Select Month:Year: 
SunMonTueWedThuFri Sat
01020304050607
08091011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031



Homilies Navchetana Apps, the first of its kind is produced and published by Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India

 

Subscribe and receive weekly Homilies

*Name:
*Email:

Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission

Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.

Contact us: navchetana@gmail.com



Comments
*Name:
*Email:
*Comments:
*Type the characters as seen on the image:
Captcha image

 


Homilies :: Latin Rite
Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time Download This Homily

July 1, 2018

Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time B

 

Wisdom 1: 13-15, 2:23-24 ,

2 Cor 8:7, 9, 13-15 ,

 

Gospel MK 5:21-43


When Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a large crowd gathered around him, and he stayed close to the sea. One of the synagogue officials, named Jairus, came forward. Seeing him he fell at his feet and pleaded earnestly with him, saying, "My daughter is at the point of death. Please, come lay your hands on her that she may get well and live."

He went off with him, and a large crowd followed him and pressed upon him.



There was a woman afflicted with hemorrhages for twelve years. She had suffered greatly at the hands of many doctors

and had spent all that she had. Yet she was not helped but only grew worse. She had heard about Jesus and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak. She said, "If I but touch his clothes, I shall be cured." Immediately her flow of blood dried up. She felt in her body that she was healed of her affliction. Jesus, aware at once that power had gone out from him,

turned around in the crowd and asked, "Who has touched my clothes?" But his disciples said to Jesus, "You see how the crowd is pressing upon you, and yet you ask, 'Who touched me?'" And he looked around to see who had done it. The woman, realizing what had happened to her, approached in fear and trembling. She fell down before Jesus and told him the whole truth. He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has saved you. Go in peace and be cured of your affliction."



A Bleeding Woman and a Dead Girl


In today's Gospel passage we have two incidents that bring out the personality of Jesus. We have two miracles, the healing of the woman with hemorrhage and the raising of the daughter of Jairus from death. The first one is a totally unknown and insignificant person of the society, while the other, though equally unknown, is the daughter of a person of great stature in the society – Jairus.

When I read this passage I ask myself a question: Couldn't Jesus heal both of them simply by a word of mouth? Then why did he touch or allow to be touched in such a way that it makes him ritually unclean? In the first incident no one knew that the “touching” really took place except the woman and Jesus. She did not want to be identified in a crowd that she had been a woman in bleeding. She did not want to make Jesus ritually unclean by her touch. At the same time she had the great faith that if she touched at least the tassel of his cloak she would be healed. Of course she got healed and she slipped herself into the crowd. But Jesus announced it and made it public that somebody had touched him and power went out of him. By having made the woman confess that she was the one who touched him, he made it public that he had become ritually unclean by the touch of a bleeding woman. Sometimes we may feel whether there was any need for Jesus to declare it and put the woman to shame. Again at the bed side of the daughter of Jairus, he could just raise her to life just by a word as he did at the coffin of the son of the widow of Nain or Lazarus. Here again he held the girl in his arms and brought her back to life. So there is something more to the passage than just two miracles of Jesus.

Recently I was travelling in a car in Ahmedabad city. The car stopped at the traffic signal. There were many cars of different sizes and variety waiting in line. A poor girl- a ‘street urchin approached each vehicle knocking at the glass and begging for some money. Many in the posh vehicles turned their eyes away. As the girl touched the car and knocked at the window, some showed their displeasure clearly. It was shocking to see the reaction of a few. Some rich ones sitting inside did not like the girl touching the window of the costly car at all. One of them threw a coin at the girl and shouted, ‘take it but dont touch my car and make it dirty!!! In contrast here we have Jesus publicly announcing that he is “touched” by a bleeding woman, thereby putting her to shame and declaring himself ritually unclean. Again at the house of Jairus, he not only touches the dead body of the girl, but holds it in his hands and thereby making himself unclean again.

In every culture a woman in her menstrual cycle is considered ritually unclean. In our Indian society this concept is very strong. Same was the case in Jewish society too. Even in the twenty first century this concept has not undergone any change.

Recently there was a big issue in one of the big companies in Kerala. It was reported in all the dailies and became a point of heated discussion in the news channels. All the women employees of the company were subjected to physical examination after they refused to reveal who left a sanitary napkin in the ladies toilet. The women’s rights groups and the feminist groups were up in arms. Our society has not learned to respect the rights of women. Even some of the women in the panel discussions were not ready to discard their view that “uncleanness was attached to the body in menstrual period. There is nothing “clean” or “unclean in it. It is just a matter of physical status.

My hats off to Jesus who upheld the womens rights for a dignified status in the society. He questions the irrational notions that kept women away from the mainstream of society by imposing restrictions on them and taboos on a merely physical function and reality. Jesus understood that power went out of him and healed the woman. He could just avoid declaring it and making a big noise of it there publicly. At the first instance we may feel that Jesus is putting the woman in embarrassment. But there is larger purpose in Jesus action. It is clear from the dialogue between them after that. I am overwhelmed by the affection and intentional “siding” Jesus does to support women. Here and elsewhere in the Gospels we see that. The social workers today speak a lot about women empowerment. Here is Jesus who really tries to empower them. He publicly declares that there is nothing “impure” in a woman. They are of equal status in the society.

The irrational notions of impurity should be removed from our minds. Indian society is full of taboos and “dos and donts”. Most of them affect the downtrodden of the society and women. It is high time we adopt the attitude of Jesus regarding purity and impurity. Neither a bleeding woman, nor a dead girl makes someone pure or impure. It is the so called ‘dirty beliefs and our attitudes that make us impure. Mahatma Gandhi understood the message of Jesus better than us. He declared, ”Untouchability is a crime against God and humanity.” Rather than looking at this Gospel passage as two miracles of Jesus, let us look at it in this light. Going against social conventions and challenging them he brings about healing and wholeness in the life of two persons of insignificance. This passage challenges us to adopt the attitude of Jesus.


Dr. Martin Mallathu CMI

Homilies Navchetana Apps, the first of its kind is produced and published by Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India to assist the clergy to preach the World of God and also as a handy spiritual resource for the people of God to reflect on the daily spiritual passages at their convenience. You can download this on your Android phone from Google play and you can see the Gospel reflections of the whole year. The size of this app is just 2.5 MB. We welcome your suggestions and contributions to server you better.

May God Bless you

Fr. James M L CMI

Get it on Google Play

Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.


Back To Current Homilies