Voices ever ancient, ever new. Sunday-Week27-2013.

“And the apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.” (Luke 17:5)

In commenting on this verse from the Gospel according to Saint Luke from today’s Mass Readings, Cyril of Alexandria writes:

“They ask, “Add faith to us.” They do not ask simply for faith, for perhaps you might imagine them to be without faith. They rather ask Christ for an addition to their faith and to be strengthened in faith. Faith partly depends on us and partly is the gift of the divine grace. The beginning of faith depends on us and our maintaining confidence and faith in God with all our power. The confirmation and strength necessary for this comes from the divine grace. For that reason, since all things are possible with God, the Lord says that all things are possible for him who believes. The power that comes to us through faith is of God. Knowing this, blessed Paul also says in the first epistle to the Corinthians, “For to one is given through the Spirit the word of wisdom, to another the word of knowledge according to the same Spirit, and to another faith in the same Spirit.” You see that he has placed faith also in the catalogue of spiritual graces. The disciples requested that they might receive this from the Savior, contributing also what was of themselves. By the descent upon them of the Holy Spirit, he granted it to them after the fulfillment of the dispensation. Before the resurrection, their faith was so feeble that they were liable even to the charge of being “little of faith.” (Commentary on Luke, Homilies 113-116)”

Almighty ever-living God,
Who in the abundance of Your kindness
surpass the merits and the desires
of those who entreat You,
pour out your mercy upon us
to pardon what conscience dreads and
to give what prayer does not dare to ask.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
Who lives and reigns with You
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Glory to You Father, Son and Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen. Alleluia!