Friday of the Twentieth week in Ordinary Time

Saint Matthew 22:34-40.
by Daily Gospel | Source: Daily Gospel
Book of Ruth 1:1.3-6.14b-16.22.

Once in the time of the judges there was a famine in the land; so a man from Bethlehem of Judah departed with his wife and two sons to reside on the plateau of Moab.

Elimelech, the husband of Naomi, died, and she was left with her two sons,
who married Moabite women, one named Orpah, the other Ruth. When they had lived there about ten years,
both Mahlon and Chilion died also, and the woman was left with neither her two sons nor her husband.

She then made ready to go back from the plateau of Moab because word reached her there that the LORD had visited his people and given them food.

Again they sobbed aloud and wept; and Orpah kissed her mother-in-law good-bye, but Ruth stayed with her.

"See now!" she said, "your sister-in-law has gone back to her people and her god. Go back after your sister-in-law!"

But Ruth said, "Do not ask me to abandon or forsake you! for wherever you go I will go, wherever you lodge I will lodge, your people shall be my people, and your God my God.

Thus it was that Naomi returned with the Moabite daughter-in-law, Ruth, who accompanied her back from the plateau of Moab. They arrived in Bethlehem at the beginning of the barley harvest.

Psalms 146(145):5-6.7.8-9a.9bc-10.

Happy those whose help is Jacob's God, whose hope is in the LORD, their God,
The maker of heaven and earth, the seas and all that is in them, Who keeps faith forever,
secures justice for the oppressed, gives food to the hungry. The LORD sets prisoners free;
the LORD gives sight to the blind. The LORD raises up those who are bowed down; the LORD loves the righteous.

The LORD protects the stranger, sustains the orphan and the widow, but thwarts the way of the wicked.
The LORD protects the stranger, sustains the orphan and the widow, but thwarts the way of the wicked.
The LORD protects the stranger, sustains the orphan and the widow, but thwarts the way of the wicked.
The LORD shall reign forever, your God, Zion, through all generations! Hallelujah!

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 22:34-40.

When the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together,
and one of them (a scholar of the law) tested him by asking,
Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?

He said to him, "You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.

This is the greatest and the first commandment.

The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.

The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments."

Commentary of the day
Saint Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787), Bishop and Doctor of the Church
8th conference for the Octave of Christmas

"The greatest and the first commandment"

If we are to love God fully in heaven we must first of all love him fully on earth. The degree of love we have for God at the end of our life will be the measure of our love for God during eternity. Would we like to gain the certainty of never being separated from this sovereign Good in the present life? Let us compel Him ever more with the bonds of our love, saying with the Bride in the Song of Songs: «I found him whom my soul loves: I took hold of him and will not let him go» (3,4). How has the consecrated Bride taken hold of her Beloved? «With the arms of charity,» William answers...; «It is with the arms of charity that we take hold of God,» Saint Ambrose repeats. Happy, then, is the one who can exclaim together with Saint Paulinus: «Let the rich possess their riches, let kings possess their kingdoms: our glory, our wealth and the kingdom that is ours is Christ!» And with Saint Ignatius: «Only grant me your love and your grace and I shall be rich enough.» Make me love you and may I be loved by you; I neither wish for, nor need wish for anything besides.

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