches. The only one he wants to talk to is the Lord, whom he continues to call out, without stop, but from whom he has still not received any answer. Job goes as far as to describe the Lord as an adversary, as someone who does not listen to the cry of the oppressed, someone who even blocks his way, who strips away his reputation, who takes away his hope, who rises in anger against him, and who takes away his friendship. But there is more in Job's life. Even his relatives, his friends, and his acquaintances have fled from him and have vanished. They are horrified by his situation. The desperate cry that rises from Job's lips helps us understand the situation of so many poor men and women who have been abandoned by everyone, scorned and threatened. For most people they do not even exist. But Job does not stop calling on the Lord, "Have pity on me, have pity on me, O you my friends, for the hand of God has touched me!" However Job is convinced that God has not completely abandoned him. God is not like men and women. This is why a prayer of full of suffering and faith rises from Job's lips: "For I know that my Redeemer lives, and that at the last he will stand upon the earth...then in my flesh I shall see God, whom I shall see on my side, and my eyes shall behold, and not another."