29th Sunday of Year B
No one can escape suffering, writes Father Hawkswell, “but Christians believe that God works within it.” (JumpStory)
FATHER VICENT HAWKSWELL
BC CATHOLIC | 2021
This Sunday’s Readings speak of suffering, especially the suffering that is the consequence of sin and, paradoxically, is the remedy for sin.
As C.S. Lewis shows, suffering “is inherent in the very existence of a world where souls can meet” (The Problem of Pain). We can expect, then, to find it built into the world God gives us to enter into love with him.
“We must think of love as suffering,” says Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. To say yes to love is to risk suffering, for “love means being dependent on something that perhaps can be taken away from me.” To say no to love is to decide that rather than “bear this risk,” see “my self-determination limited,” or “depend on something I cannot control,” I would “rather not have love.”
Fr. Michael Chua
KUALA LUMPUR | 2018
“Can you drink the cup that I must drink?” If we are being asked that same question today, I believe that our first and primary concern would be about hygiene. “Can I actually catch a disease from someone who shares my cup?” Picture that anxiety that is running through your mind as you see a friend request to share a bottle of water with you or wants to taste your drink.
If you are worried about sharing a cup because it can make you sick, the context of our Lord’s request is far more insidious. Sharing a cup with the Lord can get you killed! When the Lord asked His disciples if they were willing to drink from the same cup that He would be drinking, He was making an allusion to an important position in the king’s court – the Royal Cupbearer. The Royal Cupbearer was an official of high ranking who enjoyed the King’s trust.
FR. AUSTIN FLEMING
A CONCORD PASTOR COMMENTS | 2018
The point of these scriptures, as the church has assembled them here, is that we are called to serve one another as Jesus served us. That’s a tall order, especially when phrased in terms of being “crushed in infirmity and affliction” and being a “servant to others, a slave to all.” Sometimes it’s helpful to work with the language scripture uses – not to water it down, not to dilute it – but to make it more accessible in the hope that we might be able to see a way to live what the Word asks of us. So, let’s look at what it might mean to be a servant of others, even a slave of all – in terms we can grasp and live up to.
The quick answer here is that we look for ways to serve others with our time, our talents and our treasure. You’ve heard this trio of T words before. It’s used a lot because it’s true. One of our most precious commodities is our time. Sharing and giving our time away for others is an important way to serve our neighbor. Time, and talent. .. We all have gifts and talents to help us serve one another. Some of these are more obvious, more attention-getting than others – but all our gifts and talents are meant to be shared for the sake of the common good. And treasure.Some of us have more treasure than others but treasure is a relative category. A $5 offering from one person might actually be more and more generous than a $100 offering from someone else, depending on our individual, personal resources. Our treasure is given us by God to be shared, especially with those in need.
MSGR. JOSEPH PELLEGRINO
HOW TO BE A GOAT
DIOCESE OF ST. PETERSBURG | 2021
There is an expression in the world of sports that a particular player deserves to be called the GOAT. Now years ago, if an athlete was called a goat, it meant that his performance at a game was so poor that he bore much of the responsibility for the team losing. But that is not how the term goat is used now. To be a goat is to be the Greatest of All Time. Here in Tampa Bay, our football team has Tom Brady, a player who is commonly referred to as the GOAT. People may claim that Michael Jordan is the GOAT in professional basketball. Others might say that the title GOAT belongs to LeBron James.
Some athletes are far from being GOATS, but act as though they were. They have an entourage of people who are continually telling them how wonderful they are. They lord it over their teammates as though the others were second rate citizens in their world of wonderfulness.
But you don’t have to go to sports to witness those who are so full of themselves that they act as though they are goats. James and John in today’s gospel acted that way. They felt that they should sit at the right hand and left hand of the Lord when Jesus came into His Glory. They wanted to lord it over the other disciples. Or, at least they wanted it to be clear that they were much better than the others. Jesus told them that they were clueless. They didn’t understand where greatness came from.
