25th Sunday C
The Commentaries Summarised
As a Church we are in a web of wisdom that comes to us both from tradition and contemporary writers. This section offers a summary of some commentaries on the Gospel. Also below is a list of the books and articles that have been consulted in compiling this Sunday's "Pray As You Can" and which could be used for further reading.
This Sunday's Commentary
There are three sections to this Sunday’s Gospel which are profoundly interlinked. Jesus has begun the long journey to Jerusalem. He passes through Galilee without drawing attention to himself as he wishes to focus on preparing his disciples for what will happen at his destination. The verb tense used for ‘teaching’ implies that this was an action repeated over a period of time. Jesus’ prediction of his Passion was in blunter, clearer terms than the first prediction, which we heard last week, but as far as the disciples were concerned it was as though they had heard nothing. They had closed down in fear - they simply could not and would not understand. Instead, in a great example of misplaced concerns, they argue over who is the greatest among them. Just what was the standard by which they were measuring their greatness? We have no firm idea but we can be fairly sure it wasn’t how faithfully they would follow Jesus to the cross or serve each other.
Within the house, Jesus, assuming the position of a Teacher, sits and calls to him his inner circle, the Twelve, who certainly would have seen themselves as the leaders of the group. Then in two tender actions he takes and embraces a child. Children, while loved, were the least vulnerable members in the society of that time. They had no rights, they had no voice. No-one would defer to them for anything of importance. Yet Jesus teaches that in how we treat this person of no consequence will reveal whether or not we have welcomed him, whether or not we have encountered God. On the cross he will become a person despised and rejected. The way to recognising God there will come through learning to recognising him in the least important members of society.