Sunday Gospel reflections: Make a commitment to serve

Twenty-ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year B)

Photo: simpson33/iStock

There was a time when Mission Sunday had an air of triumphalism: we are, after all, the largest Christian Church in the world, and we wish and work for nothing less than to bring the Gospel to the ends of the earth. 

Now the bigger picture has changed dramatically. Numbers have been decreasing, our churches are often half empty, clergy are aging, scandals have substantially eroded the credibility of our Church, and we still fall far short of our dream of launching an all-out effort for a “new evangelization.”

We should not take pride in being considered the greatest or the most influential, but rather in our ability and our commitment to serve humankind. What should matter to us is not how we will regain influence and exposure in the media, but how we can live out the message of Jesus’ Gospel and be true and loving servants to others.

This Sunday is precisely about being at the service of the little ones — about being out there, like Jesus, bearing the sufferings and the infirmities of humankind. Who would deny that suffering has in no way diminished in the world around us? Instead of lamenting the greatness of the past, we do better to reflect on how in the present we can alleviate the suffering of great multitudes and restore peace and hope in their hearts.

— Jean-Pierre Prévost


Isaiah 53:10–11

Psalm 33:4–5, 18–19, 20, 22

Hebrews 4:14–16

Mark 10:35–45 or 10:42–45

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