February 28, 2013

Luke 16: 19-31

“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who longed to satisfy his hunger with what fell from the rich man’s table; even the dogs would come and lick his sores.

The poor man died and was carried away by the angels to be with Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried. In Hades, where he was being tormented, he looked up and saw Abraham far away with Lazarus by his side. He called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in agony in these flames.’

But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that during your lifetime you received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in agony. Besides all this, between you and us a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who might want to pass from here to you cannot do so, and no one can cross from there to us.’

He said, ‘Then, father, I beg you to send him to my father’s house—for I have five brothers—that he may warn them, so that they will not also come into this place of torment.’ Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; they should listen to them.’

He said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”

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 (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations)

Sharing Our Gifts

My Dad loved classical music and wanted his children to have some exposure to it. It wasn’t forced on us, but in the background of Sunday afternoons he’d have it playing in the living room as he read the paper. It seeped into our souls. Today I play classical music on the iPad as I read the New York Times on the screen. I had a comfortable life then; I’ve a comfortable life now.

Artur Rubenstein, a renowned pianist, came to our city when I was a boy. On a winter night Dad took me and my sister, with whom I shared a seat, to the standing-room-only concert. We were dressed in our best, me 10, she 11, and Dad 38. As we walked to the concert hall from the car I heard and saw a boy, my age, with his shoeshine kit.

He was smiling and offering to shine shoes for a quarter. I wanted to run past that kid for it was uncomfortable. Why him? Not me? Why me, not him? After the concert, he was still there, now begging to shine shoes. He was crying. The message was clear that he had to bring money home. Dad gave me money to give to him. I did it quickly and moved on.

Dad and I gave from our surplus and that was good, but the memory of the boy crying out in the night lingered and lingers on. Today’s Gospel stirs up this memory and a belief held that giving from one’s surplus is good and, yet, this is not enough. A point of the rich man and Lazarus story is to consider ALL the gifts we have been given by God, Our Father, not just the table droppings.

Everything we have is gift to be given away to those whom we know and to the strangers we are yet to meet. The “surplus” and “substance” of our very lives are gifts from Him to be used, to be broken out, to be passed around and shared. Jesus cares for all God’s people through us who are storehouses of gifts.

Whose voices are crying out to me today in need of what I have been given by the Father? How does what I have flow to those in need? What can we celebrate? What are the blocks?

—Fr. Walter Deye, S.J., Socius/Executive Assistant to the Provincial, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits.

Prayer

Jesus, I’m tired of the “lava waste” of my life. Help me these holy days to stop and listen to the music. Water the roots of my heart; strengthen my relationships with your good grace. Make my soul sing in the midst of all the life and love you offer just today.

—Fr. Walter Deye, S.J., Socius/Executive Assistant to the Provincial, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits.


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

Prayer

Jesus, I’m tired of the “lava waste” of my life. Help me these holy days to stop and listen to the music. Water the roots of my heart; strengthen my relationships with your good grace. Make my soul sing in the midst of all the life and love you offer just today.

—Fr. Walter Deye, S.J., Socius/Executive Assistant to the Provincial, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

Sharing Our Gifts

My Dad loved classical music and wanted his children to have some exposure to it. It wasn’t forced on us, but in the background of Sunday afternoons he’d have it playing in the living room as he read the paper. It seeped into our souls. Today I play classical music on the iPad as I read the New York Times on the screen. I had a comfortable life then; I’ve a comfortable life now.

Artur Rubenstein, a renowned pianist, came to our city when I was a boy. On a winter night Dad took me and my sister, with whom I shared a seat, to the standing-room-only concert. We were dressed in our best, me 10, she 11, and Dad 38. As we walked to the concert hall from the car I heard and saw a boy, my age, with his shoeshine kit.

He was smiling and offering to shine shoes for a quarter. I wanted to run past that kid for it was uncomfortable. Why him? Not me? Why me, not him? After the concert, he was still there, now begging to shine shoes. He was crying. The message was clear that he had to bring money home. Dad gave me money to give to him. I did it quickly and moved on.

Dad and I gave from our surplus and that was good, but the memory of the boy crying out in the night lingered and lingers on. Today’s Gospel stirs up this memory and a belief held that giving from one’s surplus is good and, yet, this is not enough. A point of the rich man and Lazarus story is to consider ALL the gifts we have been given by God, Our Father, not just the table droppings.

Everything we have is gift to be given away to those whom we know and to the strangers we are yet to meet. The “surplus” and “substance” of our very lives are gifts from Him to be used, to be broken out, to be passed around and shared. Jesus cares for all God’s people through us who are storehouses of gifts.

