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Today’s Gospel
for the family

Today's Gospel + image + catechesis

September 16th: Memorial of Saints Cornelius, Pope, and Cyprian, Bishop, Martyrs

Gospel text (Jn 17,11b-19): Jesus looked up to heaven and prayed, «¡Holy Father, keep them in your Name that you have given me». Jesus looked up to heaven and prayed, «I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world whereas I am going to you. Holy Father, keep them in your Name that you have given me, so that they may be one, just as we are. When I was with them, I kept them safe in your Name, and not one was lost except the one who was already lost, and in this the Scripture was fulfilled.

»But now I am coming to you and I leave these my words in the world that my joy may be complete in them. I have given them your word and the world has hated them because they are not of the world; just as I am not of the world. I do not ask you to remove them from the world but to keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world; consecrate them in the truth —your word is truth. I have sent them into the world as you sent me into the world, and for their sake, I go to the sacrifice by which I am consecrated, so that they too may be consecrated in truth».

Today we celebrate at the same time two saints of the primitive Church (s. III). St. Cornelius was one of the first popes. Its name means "strong as a horn." And so it was: a strong pope to defend the teaching of Jesus, especially with respect to the forgiveness of sins. A section of the Church, headed by Novatian, intended not to admit or forgive those who had faltered in the faith during persecutions (remember that Christ did not come to heal the healthy but the sick).

Meanwhile, in Africa it was Bishop St. Cyprian who had to put peace in these discussions. Cyprian was severe but not inflexible with those who had "fallen" (leaving faith).

"We need the Church!" St. Cyprian said: " No one can have God for his Father, who does not have the Church for his mother."