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July 25, 2020

St. James

Mt 20: 20-28

Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to him with her sons, and kneeling before him, she asked a favor of him. And he said to her, “What do you want?” She said to him, “Declare that these two sons of mine will sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your kingdom.” But Jesus answered, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I am about to drink?” 

They said to him, “We are able.” He said to them, “You will indeed drink my cup, but to sit at my right hand and at my left, this is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father.” When the ten heard it, they were angry with the two brothers. 

But Jesus called them to him and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. It will not be so among you; but whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be your slave; just as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.”

New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.

 

What are our motivations?

More than a year has passed since the college admissions scandal first made headlines. In March of last year, news broke that celebrity parents had been investing thousands of dollars to build false resumes for their children in order to get them admitted into prestigious schools.  Some parents purchased impressive SAT scores or presented their children as top athletes in sports they never even played. Clearly, admission into a prestigious institution was worth the risk for them. But why? 

There are many possible answers, but do any of them point to an authentic desire for education? Isn’t that the purpose of college anyway? Think of how many less prestigious universities would have gladly accepted these students! Their motivations are skewed!

This scandal sheds some modern light on today’s Gospel for me. The mother of James and John deserves some credit; she’s bold, and she seeks a certain good for her sons. But has she forgotten why her sons started following Jesus in the first place? The sons of Zebedee will reign with Christ, but never for worldly acclaim.  

How often do I perform good acts for the wrong reasons? How often do I ask Christ for things not appointed to me by the Father?

Jarvis Williams is wrapping up his year of service at Cristo Rey Jesuit in Houston as a part of the Volunteer Service Corps.

 

Prayer

Lord, grant me the grace that all my intentions, actions, and operations may be ordered purely to the service and praise of Thy Divine Majesty.

—Preparatory Prayer of St. Ignatius of Loyola


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

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Ignatian spirituality reminds us that God pursues us in the routines of our home and work life, and in the hopes and fears of life's challenges. The founder of the Jesuits, Saint Ignatius of Loyola, created the Spiritual Exercises to deepen our relationship with Christ and to move our contemplation into service. May this prayer site anchor your day and strengthen your resolve to remember what truly matters.

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July 25, 2020

St. James

Mt 20: 20-28

Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to him with her sons, and kneeling before him, she asked a favor of him. And he said to her, “What do you want?” She said to him, “Declare that these two sons of mine will sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your kingdom.” But Jesus answered, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I am about to drink?” 

They said to him, “We are able.” He said to them, “You will indeed drink my cup, but to sit at my right hand and at my left, this is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father.” When the ten heard it, they were angry with the two brothers. 

But Jesus called them to him and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. It will not be so among you; but whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be your slave; just as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.”

New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.

 

What are our motivations?

More than a year has passed since the college admissions scandal first made headlines. In March of last year, news broke that celebrity parents had been investing thousands of dollars to build false resumes for their children in order to get them admitted into prestigious schools.  Some parents purchased impressive SAT scores or presented their children as top athletes in sports they never even played. Clearly, admission into a prestigious institution was worth the risk for them. But why? 

There are many possible answers, but do any of them point to an authentic desire for education? Isn’t that the purpose of college anyway? Think of how many less prestigious universities would have gladly accepted these students! Their motivations are skewed!

This scandal sheds some modern light on today’s Gospel for me. The mother of James and John deserves some credit; she’s bold, and she seeks a certain good for her sons. But has she forgotten why her sons started following Jesus in the first place? The sons of Zebedee will reign with Christ, but never for worldly acclaim.  

How often do I perform good acts for the wrong reasons? How often do I ask Christ for things not appointed to me by the Father?

Jarvis Williams is wrapping up his year of service at Cristo Rey Jesuit in Houston as a part of the Volunteer Service Corps.

 

Prayer

Lord, grant me the grace that all my intentions, actions, and operations may be ordered purely to the service and praise of Thy Divine Majesty.

—Preparatory Prayer of St. Ignatius of Loyola


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

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