Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Tuesday word, 20 Mar 2007

4 Lenten Tuesday (20 Mar 2007) Ez 47. 1-9,12; Ps 46; Jn 5. 1-16
Homily of Fr. Paul Panaretos, S.J.

Today’s gospel selection makes clear that Jesus was more powerful than the waters of the pool called in Hebrew Bethesda. Like others healed by Jesus this man became an apostle, announcing to the leaders of the Jews what Jesus had done; they began to persecute Jesus because he [healed the man] on a sabbath.

What did the man do after that? Did he continue to exercise his newfound agility? Did he continue to walk on the way of the One who healed him?

Wondering this way isn't idle. It leads us to wonder about ourselves. The questions any of us pose about the man after he was healed by Jesus are autobiographical ones. Lent and its disciplines welcome us to consider Jesus’ goodness to us and how we respond to his goodness with our ways of living day to day. Are we more agile in living faith, hope and love?

Giving ourselves to Lent and especially to the Lenten discipline each of us chose for ourselves makes us more alert to Jesus inviting us; more agile Christians; and more ready to extend Christ’s faith, hope and love to others.

Lenten practices are like the constantly growing stream of Ezekiel’s vision. That stream flowed to the sea with marvelous effect: the stream made the salt waters fresh. Lent observed has the effect of that stream. It refreshes us in our Messiah, and refreshed by Jesus we have a greater effect on our world--one person, one place and one event at a time.
Wikimedia photo by Antoni Sureda used under the GNU Free Documentation License.

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