Fr. Ruben’s Homily for Sunday, September 23, 2018

Twenty-fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 134

Reading 1: Wism. 2:12, 17-20

Responsorial Psalm: Ps. 54:3-4, 5, 6 and 8

Reading 2: Jas. 3:16—4:3

Alleluia: 2 Thes. 2:14

Gospel: Mk. 9:30-37

 

Have you ever asked yourself, what is your mission, why are you here on earth? This is a question that concerns us all, everyone has a special mission, during our life we meet people who leave a teaching that points to something more important than themselves because they understood the will of God for their life’s.

What is your mission? We hear in today’s Gospel the mission of Jesus. Jesus began his ministry even before he was born; he was present at the moment of creation, then he left the comfort of his kingdom to enter into human history. He was Incarnate in the most holy and precious womb, the womb of Mary. Then he died on the Cross to accomplish his mission and the prophesies foretold by many prophets like Isaiah who said:

“He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed” (Is. 53:5).

That was Jesus mission as he was trying to tell his disciples. He came into the world to give us life and even more abundantly, (Jh. 10:10). But the disciples were more concerned about a position of honor in Jesus kingdom than paying attention to Jesus words. Until that moment their ignorance does not allow them to see the difficult moment that is coming on them. The disciples have their eyes focused on things that are bananas, they want the best position, and they argue among themselves to see who’s best, Jesus does not say anything, he expects them to finally pay attention to what has been speaking to them that, “The Son of Man is to be handed over to men and they will kill him.”

We can say that the disciples want to preach themselves at this point and not Jesus. They want to do things that would deserve them the first place of honor. They oppose the idea of suffering, because suffering and death is not compatible with their plans.

What is your mission, for what reason did God put you in the midst of your family, friends and this community? God always has a plan for each one of us; maybe it is not for you to have the best places of honor where you work or study, neither to be the most popular. That is circumstantial, secondary, the true mission of every Christian is found in today’s gospel when Jesus finally asks his disciples about the discussion they had, “What were you arguing about?[1]

As always Jesus flips the coin, “If anyone wishes to be first, he shall be the last of all and the servant of all” The servant of all? Really? But what do I gain for serving others?

Service is the essence of every Christian, serving without expecting anything in return knowing that the reward is found in God. That God himself has given us an example of how to serve the most needy, rejected, hateful and non-popular people, even if it means to give our lives for them.

I do not get a good feeling when I see in the media or even on Facebook people who record themselves doing something good so that the people would praise them. They have already received their reward, (Mt 16: 17-19).

Let me give you some examples of people who have served others and endure much suffering doing so very well:

Saint Martin of Porres, he experience a lot of suffering because of his color and mixed-race. In Peru, by law, all descendants of African or Indians were not allowed to become full members of religious orders. He was accepted into the Convent only as a volunteer serving others. His actions reflected a big love for God and neighbor. He is depicted holding a broom in his hands, always doing what others saw as less important. A life devoted to serving others, enduring many obstacles indeed.

What about Saint Maximilian Kolbe? Take me instead of him; I’ll die for him, set him free. A very Christ center life always putting himself before others to the point of giving his own life for the good of a stranger man so that he could return to his family.

Who was the first being that refused to serve people? With the phrase, “Non Serviam” the devil refuse to attend the creation of God, he was the very first to protest Gods will. And after him many people who came to earth to do their will and not Gods. The list is big just by looking at history. People who want others to serve them in every wicked thing they propose.

However, The King of Kings did not come to be served but to serve. By doing that he has shown us the way to God, service and Cross, he is the role model of humility and has chosen those who humble themselves to serve those who are in most need.

Jesus is among us every day in those who are hungry; thirsty; naked; sick or in prison; I was hungry: did you give me something to eat?

What is your mission?

 

 

[1] They had been discussing among themselves on the way who was the greatest