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A team of 200 priests comment on daily Gospel

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Liturgical day: Monday 26th in Ordinary Time

1st Reading (Zech 8:1-8): This word of the Lord of hosts came: Thus says the Lord of hosts: I am intensely jealous for Zion, stirred to jealous wrath for her. Thus says the Lord: I will return to Zion, and I will dwell within Jerusalem; Jerusalem shall be called the faithful city, and the mountain of the Lord of hosts, the holy mountain. Thus says the Lord of hosts: Old men and old women, each with staff in hand because of old age, shall again sit in the streets of Jerusalem. The city shall be filled with boys and girls playing in its streets. Thus says the Lord of hosts: Even if this should seem impossible in the eyes of the remnant of this people, shall it in those days be impossible in my eyes also, says the Lord of hosts? Thus says the Lord of hosts: Lo, I will rescue my people from the land of the rising sun, and from the land of the setting sun. I will bring them back to dwell within Jerusalem. They shall be my people, and I will be their God, with faithfulness and justice.
Responsorial Psalm: 101
R/. The Lord will build up Zion again, and appear in all his glory.
The nations shall revere your name, o Lord, and all the kings of the earth your glory, when the Lord has rebuilt Zion and appeared in his glory; when he has regarded the prayer of the destitute, and not despised their prayer.

Let this be written for the generation to come, and let his future creatures praise the Lord: «The Lord looked down from his holy height, from heaven he beheld the earth, to hear the groaning of the prisoners, to release those doomed to die».

The children of your servants shall abide, and their posterity shall continue in your presence. That the name of the Lord may be declared in Zion; and his praise, in Jerusalem, when the peoples gather together, and the kingdoms, to serve the Lord.
Verscicle before the Gospel (Mk 10:45): Alleluia. The Son of Man came to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many. Alleluia.

Gospel text (Lk 9,46-50): One day the disciples were arguing about which of them was the most important. But Jesus knew their thoughts, so he took a little child and stood him by his side. Then He said to them, «Whoever welcomes this little child in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me, welcomes the one who sent me. And listen: the one who is found to be the least among you all, is the one who is the greatest».

Then John spoke up, «Master, we saw someone who drove out demons by calling upon your name, and we tried to forbid him because he doesn't follow you with us». But Jesus said, «Don't forbid him. He who is not against you is for you».

«The one who is found to be the least among you all, is the one who is the greatest»

Prof. Dr. Mons. Lluís CLAVELL
(Roma, Italy)

Today, on their way to Jerusalem heading towards the Passion, «the disciples were arguing about which of them was the most important» (Lk 9:46). Every day the media, and even our conversations, are full of comments regarding the importance of some people: whether others or ourselves. This kind of logic, which is strictly human, quite often results in an unreasonable yearning for success, recognition, admiration, gratitude, or in a lack of peace if these expected rewards fail to reach us.

Jesus' reaction to the thoughts of his disciples —and, perhaps, their remarks, too— reminds us of the old prophets' style. Before words come gestures. Jesus «took a little child and stood him by his side» (Lk 9:47). Afterwards, comes the teaching: «the least among you all, is the one who is the greatest» (Lk 9:48). —O Jesus, why is it so difficult for us to accept this is not an utopia for those who are not involved in the hustled and bustled in overwhelming activity, fighting one another for success, whereas, thanks to your grace, it could, instead, be enjoyed by all of us? If we could, we would deep down have much more peace and would be able to do our job with more serenity and joy.

This attitude is also the source where joy comes from, when seeing that others work well for God, with a different style to ours, but always on Jesus' name. The disciples wanted to prevent it. The Master, instead, protects those other persons. Once again, the fact of feeling as God's small children makes it easy for us to open our hearts to everybody while growing in joy, peace and thankfulness. This doctrine is what deserves St. Therese of Lisieux the title of “Doctor of the Church”: in her book Story of a Soul, she admires the Church as a beautiful garden of flowers, where she is happy to consider herself just a little flower. By the side of the great saints —roses and white lilies— there are the little ones —daisies and violets— intended to give pleasure to God's eyes, when He gazes at the Earth.