21st Sunday in Ordinary Time Year B (Joshua 24:1-2a. 15-17.18b Ephesians 5:21-32 John 6:60-69)

Theme: Whom shall you serve?

In today’s first reading, Joshua raised a very important question with the Israelites, the same way he is also asking us. Whom shall you, serve? For me and my household we shall serve the Lord. This same question is presented to you and I on this twenty-first Sunday of the year: whom will you and your household serve? The people of Israel decided that they will serve the living God, just like Joshua and his household. The choice we make as we answer the question of Joshua will determine what the future holds for us as a people.

As we choose the option to serve God and live according to his word, he will fight our battles for us and bless all that concerns us. What we have to do as children of God is to live a life that is pleasing to him at all things and his blessings and love will abound in our lives. In the second reading for this Sunday, St. Paul points out the love that should be found in the relationship of husband and wife, just like the relationship that exists between Christ and the church. It is founded in such a way that there is love and respect for each of them. A relationship that is centred on love, selflessness, humility and God. It is an invitation for us to live like true children of God that we are called to be. The husband serves the wife in humility, and the wife serves the husband in humility. When that becomes the case there is peace, there is joy, there is love and there is happiness in such a home. This is the mind of the church for you and I.

In the gospel reading, Peter responds to the question of Jesus, Lord to whom shall we go, you have the message of eternal life. This is an answer of total resignation to the will of God. Can you also confidently repeat the same words that Peter replied Jesus?  The statement of Peter encourages us to embrace the part of Christ, because his message brings us life, his message brings us peace, his message brings us fulfilment, his message brings us joy, unity and peace. We are all encouraged to embrace this wonderful invitation presented to us by Jesus Christ in the gospel, by taking seriously our answer to the question of the prophet Joshua in today’s first reading and also the answer of Peter in the gospel. The message that Jesus presents to us is life giving for all those who imbibe it in their daily lives. As long as we live by it, we can be rest assured that we are making a journey that will lead us to eternal life.

Dearly beloved in Christ, let us resolve today to do all within our power, trusting in God’s grace to embrace holiness of life. May God grant us the grace to live a life that is pleasing to him at all times. Peace be with you.




Homily for the 21st Sunday of the ordinary time of the Year B, by Fr. Jude Ifeanyi Ifezime, C.S.Sp