Whose voices are crying out to me today in need of what I have been given by the Father? How does what I have flow to those in need? What can we celebrate? What are the blocks?

—Fr. Walter Deye, S.J., Socius/Executive Assistant to the Provincial, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits.


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

Luke 16: 19-31

“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who longed to satisfy his hunger with what fell from the rich man’s table; even the dogs would come and lick his sores.

The poor man died and was carried away by the angels to be with Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried. In Hades, where he was being tormented, he looked up and saw Abraham far away with Lazarus by his side. He called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in agony in these flames.’

But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that during your lifetime you received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in agony. Besides all this, between you and us a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who might want to pass from here to you cannot do so, and no one can cross from there to us.’

He said, ‘Then, father, I beg you to send him to my father’s house—for I have five brothers—that he may warn them, so that they will not also come into this place of torment.’ Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; they should listen to them.’

He said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”

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 (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations)


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

February 27, 2013

Matthew 20:17-28

While Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, he took the twelve disciples aside by themselves, and said to them on the way, “See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and scribes, and they will condemn him to death; then they will hand him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified; and on the third day he will be raised.”

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 (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations)

Sharing God’s Love

We have all heard the term “helicopter parents.” Educators are well familiar with such parents. They truly want the best for their children, but they feel bound to make certain everything in their child’s life goes “just right.” But isn’t it through the bumps and bruises, the mistakes and failures of life that we learn so much and become better people?

In today’s gospel, the mother of the sons of Zebedee might be the first recorded helicopter parent as she asks Jesus to seat her two sons in the places of highest honor in his kingdom. Jesus will have none of it. Rather, he says “Anyone who wants to become great among you must be your servant, and anyone who wants to be first among you must be your slave.”

God, Our Father, calls us forth to a life of service with infinite, absolute, unconditional, and unrelenting love. This is a love which is so true and respectful of us that he allows us to make mistakes and even sin against him. His greatest desire is that we choose to share in his divinity and in turn share his love with every person he puts in our lives.

—David McNulty, Provincial Assistant for Advancement, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits

Prayer

Lord, only through your grace can we keep our focus on what really matters — service to others. We ask that your Spirit helps us to discern a healthy self-interest in contrast to a self-centered interest. Help us to be more concerned with doing right rather than being right. And increase our trust in your promise that the fullness of life belongs to those dedicated to serving others.

 

—The Jesuit Prayer Team


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

Prayer

Lord, only through your grace can we keep our focus on what really matters — service to others. We ask that your Spirit helps us to discern a healthy self-interest in contrast to a self-centered interest. Help us to be more concerned with doing right rather than being right. And increase our trust in your promise that the fullness of life belongs to those dedicated to serving others.

 

—The Jesuit Prayer Team

 


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

Sharing God’s Love

We have all heard the term “helicopter parents.” Educators are well familiar with such parents. They truly want the best for their children, but they feel bound to make certain everything in their child’s life goes “just right.” But isn’t it through the bumps and bruises, the mistakes and failures of life that we learn so much and become better people?

In today’s gospel, the mother of the sons of Zebedee might be the first recorded helicopter parent as she asks Jesus to seat her two sons in the places of highest honor in his kingdom. Jesus will have none of it. Rather, he says “Anyone who wants to become great among you must be your servant, and anyone who wants to be first among you must be your slave.”

God, Our Father, calls us forth to a life of service with infinite, absolute, unconditional, and unrelenting love. This is a love which is so true and respectful of us that he allows us to make mistakes and even sin against him. His greatest desire is that we choose to share in his divinity and in turn share his love with every person he puts in our lives.

—David McNulty, Provincial Assistant for Advancement, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

Matthew 20:17-28

While Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, he took the twelve disciples aside by themselves, and said to them on the way, “See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and scribes, and they will condemn him to death; then they will hand him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified; and on the third day he will be raised.”

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 (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations)


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

February 26, 2013

Matthew 23: 1-12

Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, “The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat; therefore, do whatever they teach you and follow it; but do not do as they do, for they do not practice what they teach. They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on the shoulders of others; but they themselves are unwilling to lift a finger to move them.

They do all their deeds to be seen by others; for they make their phylacteries broad and their fringes long. They love to have the place of honor at banquets and the best seats in the synagogues, and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces, and to have people call them rabbi. But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all students.

And call no one your father on earth, for you have one Father—the one in heaven. Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Messiah. The greatest among you will be your servant. All who exalt themselves will be humbled, and all who humble themselves will be exalted.

