From chapter 2 - Serve. Part 7
I H AV E G I V E N Y
O U A N E X
A M P L E ”
Jesus told his
disciples that he had given them a model to follow. He said,“If you know these
things,blessed are you if you do them” (John 13: 17).
traditional tale of the fall of Satan is that it was due to his refusal to
serve: non serviam, “I will not
serve,” was the devil’s reply to God.Inflated by pride,he would not obey.Fallen
ity shares this trait, as Jeremiah the prophet says: “For
long ago you broke your yoke and burst your bonds; and you said, ‘I will not
serve’ ” (Jeremiah 2:20).
In opposition to Satan and fallen
humanity is Jesus Christ. Jesus did not come to be served but to serve. We who
follow him are “in Christ”and we are to imitate him at the liturgy.If we want
to get the most out of the Eucharist we need to start by fostering the attitude
of Christ the Servant.
C O U C H P O TAT O C AT H O L I C
It strikes me that at the heart of every problem we
experience in the Eucharist today is a fundamental stance of someone who will
not serve but wants to be the one served — sort of a couch potato Catholic.
St. Benedict, in his Rule, explains the
proper attitude the follower of Christ is to have at prayer: “If we do not
venture to approach men who are in power, except with humility and reverence,
when we wish to ask a favor, how much must we beseech the Lord God of all
things with all humility and purity of devotion? And let us be assured that it
is not in many words, but in the purity of heart and tears of compunction that
we are heard.”7
If someone very important were coming to
your house, you would want to make sure that the person was at ease, you would
look after his or her comfort, and that person would be the center of your
attention until his or her departure. Likewise, if we truly serve God at our
celebration of the Eucharist, God will be our focus. Our hearts and minds will
be raised to him.
If your role is to preside at the
liturgy, you must serve the liturgy faithfully
as the Church has
handed it down to you. If you are a musician, the music must serve the liturgy,
helping all to raise their voices as one to God. If you function as a lector
you must proclaim the readings with great care so that all may hear the Word
clearly. Every person in the congregation has a role to serve in the Eucharist.
Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their
as the eyes of a maid
to the hand of her mistress,
so our eyes look to
the LORD our God, till he have
mercy upon us.
— P SALM
1 2 3 : 2
Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master,
as the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress,
so our eyes look to the LORD our God, till he have mercy upon us.
— P SALM 1 2 3 : 2