YEAR A: HOMILY FOR TUESDAY OF THE 4TH WEEK OF LENT
HOMILY THEME: CURE ON A SABBATH….”Jesus saw him, and since he knew how long this man had been lying there, He said to him, ‘Do you want to be healed?”
BY: Fr. Àngel CALDAS i Bosch
HOMILY: Today, Saint John speaks of the parable of the pool of Bethzatha. It rather looked like the waiting room of a traumathology hospital. «There lay a multitude of sick people-blind, lame and paralyzed» (Jn 5:3). Jesus went up there. It’s rather curious!: Jesus manages to be found always in the middle of some problem. Wherever He goes, there is always somebody to be “liberated”; there He is when it comes to making people happy. The Pharisees, instead, were concerned only over the fact that it was Saturday. Their bad faith was killing their spirit. Sin’s nasty features were showing through their eyes. There’s no worse deaf man than he who does not want to hear.
The protagonist of the miracle had been disabled for thirty eight long years. «Do you want to be healed?» (Jn 5:6), Jesus says to him. He had since long ago been struggling in the void for he had not found Jesus. At long last, he had found the Man. The five galleries of the pool of Bethzatha boomed out upon hearing the Master’s voice: «Stand up, take your mat and walk» (Jn 5:8). It was just a matter of an instant.
Jesus Christ’s voice is the voice of God. Everything was anew with that old disabled man, spent by dejection. Much later, Saint John Crisostom will say that in Bethzatha pool sick people cured their bodies, while in the Baptism those same sick cure their soul; over there, one only sick could eventually be cured, every now and then. Baptism, however, cures always and everybody. In both cases God’s power is evidenced through water.
That helpless disabled man, close to the water, does not remind you of our own helplessness to do good? How can we dare solving by ourselves that which has a supernatural scope? Don’t you see, every day, around you, a big crowd of disabled ones that are “moving” themselves a lot, while being totally unable to get rid of their lack of freedom? Sin paralyzes man, grows him old, kills him… We have to fix our eyes in Jesus. We need him —his Grace— to plunge us into the waters of prayer, of confession, of the opening of our spirit. You and I may be eternal disabled persons, or, on the contrary, bearers of his light instruments.
Fr. Àngel CALDAS i Bosch (Salt, Girona, Spain)