Prayer of the Day
Feast of St. Bede the Venerable, Priest & Doctor of the ChurchMay 25th, 2016
Today’s Gospel is all about what Mark describes as “the way” of the Christian life. Jesus calls the twelve aside to forewarn them about the frightful passion and death he will have to undergo in Jerusalem. However, he tells them that this suffering will end in a glorious victory over death. His own destiny is the model for all disciples. This is “the way,” suffering is the doorway to glory. Unfortunately the twelve seem totally oblivious to his words about his imminent suffering and death. Their incomprehension is glaring. They are thinking only of power and glory in his kingdom. James and John go so far as asking Jesus for privileged positions in his forthcoming kingdom. Jesus asks them if they are prepared to drink the cup of suffering that he must drink. The two brothers have no idea about the meaning of his words and so they assure him that they are. Jesus takes their willingness seriously and tells them that they will suffer but it is the Father’s prerogative to assign places in glory. The others are angry with James and John perhaps because they wanted the best positions for themselves. Jesus uses the occasion for another lesson in discipleship. Christians must display a countercultural attitude towards leadership. There is no place for power trips, self-promotion, rivalry or perks. Authority and leadership must be service. Jesus himself came to serve not to be served. The disciple must be like the master.
Lord Jesus we pray for all those who are now experiencing the bitter cup of suffering in their lives at this time. Amen