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Friday, October 19, 2012



Mark 10:35-45

Podcast through the Australian Catholic Radio Online:

         When we were young, we were asked in the school “What do you want to become in the future? and Why?” Those questions became our innate urge towards a purpose-driven life!  They give us the power and determination to achieve something that will sustain us through life.  Achieving that goal defines our career and status in the community we live in.
         During the time of Jesus, Israel was longing and waiting for the Messiah to come.  They were expecting a political messiah who would free them from the Roman rule and establish the Kingdom of God.  The favour that James and John (in Matthew it was their mother) were asking from Jesus sounded ambitious and political.  Even the other disciples were angry with James and John because maybe they themselves were harboring the same ambition.   Jesus had to correct them by teaching them a lesson on true greatness.  The way to greatness in the eyes of God is through service to others.  Jesus Himself lived out His teaching because He came not to be served but to serve and gave His life for the ransom of many.
         In one way or another we were given the authority towards others or we were under the authority of others by being parents to our children, a manager or boss in our workplace, a political, school or a church leader, etc.  But greatness does not consist in the possession of that authority, not according to how many people we have at our disposal or the imposition of our will towards others.   We have seen some world leaders like Hitler, Idi Amin, Marcos, Polpot (to name a few) who lord it over their countries through dictatorship by having their authority felt through whimsical caprices and abuses.   Christian leadership hinges on servanthood.  Authority is given to us in the context of service.   That is why our Church authorities like the cardinals, bishops, priests, deacons, nuns and the religious should be servant-leaders.   Yes they are our leaders and have authorities over us but only because they are our servants and they should serve us as we deserve.  “It is not ourselves we preach but Christ Jesus our Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake” (2 Cor. 4-5).
         We may find ourselves serving others as part of our job and career hence we are being paid in remuneration of such service.  There is nothing wrong in that because of justice we need to be repaid for our efforts and time.   Some are even promoted because of exemplary works done for the company or the business.  But Christian service is more than that.  It is the giving of self to others because of one’s love to God and humanity.   We may receive our salary or remuneration because of our work but we can turn it into something more noble by putting love into our work.  We don’t even have to think of God all the time while doing it as long as we put love on it then our work is transformed into a service to humanity.   We don’t have to think big to do something explosive in changing the world for the better.  One little act of charity can change the world of one person who in turn will pay it forward through his service to others.  It becomes a domino effect that starts with one person doing a simple act of goodness.  This belief in the basic goodness of mankind explodes beyond proportion if each person celebrates his/her kindness towards others.  Then it goes beyond religion, race or color which transforms the world when love is expressed in charity through service to others. Because goodness is inherent in each one of us we have the power to change the world for the better than we first found it.  When this happens, an ordinary person becomes a saint in the eyes of God without him/her knowing it. 


  1. It is so good to receive your homilies by way of your blog, Father. Thank you.

    Margaret Meek.

  2. Dear Margaret, my pleasure and honour to share God's Word!