Crying Out the Whole Day

Lent 2014: Readings from Augustine

Have mercy on me, Lord, for to you I have cried out the whole day” (Ps 95:3). “The whole day” it says, not just one day. By “the whole day” understand all time, from the time the whole body of Christ has been groaning under pressure until the end of the world when the pressure will pass, that person groans and cries out to God, and each of us has by proportion its own cry in that entire body. You’ve cried out in your days, and your days will pass; someone else succeeds you and cries out in his days. You here, this one there, that one someplace else: the body of Christ is crying out the whole day, its members departing and succeeding one another. One person extending down to the end of the world, the members of Christ are crying out, some of them already rest in him, some of them are crying out now, others will cry out when we ourselves have entered our rest, and after them still others will cry out. It is the voice of the entire body of Christ that is heard here: “To you I have cried the whole day.” (Augustine, EnPs 85, 5; PL 37, 1085)

About the Author

Rev. Joseph A. Komonchak, professor emeritus of the School of Theology and Religious Studies at the Catholic University of America, is a retired priest of the Archdiocese of New York.

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