In our country, we have this subculture of competition. It could be good if it is a healthy competition, although if we overdo it, it might develop in us characters, ideals, and behaviors that go against our values, such as envy, jealousy, hatred, and the like. Competition is still rampant today, and it is visible in schools, in workplaces, in politics, and even inside the family. I remember during our high school years when we were very competitive and grade-conscious, and we would do whatever we could to be ahead of other students. Now, I found it absurd because it did not help us to be more accommodating, loving and caring towards others.
The disciples of the Lord were arguing as to who among them was the greatest. They are with the Lord every day, and yet they were not able to apply one of the Lord’s teachings, that is, to become humble servants. It was frustrating for the Lord that there is still competition among his disciples, knowing that the hour of his passion is approaching. The Lord obviously did not want to leave his disciples with this kind of attitude because he knew it could cause division among them.
One of the things I am proud about our formation at Holy Apostles Senior Seminary is that we are taught to help each other thrive in our formative journey such that we discourage competition. After all, priesthood entails a good working relationship with other priests and with lay people. The Lord invites us to foster a more supportive and loving culture rather than one that promotes division and self-centeredness. Let us remember that we are one in and with Christ.
By: Sem. Edward R. Miana
Gospel: Mark 9:30-37
Jesus and his disciples left from there and began a journey through Galilee,
but he did not wish anyone to know about it.
He was teaching his disciples and telling them,
“The Son of Man is to be handed over to men
and they will kill him,
and three days after his death the Son of Man will rise.”
But they did not understand the saying,
and they were afraid to question him.
They came to Capernaum and, once inside the house,
he began to ask them,
“What were you arguing about on the way?”
But they remained silent.
For they had been discussing among themselves on the way
who was the greatest.
Then he sat down, called the Twelve, and said to them,
“If anyone wishes to be first,
he shall be the last of all and the servant of all.”
Taking a child, he placed it in their midst,
and putting his arms around it, he said to them,
“Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me;
and whoever receives me,
receives not me but the One who sent me.”