Commentary for Sunday: 19th September

Mark 9, 30-37:

Sunday, 19 September 2021 (25th O. T.  b)


This Sunday’s Gospel tells us that Jesus was instructing his disciples, and among other things he said to them: “The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men, and they will kill him, and after his death days he will rise again in three days. But they did not understand what he was saying, and they were afraid to ask him.

They were “on a different wavelength”. They are still thinking about honours and preferences. Jesus has to make clear to them the conditions for being his disciple: servants of others, starting with the lowliest.

There are many Christians who have not understood (accepted?) the content of Jesus’ words. It is easier for them to accommodate their desires to the desires of this world and to crave for them, than to accept some Christian principles that are difficult for us. It is difficult for us to accept the daily cross, the difficulties that life presents us with, the hardships of evil, sickness or the lack of necessary means.

We find it difficult to understand and live what Jesus asks of us. We all want to be applauded, to be admired, to be considered. Who would like to be the last or the servant of all? “I have not come to be served, but to serve and to give my life for all”, Jesus tells us. And he did. If we want to be his followers we will have to accept this criterion in our lives.

At the Second Vatican Council, the Church (all Christians) declared itself “servant of humanity”, not master and mistress, all-knowing and all to be served. Jesus gave himself for us, and we must learn to give ourselves for others. However much it may cost us.


Juan Ramón Gómez Pascual, cmf


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