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Treasure in Earthen Vessels

July 25, Monday, Feast of Saint James, Apostle
Daily readings; 1 Corinthians 4:7-15; Matthew 20:20-28

We must persevere in the goal of following Christ—one day and one step at a time

Saint James (the Elder/the Great), an apostle of our Lord, was part of the three-member inner circle, which was close to Jesus during the Transfiguration, the resuscitation of Jairus’ daughter, and prayer at Gethsemane.

As the head of the Church in Jerusalem, he convened the Jerusalem Council (cf. Acts 15) to address the issue of circumcision to the Gentiles. Together with John (in Matthew, through his mother), they request Jesus to be allowed to sit at his right and left.

In the first reading, Saint Paul writes about his trials and tribulations in the Corinthian church. The treasure in the earthen pot makes it valuable, even though it was used to collect people's saliva and waste.

In the gospel reading, Jesus, responding to the request of Zebedee’s wife, asserts that the path to glory and exaltation is the path of suffering and service.

Saint James followed the Lord till the end. He knew what he wanted to have. He asked Jesus, through his mother, what he wanted. And he was ready to pray for the same prize. James walked one step at a time towards his goal of martyrdom.

How do we, amidst our human vulnerabilities, ambiguities, and uncertainties, carry the treasure of God within us?

We must realize this and live up to our call.


Radio Veritas Asia (RVA), a media platform of the Catholic Church, aims to share Christ. RVA started in 1969 as a continental Catholic radio station to serve Asian countries in their respective local language, thus earning the tag “the Voice of Asian Christianity.”  Responding to the emerging context, RVA embraced media platforms to connect with the global Asian audience via its 21 language websites and various social media platforms.