Which Crown, Which Diadem God Chooses
There is a video by Fr. Fernando Armellini with English subtitles
commenting on today’s Gospel reading:
The first schism in the Church took place under the eyes of Jesus, two disciples against ten and ten against two (Mk 10:35-41). The reason for the dispute is not a theological discussion or denial of dogmas, but the lust for power, competition for the top spots. It was the beginning of a painful history of ecclesial divisions and conflicts, always driven by petty rivalries. When someone wants to dominate the others, the group falls apart. But not even the democratic system eliminates squabbles because it does not cure it at the root. It’s just a balancing act, an attempt to reconcile opposing selfishness.
Jesus appointed the Twelve so that they would be the sign in the world of a new society in which every claim to dominion is abolished and cultivates a single ambition: the service of the poorest. A difficult task! The mentality of this world has infiltrated, since the very beginning, even in the Church and over the centuries the criteria of this world have resurfaced: domination, possession, the enslavement of others. The tiara, the famous hat of the pope, was the symbol of authority and the universal jurisdiction of the bishop of Rome. Its origin is uncertain, but in the thirteenth century it consisted of a single crown, in the following century, two and a few decades later, three overlapping crowns, and symbols of the three kingdoms over which the pope extended his power: the sky, the ground, and underground. Elected Pope, Paul VI made a historic gesture: he put it on his head and immediately took it off, this time for good. The tiara was a too ambiguous, too compromised symbol, which is incompatible with the one glorious diadem that had adorned the head of the Master, the crown of thorns.