|MK 9:30-37 |
Jesus and his disciples left from there and began a journey through Galilee, but he did not wish anyone to know about it for he was teaching his disciples, saying to them, “The Son of Man is to be betrayed into human hands, and they will kill him, and three days after being killed, he will rise again.” But they did not understand what he was saying and were afraid to ask him.
Then they came to Capernaum; and when he was in the house he asked them, “What were you arguing about on the way?” But they were silent, for on the way they had argued with one another who was the greatest.
He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, “Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.” Then he took a little child and put it among them; and taking it in his arms, he said to them, “Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.”
|New Revised Standard Version Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright 1989, 1993, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Approved by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. |
|Alison Quinn '14, '16 M.A. |
For the past two years, I've lived in an intentional faith community with three women and two men. We began our time as a community working out arguments on dishes or where people left shoes around the house. Sometimes, we found ourselves consumed by small disagreements and not focused on our community or our individual relationships with each other.
Much like the disciples in today’s reading, we found ourselves missing a message of hope and resurrection. I'm often struck by the disciples’ silence after Jesus asks the question, “What were you arguing about on the way?” It is as if they immediately knew they were missing something greater. Jesus goes on to welcome a child and tell his disciples that “whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.” He reminds us of our identity as children of God; in our welcoming of another, we welcome Christ.
It was during our first year as a community when one of my housemates reminded me of the message in this Gospel. As we were walking around town, he made a point to strike up conversation with strangers. When I asked him why he did this, he replied, “Ali, every encounter is sacred.” He didn’t even think twice about this response—he lived Christ’s message.
Whether we are welcoming children, living with family members, or experiencing moments of suffering, how often do we find ourselves focusing on small disagreements or details and not looking at the other or ourselves as members of the body of Christ? The Son of God became man so that we may become part of his body. Through his life, death, resurrection and ascension, we have the opportunity to love God—especially through our love of each other.
May we never forget our identity as children of God and remember that every encounter is sacred.
Father Terry Ehrman, CSC
Heavenly Father, through sin we curve inward upon ourselves, selfishly desiring to be served and honored by others. Open our hearts in humility to receive the gift of the cross and so give ourselves away in service to others for love of Christ. Amen.
|St. Paschal Baylon, you were the Franciscan brother known as the “Saint of the Eucharist"--pray for us! |