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 (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations)

Serving Others

Many people confuse authority and power with the ability to influence or control others. Frequently we consider a person to be important if he or she is a politician, a player of professional sports, a musician, a TV or movie star, or is very wealthy. Often we do not look closely at the character of the celebrity or “important” person. Is the person honest and trustworthy? Does the person care about and help others? Is the person working for the Kingdom of God and all humanity, or only for selfish ends?

In today’s Gospel, Jesus explains how we should understand authority and power. To put it simply, authority and power are not about the ability to influence or control others, but rather about serving others. Jesus cautions us not to be like the scribes and Pharisees, religious people who were hypocritical and liked to hold places of honor and have titles. They preached and spoke the correct words but did not live them out. They liked to be thought of well by others, but would not lift a finger to help them.

Jesus emphasized that his disciples—including us—should be prayerful and honest. We should not take titles or think of ourselves as better than others. Jesus wants us to remember that a title can separate us from others. A title can also lead us to think we are better than others. Jesus underscores the fact that all human beings are equal and children of God. Human beings have only one teacher and master: Jesus the Christ. With the knowledge that all human beings are equal and no one is master over another, Jesus wants us to discern that the greatest among us must be the servant of all.

What ways can I be a better servant of God and God’s people today?

—Br. John Moriconi, S.J., Provincial’s Secretary, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits

Prayer

Lord, regardless of our circumstances, despite our status in life, or other’s perspective about us, we believe that you call us to “greatness.”  As we move through our day, guide us to be attentive to those “great” moments when we realize the opportunity to serve another. And when our day comes to a close, inspire us, Lord, to evaluate the merits of the day by answering one overarching question: How well did I serve today?”

—The Jesuit Prayer Team


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

Prayer

Lord, regardless of our circumstances, despite our status in life, or other’s perspective about us, we believe that you call us to “greatness.”  As we move through our day, guide us to be attentive to those “great” moments when we realize the opportunity to serve another. And when our day comes to a close, inspire us, Lord, to evaluate the merits of the day by answering one overarching question: How well did I serve today?”

—The Jesuit Prayer Team


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

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February 28, 2013

Luke 16: 19-31

“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who longed to satisfy his hunger with what fell from the rich man’s table; even the dogs would come and lick his sores.

The poor man died and was carried away by the angels to be with Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried. In Hades, where he was being tormented, he looked up and saw Abraham far away with Lazarus by his side. He called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in agony in these flames.’

But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that during your lifetime you received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in agony. Besides all this, between you and us a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who might want to pass from here to you cannot do so, and no one can cross from there to us.’

He said, ‘Then, father, I beg you to send him to my father’s house—for I have five brothers—that he may warn them, so that they will not also come into this place of torment.’ Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; they should listen to them.’

He said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”

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 (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations)

Sharing Our Gifts

My Dad loved classical music and wanted his children to have some exposure to it. It wasn’t forced on us, but in the background of Sunday afternoons he’d have it playing in the living room as he read the paper. It seeped into our souls. Today I play classical music on the iPad as I read the New York Times on the screen. I had a comfortable life then; I’ve a comfortable life now.

Artur Rubenstein, a renowned pianist, came to our city when I was a boy. On a winter night Dad took me and my sister, with whom I shared a seat, to the standing-room-only concert. We were dressed in our best, me 10, she 11, and Dad 38. As we walked to the concert hall from the car I heard and saw a boy, my age, with his shoeshine kit.

He was smiling and offering to shine shoes for a quarter. I wanted to run past that kid for it was uncomfortable. Why him? Not me? Why me, not him? After the concert, he was still there, now begging to shine shoes. He was crying. The message was clear that he had to bring money home. Dad gave me money to give to him. I did it quickly and moved on.

Dad and I gave from our surplus and that was good, but the memory of the boy crying out in the night lingered and lingers on. Today’s Gospel stirs up this memory and a belief held that giving from one’s surplus is good and, yet, this is not enough. A point of the rich man and Lazarus story is to consider ALL the gifts we have been given by God, Our Father, not just the table droppings.

Everything we have is gift to be given away to those whom we know and to the strangers we are yet to meet. The “surplus” and “substance” of our very lives are gifts from Him to be used, to be broken out, to be passed around and shared. Jesus cares for all God’s people through us who are storehouses of gifts.

Whose voices are crying out to me today in need of what I have been given by the Father? How does what I have flow to those in need? What can we celebrate? What are the blocks?

