Fifth Sunday In Ordinary Time – Year B
Fr. Mark Gatto
Preached: Feb 4, 2018
Have you ever been broken hearted? A time in your life when you were really broken, discouraged, wondering about this life? Perhaps a sickness, a loss of a job or career, the death of a loved one, a divorce or broken relationship. Some time when all that seemed important to you came crashing down. Then perhaps you can relate to Job in our First Reading. He is a man who is brokenhearted. He speaks of “months of emptiness”, “nights of misery”, “night is long, and I am full of tossing until dawn”, “my life is a breath”. This is a man who is really struggling.
The Beginning of Mark’s Gospel shows us Jesus as one who heals. Simon Peter’s mother-in-law is sick in bed with a fever. Jesus goes in, took her by the hand and lifted her up. Then many were coming, sick with various diseases and demons. Brokenhearted humanity was coming looking for healing. Jesus is seen as one who brings healing.
When we read the Gospels, it can be easy for us to look and see how wonderful Jesus was. A great healer back then. It takes away any responsibility from us. We look for Jesus to do something or someone special other than me. But, when we see something in Jesus, we the Church are called to do the same. Do not say, Jesus did great things back then as though it is something in the past. If Jesus was one that the brokenhearted went to in order to experience healing, then we know that they were also going to the early church to experience healing. It means that today we are to be instruments of healing in our world.
Do not look around for some other person with special healing powers. You are to be one who brings healing. As Jesus was a healer, so the Church is to be a healer, and not just some special person or the priest, all of you.
Where are you to bring healing? In your own home, your family. Where you work or study. In the community. Anywhere that we find people who are brokenhearted.
Our world has many places where healing is needed, many demons that need to be cast out.
Social Media – often we see hatred, bigotry, division expressed here. How do you use social media? In a way that heals or hurts?
Demons of prejudice, violence, division are seen in politics, between races, with indigenous peoples here in Canada, in the Me Too movement. We have to cast out these demons.
Often our words can be so destructive, so divisive, so harmful. Are the words you use, words that heal or words that hurt?
Like Jesus, let us take the people who are brokenhearted by the hand and lift them up. Let us be people who bring healing to those who are hurting, let us be people who cast out demons of hatred, division, injustice.
At the end of the Mass today, you will be sent out. Go out as a church of healing.
Question for reflection as we go out: Am I bringing healing or hurt? By my words and actions with all people, all situations, am I healing or hurting?