Today is the Feast of St. James. There were two Jameses among the Apostles. They’re referred to as James the Greater and James the Lesser. The only reason is that James the Greater is mentioned first among the list of the Apostles. This is today’s feast. James was the brother of John and son of Zebedee. He was a fisherman.
In today’s Gospel reading from Matthew 20, the mother of James and John approaches Jesus with her two sons and asks that they sit at His right and at His left in the Kingdom. Jesus answers with a question for the two men. “Can you drink the chalice that I am going to drink?” They answered, “We can.”
It’s a question we need to ask ourselves as we set out to follow Jesus. I think what Jesus was trying to say was, “I’m going to take up a cross, suffer horribly and give up my life for others. Can you handle that?” James and John could and did. How about you? Can you drink the chalice Jesus drank?
Father, give us the grace to willingly lay down our lives for others; to drink the chalice that Jesus drank. Amen.