The Gospel Today
Thursday of the Fourth Week of Easter
When Jesus had washed the disciples’ feet, he said to them:
“Amen, amen, I say to you, no slave is greater than his master
nor any messenger greater than the one who sent him.
If you understand this, blessed are you if you do it.
I am not speaking of all of you.
I know those whom I have chosen.
But so that the Scripture might be fulfilled,
The one who ate my food has raised his heel against me.
From now on I am telling you before it happens,
so that when it happens you may believe that I AM.
Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send
receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”
Reflection (Sem. Rodel Aclan)
The world has not changed much since the time of Jesus, in so far as the idea of authority and servanthood is concerned. Those who are in authority are still the recipients of service and the lowly people or the poor are the providers of that service. Jesus, two thousand years ago, has given us the example of what true leadership and authority means. It all about service.
Elections for national and local positions is fast approaching in our country. Candidates are again promising to serve the people once they get elected. But the question is, do they really serve the way Jesus has taught us? Is the authority they receive really rooted in service? In choosing who to vote we are guided by none the less than our Lord Jesus. When he washes the feet of the apostles, He gives true meaning to leadership and authority.
The life of a priest and his ministry are firmly rooted and anchored in service. The life of a priest is full of opportunities to serve the people. Witnessing to Jesus is an everyday invitation for the priest as he fulfils his ministry. However, the temptations to go against the example of Jesus is also very real in the life of a priest. The attention and special care given by the people for the priest, as an expression in of their high regard for him can be a gateway to a life of entitlement rather than of service.
Thus, as a priest-in-process, seminary formation plays a big role in inculcating the values of Christ in me, especially the value of service.Seminary formation is full of opportunities to render service to my fellow seminarians and other members of the community.
For me, service, concretizes the love we have for others. Jesus, because of His love for us has served us by taking up the Cross. At the same time, my love for my fellow seminarians and other members of the community must also be seen and felt in the service I do for them.