—Fr. Walter Deye, S.J., Socius/Executive Assistant to the Provincial, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits.

Prayer

Jesus, I’m tired of the “lava waste” of my life. Help me these holy days to stop and listen to the music. Water the roots of my heart; strengthen my relationships with your good grace. Make my soul sing in the midst of all the life and love you offer just today.

—Fr. Walter Deye, S.J., Socius/Executive Assistant to the Provincial, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits.


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

Prayer

Jesus, I’m tired of the “lava waste” of my life. Help me these holy days to stop and listen to the music. Water the roots of my heart; strengthen my relationships with your good grace. Make my soul sing in the midst of all the life and love you offer just today.

—Fr. Walter Deye, S.J., Socius/Executive Assistant to the Provincial, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

Sharing Our Gifts

My Dad loved classical music and wanted his children to have some exposure to it. It wasn’t forced on us, but in the background of Sunday afternoons he’d have it playing in the living room as he read the paper. It seeped into our souls. Today I play classical music on the iPad as I read the New York Times on the screen. I had a comfortable life then; I’ve a comfortable life now.

Artur Rubenstein, a renowned pianist, came to our city when I was a boy. On a winter night Dad took me and my sister, with whom I shared a seat, to the standing-room-only concert. We were dressed in our best, me 10, she 11, and Dad 38. As we walked to the concert hall from the car I heard and saw a boy, my age, with his shoeshine kit.

He was smiling and offering to shine shoes for a quarter. I wanted to run past that kid for it was uncomfortable. Why him? Not me? Why me, not him? After the concert, he was still there, now begging to shine shoes. He was crying. The message was clear that he had to bring money home. Dad gave me money to give to him. I did it quickly and moved on.

Dad and I gave from our surplus and that was good, but the memory of the boy crying out in the night lingered and lingers on. Today’s Gospel stirs up this memory and a belief held that giving from one’s surplus is good and, yet, this is not enough. A point of the rich man and Lazarus story is to consider ALL the gifts we have been given by God, Our Father, not just the table droppings.

Everything we have is gift to be given away to those whom we know and to the strangers we are yet to meet. The “surplus” and “substance” of our very lives are gifts from Him to be used, to be broken out, to be passed around and shared. Jesus cares for all God’s people through us who are storehouses of gifts.

Whose voices are crying out to me today in need of what I have been given by the Father? How does what I have flow to those in need? What can we celebrate? What are the blocks?

—Fr. Walter Deye, S.J., Socius/Executive Assistant to the Provincial, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits.


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

Luke 16: 19-31

“There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day. And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus, covered with sores, who longed to satisfy his hunger with what fell from the rich man’s table; even the dogs would come and lick his sores.

The poor man died and was carried away by the angels to be with Abraham. The rich man also died and was buried. In Hades, where he was being tormented, he looked up and saw Abraham far away with Lazarus by his side. He called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am in agony in these flames.’

But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that during your lifetime you received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner evil things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in agony. Besides all this, between you and us a great chasm has been fixed, so that those who might want to pass from here to you cannot do so, and no one can cross from there to us.’

He said, ‘Then, father, I beg you to send him to my father’s house—for I have five brothers—that he may warn them, so that they will not also come into this place of torment.’ Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; they should listen to them.’

He said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”

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 (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations)


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

February 27, 2013

Matthew 20:17-28

While Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, he took the twelve disciples aside by themselves, and said to them on the way, “See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and scribes, and they will condemn him to death; then they will hand him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified; and on the third day he will be raised.”

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 (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations)

Sharing God’s Love

We have all heard the term “helicopter parents.” Educators are well familiar with such parents. They truly want the best for their children, but they feel bound to make certain everything in their child’s life goes “just right.” But isn’t it through the bumps and bruises, the mistakes and failures of life that we learn so much and become better people?

In today’s gospel, the mother of the sons of Zebedee might be the first recorded helicopter parent as she asks Jesus to seat her two sons in the places of highest honor in his kingdom. Jesus will have none of it. Rather, he says “Anyone who wants to become great among you must be your servant, and anyone who wants to be first among you must be your slave.”

God, Our Father, calls us forth to a life of service with infinite, absolute, unconditional, and unrelenting love. This is a love which is so true and respectful of us that he allows us to make mistakes and even sin against him. His greatest desire is that we choose to share in his divinity and in turn share his love with every person he puts in our lives.

