Saturday - Ordinary Time
1) Opening prayer
Father of heaven and earth,
hear our prayers,
and show us the way to your peace in the
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
2) Gospel Reading - Luke 22,24-30
also began between them about who should be reckoned the greatest; but he said
to them, 'Among the gentiles it is the kings who lord it over them, and those
who have authority over them are given the title Benefactor. With you this must
not happen. No; the greatest among you must behave as if he were the youngest,
the leader as if he were the one who serves. For who is the greater: the one at
table or the one who serves? The one at table, surely? Yet here am I among you
as one who serves!
'You are the
men who have stood by me faithfully in my trials; and now I confer a kingdom on
you, just as my Father conferred one on me: you will eat and drink at my table
in my kingdom, and you will sit on thrones to judge the twelve tribes of
• In Luke’s Gospel, the context of the discussion
as to whom was the greatest among them is that of the Last Supper. Jesus has
just finished celebrating the Eucharist, the greatest sign of the gift of self
to his brothers and sisters (Lk 22, 14-20). He had just finished showing them
that the greatest proof of love is to give one’s life for the brothers (cf. Jn
15, 13). The more Jesus tries to descend in order to be able to serve, the more
the disciples try to ascend in order to command. They discuss among themselves
as to who is the greatest. All the Gospels recall the attitude of the disciples
who want to be the greatest, and recall also the response of Jesus (Lk 9,
46-48; Mk 10, 41-45; Mt6 20, 24-28; Jn 13, 12-16) . All this indicates that
they do not understand what is happening. Suffering was not in accordance with
the idea that they had of the Messiah . The disciples, did not only not
understand, but they continued to hold on to their personal ambitions. They did
not understand the proposal of Jesus. They were concerned about their own
interest. This reflects the clashes and the tensions which existed in the
communities, in the time of Mark and which continue to exist even now in our
• The response of
Jesus: let it not be like that among you. Jesus reacts firmly and speaks about the exercise of power.
At that time, those who held the power did not have any consideration for the
people. They acted according to the way in which they thought they should (cf.
Mk 6, 17-29). The Roman Empire controlled the world and had it submitted with
the force of the arms and like this, through tributes, taxes and duties,
succeeded in concentrating the wealth of the people in Rome. in the hands of a
few. The society was characterized by the repressive and abusive exercise of
power, but, in spite of that the great succeeded in making people call them
benefactors. Jesus had another proposal. He says: “For you it will not be like
that: but he who is the greatest among you should become like the smallest and
the one who governs like the one who serves!” He teaches not to use the
privileges, he is against rivalry. He inverts the system and insists on the
service as a remedy against personal ambition.
• The summary of the
life of Jesus. Jesus
defines his mission and his life: “I have not come to be served but to serve!” He
has come to give his own life for the salvation of many. He is the Messiah, the
Servant, the announced by the Prophet Isaiah (cf. Is 42, 1-9; 49, 1-6; 50, 4-9;
52, 13-53, 12). He learnt from his Mother who says. “Behold the handmaid of the
Lord!” (Lk 1, 38). A completely new proposal for the society of his time.
• You are those who
have persevered with me in my trials. To follow Jesus means three things:
(a) To imitate the
example of the Master: Jesus was the model to be recreated in the life of
the disciple – man or woman (Jn 13, 13-15). Living together every day permitted
a constant confrontation. In this “School of Jesus” only one subject was
taught: The Kingdom! And this Kingdom was recognized in the life and in the
practice of Jesus.
(b) To participate
or share in the destiny of the Master. Those who followed Jesus had to
commit themselves with him “to persevere with him in the trials” (Lk 22, 28),
also in persecution (Jn 15, 20; Mt 10, 24-25). They should be ready to take up
their cross and to die with him (Mk 8, 34-35; Jn 11, 16).
(c) To have the life
of Jesus within ourselves. After the Passover, a third dimension: identification
with Jesus, alive, living in the community. The first Christians sought to
follow the path of Jesus who had died in defence of life and had risen by the
power of God (Ph 3, 10-11). It is a question of the mystical dimension in the
following of Jesus, the fruit of the Spirit: “I live, but it is no longer I who
lives, but it is Christ who lives in me” (Gal 2, 20).
4) Personal questions
• Jesus summarizes his life in this phrase: I have
not come to be served but to serve. Can I also summarize my life in a similar
• To follow Jesus, that is, to imitate his life,
to persevere with him in trials, to bear within us his life. How do these three
dimensions of the following of Jesus take place in me?
5) Concluding prayer
Even if great
they will never
reach your faithful.
You are a refuge for me, you guard me in
with songs of deliverance you surround me. (Ps 32,6-7)