READING I: 1 Samuel 24:3-21
RESPONSORIAL: Psalms 57:2, 3-4, 6 and 11
GOSPEL: Mark 3:13-19
There is in the church a beautiful continuity right from the time of Jesus until today; that is the succession of popes and bishops. There is an order in the church and it has been there from the beginning. Here Jesus gives certain powers and responsibilities to his chosen twelve. These shall be passed on by the sacramental and symbolic laying on of hands from generation to generation right down to the present day. Any bishop or priest not in this direct line is not recognized by the church. This is defining of how the church sees herself as the continuation of Jesus' work and presence on earth. It is beautiful when seen in humility and obedience....very annoying when viewed with pride and hostility.
The church is not a social club, it is the mystical body of Christ on earth and as such Jesus left us with very clearly defined leaders to whom he expects us to be obedient.
Christ suffered for us (cf. 1 Pt 2:21)
This day calls us to reflect on the suffering of Christ. Following Christ the Suffering Servant, Christians are called to solidarity with all who suffer. The closer we come to the cross of Christ the closer we come to one another. (source