—David McNulty, Provincial Assistant for Advancement, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits

Prayer

Lord, only through your grace can we keep our focus on what really matters — service to others. We ask that your Spirit helps us to discern a healthy self-interest in contrast to a self-centered interest. Help us to be more concerned with doing right rather than being right. And increase our trust in your promise that the fullness of life belongs to those dedicated to serving others.

 

—The Jesuit Prayer Team


Please share the Good Word with your friends!

Prayer

Lord, only through your grace can we keep our focus on what really matters — service to others. We ask that your Spirit helps us to discern a healthy self-interest in contrast to a self-centered interest. Help us to be more concerned with doing right rather than being right. And increase our trust in your promise that the fullness of life belongs to those dedicated to serving others.

 

—The Jesuit Prayer Team

 


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Sharing God’s Love

We have all heard the term “helicopter parents.” Educators are well familiar with such parents. They truly want the best for their children, but they feel bound to make certain everything in their child’s life goes “just right.” But isn’t it through the bumps and bruises, the mistakes and failures of life that we learn so much and become better people?

In today’s gospel, the mother of the sons of Zebedee might be the first recorded helicopter parent as she asks Jesus to seat her two sons in the places of highest honor in his kingdom. Jesus will have none of it. Rather, he says “Anyone who wants to become great among you must be your servant, and anyone who wants to be first among you must be your slave.”

God, Our Father, calls us forth to a life of service with infinite, absolute, unconditional, and unrelenting love. This is a love which is so true and respectful of us that he allows us to make mistakes and even sin against him. His greatest desire is that we choose to share in his divinity and in turn share his love with every person he puts in our lives.

—David McNulty, Provincial Assistant for Advancement, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits


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Matthew 20:17-28

While Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, he took the twelve disciples aside by themselves, and said to them on the way, “See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and scribes, and they will condemn him to death; then they will hand him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified; and on the third day he will be raised.”

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 (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations)


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February 26, 2013

Matthew 23: 1-12

Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, “The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat; therefore, do whatever they teach you and follow it; but do not do as they do, for they do not practice what they teach. They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on the shoulders of others; but they themselves are unwilling to lift a finger to move them.

They do all their deeds to be seen by others; for they make their phylacteries broad and their fringes long. They love to have the place of honor at banquets and the best seats in the synagogues, and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces, and to have people call them rabbi. But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all students.

And call no one your father on earth, for you have one Father—the one in heaven. Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Messiah. The greatest among you will be your servant. All who exalt themselves will be humbled, and all who humble themselves will be exalted.

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 (http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations)

Serving Others

Many people confuse authority and power with the ability to influence or control others. Frequently we consider a person to be important if he or she is a politician, a player of professional sports, a musician, a TV or movie star, or is very wealthy. Often we do not look closely at the character of the celebrity or “important” person. Is the person honest and trustworthy? Does the person care about and help others? Is the person working for the Kingdom of God and all humanity, or only for selfish ends?

In today’s Gospel, Jesus explains how we should understand authority and power. To put it simply, authority and power are not about the ability to influence or control others, but rather about serving others. Jesus cautions us not to be like the scribes and Pharisees, religious people who were hypocritical and liked to hold places of honor and have titles. They preached and spoke the correct words but did not live them out. They liked to be thought of well by others, but would not lift a finger to help them.

Jesus emphasized that his disciples—including us—should be prayerful and honest. We should not take titles or think of ourselves as better than others. Jesus wants us to remember that a title can separate us from others. A title can also lead us to think we are better than others. Jesus underscores the fact that all human beings are equal and children of God. Human beings have only one teacher and master: Jesus the Christ. With the knowledge that all human beings are equal and no one is master over another, Jesus wants us to discern that the greatest among us must be the servant of all.

What ways can I be a better servant of God and God’s people today?

—Br. John Moriconi, S.J., Provincial’s Secretary, Chicago-Detroit Province Jesuits

Prayer

Lord, regardless of our circumstances, despite our status in life, or other’s perspective about us, we believe that you call us to “greatness.”  As we move through our day, guide us to be attentive to those “great” moments when we realize the opportunity to serve another. And when our day comes to a close, inspire us, Lord, to evaluate the merits of the day by answering one overarching question: How well did I serve today?”

—The Jesuit Prayer Team


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Prayer

Lord, regardless of our circumstances, despite our status in life, or other’s perspective about us, we believe that you call us to “greatness.”  As we move through our day, guide us to be attentive to those “great” moments when we realize the opportunity to serve another. And when our day comes to a close, inspire us, Lord, to evaluate the merits of the day by answering one overarching question: How well did I serve today?”

—The Jesuit Prayer Team


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