FR. GEORGE SMIGA
BUILDING ON THE WORD | 2003
What was the first gift that Jesus gave us? When he began his earthly ministry, what was the first step that Jesus took? What was the foundation that he laid upon which he intended to build everything else? Jesus’ first step was not to erect a building. The first Christian church was not built until centuries after his death. Nor was his first step to write the scriptures. The first writings of the Christian scriptures were not composed until decades after Jesus’ ministry ended. Nor was his first gift, to give the Spirit. The Spirit did not descend until after the resurrection. Nor did Jesus begin by instituting the Eucharist. That sacred meal which we share was established on the night before he died.
No, Jesus’ first step was to establish a community. Immediately after his baptism, he went out and called disciples who could share life with one another. Therefore, the first gift that Jesus gave to us, is the gift of one another. He did this because he knew that if his teaching was to be understood, if his miracles were to have an effect, if his mission was to impact the world, he would need a band of men and women who shared a common identity. He would need disciples who would discover in their relationships with each other his very presence in their midst.
FR. JOHN KAVANAUGH, SJ
SUNDAY WEB SITE | 1997
Most of us have heard of the contrast between “Christology from below” and “Christology from above.” This opposition sneaks into most theological discussions, whether they are about dogma, scripture, morality, mission, or salvation.
Most of us are not theologians, but we can still sense what it is all about. The “above” emphasizes the divinity of Christ, the transcendent; the “below” emphasizes the full humanity of the Jesus of history.
Christology from above is the “old” way of thinking. It presumes that God, from above, enters history in Jesus, the eternal Word made flesh. Its strongest insights support our intuitive recognition of human inadequacy. It demands an admission that we are not enough. It calls for intervention and assistance from a reality beyond our own.
29th Sunday of Year B
THE PATHS OF GOD’S SAVING ACTION
SOURCE: THE WORD EXPOSED (2018)
The Pittsburgh Oratory
JESUS GAVE HIS LIFE AS A RANSOM FOR MANY
SOURCE: Homily Archive
Homily for the Twenty-eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time preached by Father Peter Gruber, C.O. at The Pittsburgh Oratory.
INCREDIBLE INSPIRING HUMILITY OF THE LORD
Fr. Larry Young, Pastor of Ascension Catholic Church in Bowie, MD talks about what he’s planning for this weekend’s homily.
SOURCE: SUNDAY GAME PLAN (2018)
FR. JUDE LANGEH, CMF
THE SUFFERING SERANT LEADER
John Michael Talbot
WHOEVER WISHES TO BE GREAT AMONG YOU WILL BE YOUR SERVANT
29th Sunday of Year B
BASILICA OF THE NATIONAL SHRINE
Celebrant & Homilist: Msgr. Raymond East
OCT 17, 2021 | OCT 21, 2018 | OCT 18, 2015 | OCT 20, 2012 | OCT 18, 2009
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29th Sunday of Year B
Friends, power and honor, in and of themselves, are not a bad thing, but we wreak havoc when we ask for them in the wrong spirit. When we beseech the Lord with our desires, let us ask for what God wants for us rather than what our egos have determined to be good.
Sunday Podcast Archive
by Bishop Robert Barron . October 21, 2018
Friends, all three readings for this weekend center around a theme that was very familiar to the ancient audiences who first took them in but that is rather alien to us. I’m talking about the theme of substitutionary sacrifice. A very basic problem that we have when we seek to understand this idea is that we are marked, through and through, by a strong individualism: everyone acts and speaks for himself and takes responsibility for his own actions. But ancient people lived within a far more collective or corporate consciousness.
by Bishop Robert Barron . October 18, 2015 .
