Memorial of Saint Monica

First Scripture Reading
1 Thessalonians 2: 1-8
Gospel Reading
Matthew 23: 23-26

Opening Prayer

Lord Jesus, Savior, Brother and Teacher, like Paul we have been misunderstood, rashly judged and persecuted. We know how it hurts, especially from those people we have tried most to love. Help us not to collapse in self-pity, nor strike back in vengeance. We can be so devastating with destructive missiles of word, action or silence. Transform us that we not be the ones who judge others with misunderstanding, narrow-mindedness, mean-spiritedness nor rashness. Help us to trust that You, and You alone, read the human heart. Keep our eyes, not on the faults and failings of others, but rather on the creation of Your kingdom of mercy and justice. Give us the courage to look to the areas of our own conversion and work at cleansing ourselves, before we ever dare focus on the dirt of others. We need Your help, Lord of Compassion and Mercy.

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