Friday, June 26, 2015

Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time Year B

Readings: Ws 1:13-15; 2:23-24; 2 Cor 8:7, 9, 13-15; Mk 5:21-43
The readings this Sunday proclaim the good news of how God in Christ is well able to reverse fortunes by transforming suffering and death into wholeness and life. “Transforming people one at a time is at the heart of God’s plan for the world.” This Sunday, we meet two people whose lives are transformed by the presence of Jesus. Jairus is a Jew and a synagogue official in Capernaum. In desperation and concern for his daughter’s life, he approaches Jesus. Similarly, a woman suffering of haemorrhage for twelve years, though afraid, decides to come close to Jesus in order to touch his cloak. These two represent each one of us who just like them struggle with the same issues of sickness, life and death. The gospel passage however proclaims a God will not allow fear, sickness and death to have the last word. It also shows us the compassionate face of God in Jesus who reassures Jairus with those comforting words, "Do not be afraid; only have faith". Through faith, fear in the woman with haemorrhage for twelve years, is transformed into courage. Her sickness is transformed into spiritual and physical health. The death of the little girl raised by Jesus to life, becomes our hope of eternal life in Christ who is risen and is alive. Coping with misfortune is a major preoccupation for many families that face terminal illness of a loved one, death and even poverty due to lack of employment and material resources.

Faith in Jesus and what he can do is what drives Jairus and the woman in the gospel to Jesus. Jairus approaches Jesus directly, kneels before him and asks for the healing of his daughter. The woman only wishes to touch his clothes in order to be healed. In both cases, it is their faith that gives them the boldness and courage to approach Jesus with deep faith that he has the power to heal.  The gospel therefore leads us to discover Jesus, the source and solution to human search for security and wholeness. In his resurrection Christ enables us to overcome suffering, poverty and death. After Jesus raises the daughter of Jairus to life, the crowd is “utterly astounded.” The presence of Jesus transforms the situations of sickness into wholeness and death into life. What message do we take home this Sunday? 1) The gospel passage proclaims the good news of how God in Christ transforms suffering and death into wholeness and life. Therefore sickness and death do not have the last word. 2) This Sunday as disciples and stewards we hear those reassuring words of Jesus to Jairus “Do not be afraid; only have faith.” 3) The readings therefore invite us to trust and hope in Christ, who transforms our fears into great hope and boldness, our sickness into wholeness and death into life.

©2015 John S. Mbinda 

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