Saturday 25th July Saint James the Apostle
This James is the brother of John the Evangelist these two were called by Jesus, as they worked with their father in a fishing boat on the Sea of Galilee. Jesus had already called another pair of brothers from a similar occupation: Peter and Andrew. “He walked along a little farther and saw James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They too were in a boat mending their nets. Then he called them. So they left their father Zebedee in the boat along with the hired men and followed him”.
James was one of the favoured three who had the privilege of witnessing the Transfiguration, the raising to life of the daughter of Jairus, and the agony in Gethsemane.
Two incidents in the Gospels describe the temperament of this man and his brother. Saint Matthew tells that their mother came—Mark says it was the brothers themselves—to ask that they have the seats of honour in the kingdom. “Jesus said in reply, ‘you do not know what you are asking. Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?’ They said to him, ‘We can’.
Jesus then told them they would indeed drink the cup and share his baptism of pain and death, but that sitting at his right hand or left was not his to give—it “is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father” (Matthew 20:23b). It remained to be seen how long it would take to realize the implications of their confident “We can!”
The other disciples became indignant at the ambition of James and John. Then Jesus taught them all the lesson of humble service: The purpose of authority is to serve. They are not to impose their will on others, or lord it over them. This is the position of Jesus himself. He was the servant of all; the service imposed on him was the supreme sacrifice of his own life.
Gospel – Matthew 20:20-28
The mother of the sons of Zebedee approached Jesus with her sons and did him homage, wishing to ask him for something. He said to her, “What do you wish?”
She answered him, “Command that these two sons of mine sit, one at your right and the other at your left, in your Kingdom.” Jesus said in reply, “You do not know what you are asking. Can you drink the chalice that I am going to drink?” They said to him, “We can.” He replied, “My chalice you will indeed drink, but to sit at my right and at my left, this is not mine to give but is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father.”
When the ten heard this, they became indignant at the two brothers. But Jesus summoned them and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and the great ones make their authority over them felt. But it shall not be so among you. Rather, whoever wishes to be great among you shall be your servant; whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave. Just so, the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
The Gospel of the Lord
The Mass intention is for Jackie Stanislaus, RIP
This Gospel passage is the story of a mother who wanted only the best for her sons. Because she loved them, was proud of them, and because she had great dreams for them. She came to Jesus one day with an audacious request.
She asked that when Jesus comes into his Kingdom, that he would have one boy seated on his right side and the other seated on his left side. She wanted her sons to have the places of the highest honour. No small dreams here!
We live in a competitive and ambitious world. But not all of us are sucked into who is the biggest, the fastest, and the best. Jesus reminded his disciples that they are not to lord it over one another and this same principle applies to both you and I. We are called to be servants of one and other just as Jesus was servant of all.
- What are your ambitions?
- What do you dream about?
- What are your secret hopes for your own life?