Homeless People
Homeless Pictures
Homeless People
Define Homeless
Homeless Statistics
Homeless News
Services Directory
Homeless Children
Rebeccas Community
Hospitality House
Street Outreach
School Retreats
Rebeccas Community

HomelessHomeless ForumsOur StoryContact Rebeccas Community
Homeless people share their life stories: Rebecca, Andrew, Elle, Melissa and sk8r rat.

Youth Ministry Resources - 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Year A: Matthew 16:21-27 - Take up your cross and follow me - 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Last week we heard Peter's resounding belief that Jesus is the Christ and now when Jesus predicts his coming passion, death and resurrection Peter is appalled and takes Jesus aside to tell him that this whole idea of passion and death must be stopped. This is not the kind of Messiah Peter is ready for and so he insists that there must be a better way.

Jesus pushes Peter's protest aside and rebukes Peter in the same way that he rebuked the storm. Jesus insists that Peter is valuing human things rather than divine things and this is the essence of their disagreement. Jesus explains that he will achieve salvation, not by conquering Israel, but by conquering death. As this is beyond human reasoning, it is understandable that Peter was asking for another way.

How can Jesus conquer death? There had been sufficient death for Peter to see the finality of death and yet Jesus is insistent that after he suffers and dies, he will rise again and so conquer death. Jesus will die in Jerusalem because this is the city where the prophets die and where his resurrection will have the greatest impact on the religious and political leaders.

Peter now realises that there is no escape from carrying your own cross if you are in relationship with Jesus. Following Jesus means self-denial and generous self-giving service. Happiness eludes those who seek it directly rather than seeking first the will of God.

Being a Christian does not mean living a life of misery because Jesus has said the he has come so that we might have life and have it to the full. However, being a Christian does present us with a number of choices - will we choose what suits us and so make selfish decisions or will we prayerfully discern God's will?

Jesus states that God will reward each one according to their behaviour - again a clear direction for all disciples. Do we choose God or do we choose ourselves? Do we choose more possessions or do we share what we have with others? Do we value our family and friends and so put those relationships above our own desires? Do we go in peace to love and serve the world or do we leave church ideals in church and forget about living the gospel each day? These are some of the questions and challenges that arise from this Gospel.

Cate Mapstone

Year C: Luke 14:1. 7-14 - Places of honour - 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Luke has his community in mind as he writes this passage with Jesus teaching about the places of honour. In 1st C Mediterranean culture where you sat at symposia was determined by your level of importance.

The most important guest sat next to the host and so each table at a wedding would then have the most important people sitting together. Luke's community lived in this culture of places of honour so when they gathered for the memorial meal (Eucharist) they followed the cultural by placing the more important members of the community closest to the Eucharistic table.

Jesus is teaching that the Christian community is a community of equals - "there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus" Gal 3:28.

This message of equality is a difficult learning for many people, especially those who are used to occupying the seats of honour. There are no reserved seats in the Christian community. A homeless person is as welcome as the pastoral leader because through their Baptism they have become "one in Christ Jesus."

While 'honour and shame' are 1st century values we still relate to them today. None of us seek public embarrassment or shame and can relate to the humiliation of rejection. Once again Jesus is asking us to think about the choices we make in life.

Who are the people we honour and who are the people who are invisible in our society? Who do we value and why? Do we seek out the powerful and influential and somehow hope to bask in their reflection? Or do we see the humanity in another person before we notice their position in society.

Those of us who are influential in society are asked not to get caught up in our own importance. If we are honoured in some way we can be thankful but never myopic. Those of us who are the poor and lowly in society are also asked the same question. Do we value those around us regardless of their position? If so, how do we live that out?

Cate Mapstone

Youth Ministry Resources 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time
Click the Pope for more Youth Ministry Resources.

Youth Ministry Resources 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time