Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time


Jesus and his disciples left from there and began a journey through Galilee, but he did not wish anyone to know about it. He was teaching his disciples and telling them, “The Son of Man is to be handed over to men and they will kill him, and three days after his death the Son of Man will rise.”  But they did not understand the saying, and they were afraid to question him. They came to Capernaum and, once inside the house, he began to ask them, “What were you arguing about on the way?”  But they remained silent. They had been discussing among themselves on the way who was the greatest.  Then he sat down, called the Twelve, and said to them, “If anyone wishes to be first, he shall be the last of all and the servant of all.”  Taking a child, he placed it in their midst, and putting his arms around it, he said to them, “Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me; and whoever receives me, receives not me but the One who sent me.”  Mark 9: 30 – 37

On this 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time hear the story of Jesus teaching the disciples about His death and resurrection.  The disciples did not understand and were afraid to question Him further.  Jesus then asks them what they were discussing on the road and they remained silent because they had been discussing who was the greatest among them.  Jesus knew what they had been discussing and told them if you wish to be first then you will have to be last and a servant.  I wonder how I would receive that message.

As I reflected on this Gospel, I found myself wondering the age-old questions – why do I try to be perfect?  Why am I afraid to make mistakes?  Why do I worry so much about things?  Why, why, why?  The answer seems simple when reflecting on today’s Gospel – that kind of thinking is a recipe for an unsatisfying life.  It is more important to listen to what Jesus calls greatness – to be willing to have a humble heart and serve others.  If we do this then we are living the life that Jesus calls us to.  May we take time this week to look at the invitation Jesus gives us to receive one another with childlike simplicity.