Greetings as we begin another beautiful week here at St. Ambrose. We are happy to have you all with us as we celebrate the Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time.
Jesus, in today’s gospel, cures a leper by the healing touch of his hand. A leper was completely out casted from society, and still today there are many people in our own society who are completely alienated and stigmatized. Jesus is moved with pity for this man. What moves you with pity? Who do you pity? What alienates you from others? Who is alienated in our communities? Who is it that we need to reach out to? Jesus’ ‘pity’ also conveys anger at the leper’s situation. Jesus sends the man to the priests, as a testimony to them. It is the religious of Jesus’ time who have alienated this man. What they are incapable of doing, Jesus has done by ‘stretching out his hand’ in love.
Jesus, in Mark’s Gospel, is forever asking people to keep quiet and not tell anyone about what he does. Yet after such a radical encounter with God which frees this man from all that keeps him trapped, of course he would be shouting from the roof tops. Why would Jesus want his miracles to be kept a secret? Jesus wants to be able to fulfill his mission without attracting the wrong kind of attention. Eventually those who are against him will compile evidence but, for now, the less they know the better. We might think today of those who bravely speak out, even if it means they are punished in some way. May all of us have the courage, like the man who is healed in the gospel today, to proclaim the truth, even if it costs us.
Have a great week and enjoy the many gifts that God has given to each of us. Pray for each other—and please say a prayer for me. Happy Valentine’s Day!
May God bless you always.
Fr. Bryan Dalton, Pastor