29th Sunday of Year B
This week’s Introductory video by Larry Broding. Scroll down page to view RCIA discussion questions
By Michael Marchal
Background: To get to the goal of our journey, we have to walk on the right path. Despite all Jesus’s attempts, the two sons of Zebedee do not get his message that the kingdom/reign comes, not to those with power, but to those who perform deeds of selfless service. That is the path that he chose to walk, even “in his human weakness.” (I suspect that good parents understand this message.)
- Which person in your life has modelled this kind of love for you? Why?
- How has coming to know Jesus changed your priorities?
- What is still making you stumble on your journey?
- How could the way you vote change our world?’
Practice: “Love is shown more in deeds than in words.” St. Ignatius Loyola. Once again, how do we treat the people in our lives who are providing us with a service—waiters, supermarket employees, the cashier at Walmart? If they do not feel appreciated and respected when we leave, then we are not preaching the Gospel. Ponder how you might need to change your behavior.
Related Page: Team RCIA Blog
SUNDAY WEB SITE
by Anne Osdieck
Discussion Questions (Gospel)
- Jesus told the disciples that the way to rank first is by serving others. What does unselfish service look like in your parish, work or home? Could it change the world in some way? How?
- What does Pope Francis say happens to us when we serve others? “Our fidelity to the Lord depends on our willingness to serve. And we know this often costs, because ‘it tastes like a cross.’ But, as our care and availability toward others grow, we become freer inside, more like Jesus. The more we serve, the more we are aware of God’s presence. Above all, when we serve those who cannot give anything in return, the poor, embracing their difficulties and needs with tender compassion: and we in turn discover God’s love and embrace there.” The true measure of success is what you give, not what you have. Pope Francis, Sept 19, 2021
More Questions (i.e. First and Second Reading)
SOURCE: Sunday Web Site (Saint Louis University)
by Larry Broding
Catholics speak of Jesus as priest, prophet, and king. All three images converge in Isaiah 53. The rejected leader (king) offers himself (priest) for the good of the community; his action reveals God’s will and actions (prophet). Where do you see Jesus? How is he your priest, prophet, and king?
Jesus is a compassionate figure in these verses. We should lean on his compassion as a way to grow closer to him. How have you depended on Jesus lately?
What sorts of ambitions do people have? How do these ambitions affect those around them?
How have others shown you Christian charity? How have they shown you and others their leadership qualities?
In what areas have you shown service in the past two weeks? How do you plan to serve others this week? What do your experiences and plans reveal about your leadership?
ECHOING GOD’S WORD
- Discuss the many ways in which our culture is at odds with the values suggested by Jesus for those who would become his disciples. How can we best oppose the principles of society that distract us from Christ’s Gospel? Do we fight a war with modern times? Can we “baptize” the culture in which we live? How much can we accommodate to modern times?
- Do you believe that we have watered down the conditions for Christian discipleship because we have found them difficult (impossible!)? What do you think has been changed to make following Christ easier? Which conditions do you think should be restored to their original integrity? Do you want to live like Saint Francis of Assisi?
- Describe the witness value of the life of a disciple like Saint Teresa of Calcutta who had chosen to live among and serve the “poorest of the poor.” Even if we do not follow her literally, does she present a value that we need to hear? How can we best live up to her example in the places and times where we are?
SMALL GROUP FAITH SHARING
- Have you ever heard of some Church leaders who craved recognition and sought influence among “big shots” in industry, in business, or in politics? Some parish priests play golf only with wealthy people because these people buy them drinks and pay their country club membership for them. What do you think of this practice? If it is not right for priests to do this, is it all right for laypeople to seek favors like this?
- When the Church gets too rich and too powerful, God strips it bare so that it might begin again and be more what Christ wanted it to be. Do you agree that this should happen to the Church? To your parish? To your parish priest?
- What evidence do you see that leaders in your groups, your family, your parish, your school, are actually and truly trying to serve others for the sake of Christ? How can you tell what their motives are? What are your motives when you try to help someone else?
- What are your motives going to be when you choose a career or a vocation for your future life?
- Considering the 2nd Reading, What do you think Jesus really thinks of you? How well do you think he understands the problems you face? How much do you think he actually likes you? How confident are you to approach the “throne of grace”—and how often do you do it to seek help for yourself when you need it?
- In the Gospel, what view of the Kingdom are James and John still clinging to? How do you think could they respond like this in light of Jesus’ words in verses 33—34?
- What is the “baptism” James and John are to be baptized with (verse 38)? What forms did that baptism take in their lives (see Acts 12:2 and Revelation 1:9)?
- What are the cup (Matthew 26:39), the baptism (Luke 12:49-50), and the glory (John 1:14, 17:5) as each applies to Jesus?
- What were some of the reasons, do you think, the other disciples were “indignant” at James and John (verse 41)?
- How does Jesus practice what he preached? In this context, what is a “ransom for many” (verse 45)? How is the death of Christ the ultimate service to all?
- Who in your experience has been a true servant leader? Are you a servant leader at work or home? Could you be? How? Do you resist following the servant’s path to greatness? What is one way could you serve this week?
Please be patient
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Please be patient
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Please be patient
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