Whoever Wishes to be First Among You Shall be Your Slave – Matthew 20:26-28, Mark 10:32-45
The mother of Apostles James and John approached Jesus make a request that Jesus makes a command that her two sons sit, one at His right and the other at His left side in His Kingdom.
But Jesus answers her that whoever will get that privilege must earn it. To earn it, one must do the will of our Heavenly Father. Jesus says that His right and left side is prepared and reserved for those for who will be chosen by our Heavenly Father and not for any other person.
Now, Jesus gives us one of the ways of pleasing our Heavenly Father so that we can deserve that covetted place in His Kingdom. That is, embracing servanthood among ourselves. This means that instead of sometimes demanding services from others, we should always offer the same services to them. It also means that God created us in order to serve others. God did not create us to be served. When all of us fulfill the mandate we were created for, we will realize that it feels good, fulfilling and rewarding when serving others as opposed to when we are being served.
In the Kingdom of God, things are opposite of what the evil world demands. In this world, whoever is great or is the master, is the one who is being served but in the Kingdom of God the opposite is true.
Jesus knows the mandate given to Him by God very well. He says that God sent Him here on earth to serve us and give His life as ransom for many. Now my brothers and sisters in Christ, do you know why God created you? Have you fathomed why God takes His precious time to sustain you here on earth? Do you know what mandate you have ben given? Well, you can get the answers to these salient questions when you first and foremost know God, love Him, be ready to serve Him and finally praise and glorify Him forever.
Let us today commit to serving God by serving others. Let us seek to become servants instead of masters and through this, God may make us one of those who will sit on the right or the left side of Jesus in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Prayer: Lord Jesus Christ, we would like to sit at Your right and left side in Your Kingdom. Therefore help us and give us the strength to continue fulfilling our mandate given to us by our Heavenly Father. May we seek to serve others more than we seek to be served as this is one of the sure ways of pleasing our Heavenly Father. Amen.
Fr Thomas is to take up a new appointment as PP of St Malachy’s, Belfast. We welcome Fr Raymond Mc Cullagh who will become our new Parish Priest on the 5th August.
ORDINATION Rev John O’Laverty will be ordained to the priesthood at St Patrick’s Church, Legamaddy (Parish of Bright) on Sunday 31 July at 3.00pm
John will celebrate his first Mass in thanksgiving on Monday 1st August at 7pm, also in St Patrick’s.
I ask that you and your parish communities keep John in prayer at this time.
Yours in Christ
Bishop of Down and Connor