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Today's Gospel + short theological explanation

Tuesday of the Twenty-third Week in Ordinary Time

Gospel text (Lk 6,12-19): Jesus went out into the hills to pray, spending the whole night in prayer with God. When day came, He called his disciples to him and chose twelve of them whom He called apostles: Simon, whom He named Peter, and his brother Andrew, James and John; Philip and Bartholomew; Matthew and Thomas; James son of Alpheus and Simon called the Zealot; Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who would be the traitor. Coming down the hill with them, Jesus stood on a level place. Many of his disciples were there and a large crowd of people (…).

The Church: the ministerial priesthood and the Hierarchy

Fr. Antoni CAROL i Hostench (Sant Cugat del Vallès, Barcelona, Spain)

Today, we remember Christ while praying all night before choosing —from his disciples— the twelve Apostles. They —who never cease to be the people of God— will have a "mission within the mission" of the Church: to nurture, to encourage and to sustain the sanctity of all the faithful.

Some are called by God to the "ministerial priesthood": they are the "ordained faithful". A power has been bestowed upon them; but this is a "sacred power" to dispense the Bread and to preach the Word: a power to serve. They form the "Hierarchy", something which today sounds bad because it is seen with worldly eyes. In the Church the hierarchical element is not a privileged "status" but a "functional element", whose radical aim is to serve our brothers. "Ministry" exactly means service. The Pope’s title, precisely, is "The Servant of the Servants of God".

—O Jesus, we request from You pastors with a heart like Yours. You, Who came not to be served but to serve.