Homily of the Apostolic Nuncio Chapel of the Apostolic Nunciature New Delhi, 22 May 2018
Gospel: Mark 9:30-37
Today’s Gospel narrates the second announcement of the Passion, death and Resurrection of Jesus. Like the first announcement, the disciples were terrified and afraid. They do not understand the words about the cross because they are not capable of understanding or accepting a Messiah who becomes the servant of the brothers. They continue to dream of a glorious Messiah. 
When Jesus announces His Passion and Death, they discuss who among them will be the greatest. Jesus wants to serve, yet they only think of commanding! In the time of Jesus as well as in that of Mark, there was the “yeast” of a dominating ideology. At the time of Mark, the communities were not always capable of maintaining a critical attitude regarding the assimilation of the ideology of power of the Roman Empire. 
When they got home, Jesus asked: “What were you arguing about on the road?” They did not answer. It is the silence of the one who feels guilty. Jesus is a good pedagogue. He does not intervene immediately. He knows how to wait for the opportune moment to fight against the influence of the ideology in those whom He is forming.
The competitive mentality and prestige, which characterized the society of the Roman Empire, was already penetrating into the small community which was just being formed! The response of Jesus is a summary of the witness of life which He Himself was giving from the beginning: If anyone wants to be first, he must make himself last of all and servant of all!