When the ego grabs power and honor for itself, things get dangerous and dysfunctional very quickly. The ego will want to use power, not for God’s purposes, but for its own exaltation & defense. In today’s gospel reading, Jesus confronts a misguided desire for power within both James and John so as to direct them to real spiritual power, which offers them — and us — the greatest freedom.
by Bishop Robert Barron . October 21, 2012
In today’s Gospel, the apostles James and John ask Jesus to be given positions of glory in Christ’s kingdom. Jesus reminds us that His moment of glory is His death on the Cross, and that if we want to partake in this glory we must commit to a self-sacrificing love, not a self aggrandizing ambition.
by Bishop Robert Barron . October 18, 2009
This Sunday’s readings highlight the idea of redemptive suffering. The revelation of Christ changes our disposition towards the difficulties of life, filling these experiences with the potential for goodness. In his Incarnation, Christ did not evade the often harsh realities of human experience, but he accepted them, knowing that he would be with us in all things. The challenge for us is that in the face of the inevitable challenges of life is this: will we accept hardship as an occasion to grow in holiness and deepen our relationship with the Lord.
by Bishop Robert Barron . October 22, 2006
James and John want to sit at Jesus’ right and left when the Lord comes into his glory. What they don’t realize is that his glory is the moment of his crucifixion. To be at his right and his left at his enthronement is, therefore, to be crucified with him, to be willing to give oneself totally away. Be careful what you ask for!
by Bishop Robert Barron . October 19, 2003
What does it mean to say that Jesus died for our sins? How precisely does his cross save us? The first Christians saw sin as a sort of imprisonment, like being held for ransom, and in the dying and rising of Jesus, they experienced freedom. What freed them was God’s solidarity with them in their fear, even their fear of death. How do you experience the power of Jesus’ death on the cross? How does it set you free?
Friends, in many ways, the second reading for this Sunday is the climax of the entire biblical revelation. We find a detailed description of the heavenly Jerusalem, the holy city, coming down out of heaven to earth. There is no temple in this city because the whole city has become a temple. What began in the book of Genesis now comes to its fulfillment: the marriage of heaven and earth—the beautiful, integrated place of right praise.
29th Sunday of Year B
Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, shares thoughts on preaching pro-life on the 29th Sunday of Year B. He talks about how in the Kingdom of God, differences in roles never imply differences in the inherent human dignity of those who hold these roles. For more pro-life tips, resources and updates, visit http://www.ProLifePreaching.com.
Father Frank Pavone
NO DISTINCTION IN ROLE IMPLIES AN INEQUALITY IN DIGNITY
SOURCE: Priests for Life
Life Issues Homilies
Lifeissues.net website publishes articles directly related to issues raised in Evangelium Vitae, and related homilies by Fr. Al Cariño, O.M.I., Fr. Tony Pueyo, and others.
Once, a journalist saw Mother Teresa of Calcutta who was then engaged in picking up the dying from the streets and caring for them. He told her, “Not even for a million dollars would I do a job like that.” “Neither would I,” answered Mother Teresa.
One way to arrive in a village is from the top using a helicopter. This disturbs the serenity of rural life. Everybody who is asleep is awakened. The vehicle stirs up a lot of dust and creates a lot of noise. Everyone goes running over to see the strange vehicle and whoever it is ferrying. What a triumphant arrival. On the other hand one can quietly arrive walking or on the back of water buffalo.
If you truly love someone who you see is suffering, you will want to share their suffering in some way. You will not allow them to suffer alone. To allow someone to suffer at a distance, without entering into his/her suffering in any way, is not love at all.
“Servire, non serviri,” to serve not to be served. This theme runs through all the readings this Sunday. As we celebrate World Mission Sunday, let us be inspired by the story of that great missionary who was proclaimed a saint by Pope Benedict last Sunday, Fr. Damien the leper. His life and his work illustrate what is meant by missionary service.
God could give us a free pass, but why would he? No value, no glory in that. Besides, we would be ‘uneasy’ among so many who made sacrifices for others and out of place in heaven. Easy come, easy go. Whatever our relationships, fathers, mothers, sons, daughters, aunts, uncles, cousins, employers, employees, friends, neighbors and strangers – our glory is serving others, not ourselves, both as benefactors and beneficiaries, all in one, in the sacrifices we make.
James and John ask Jesus to “do whatever they ask of him.” Jesus uses their asking for places of honor in the kingdom as an opportunity to talk about true discipleship, which is seen not in positions of glory, but in places of service. Indeed, for followers of Christ, it is a “race to the bottom” – not seeking to be recognized so much as to be in service for God.