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A team of 200 priests comment on daily Gospel

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Liturgical day: Wednesday 13th in Ordinary Time

Gospel text (Mt 8,28-34): When Jesus reached Gadara on the other side, He was met by two demoniacs who came out from the tombs. They were so fierce that no one dared to pass that way. Suddenly they shouted, «What do you want with us, you, Son of God? Have you come to torture us before the time?». At some distance away there was a large herd of pigs feeding. So the demons begged him, «If you drive us out, send us into that herd of pigs». Jesus ordered them, «Go» (…).

The demon is a "number"

EDITORIAL TEAM evangeli.net (based on texts by Benedict XVI)
(Città del Vaticano, Vatican)

Today, Jesus Christ speaks of God’s "adversary". The beast, the power opposed to God, has no name but a number: the seer in “Revelation” tells us "666 is this number". This time, he introduces himself as a "legion". But it is a number, and it makes men numbers.

A signal? While the demon "cannot be proven", those who lived through the world of the concentration camps know what that means: the terror of that world is rooted on the fact that it obliterates men’s faces, it obliterates their history. It makes man a number, an exchangeable cog in one big machine. He is his function, nothing more. And if functions are all that exists, man, too, is nothing else than a function. Whatever is not a function is nothing. The beast is a number and it makes men numbers.

—O Lord, because you have a name and give me a name and call me by my name, I am not for you some function in a cosmic machinery. I am your son!