“Looking around at them all, he then said to him ‘Stretch out your hand.’ He did so, and his hand was restored. But they became enraged and discussed together what they might do to Jesus.” (LK 6: 10-11)
The Church Fathers interpreted the cured right hand as a sign of God, forgiving the first gesture of humans’ opposition to Him when Eve and Adam took an apple with his right hand. Now God is curing and forgiving our disobedience and helping us to start a new life based on love and respect.
“My sheep hear my voice, says the Lord; I know them, and they follow me.” (Gospel Acclamation)
“And immediately the man’s ears were opened, his speech impediment was removed, and he spoke plainly.” (MK 7: 35)
Our “speech impediment” is connected with our ability to listen. When we open our ears to listen to others, accept what we heard, we can speak plainly. This is why somebody says: we have two ears to listen and only one mouth to speak.
“Jesus proclaimed the Gospel of the kingdom and cured every disease among the people.” (Gospel Acclamation)
“Some Pharisees said, ‘Why are you doing what is unlawful on the sabbath?’” (LK 6: 2)
We, human beings, like to protect and to know that everything goes properly and justly. We can even protect God when somebody doesn’t do or, worst—do something wrong: “unlawful on the sabbath.” When we focus on controlling and seeing what’s wrong with others, we miss the beauty of life when we can love and see how much love is around us.
“I am the way and the truth and the life, says the Lord; no one comes to the Father except through me.” (Gospel Acclamation)
“The disciples of John the Baptist fast often and offer prayers, and the disciples of the Pharisees do the same, but yours eat and drink.” (LK 5: 33)
Sometimes we think that fasting is a goal, but it is only a means to an end. Fasting, giving alms, and prayer are helping us to be in a better relationship with Our Lord as a means to an end. But more important is to love, respect, and be gentle, a free, creative, and joyful gift of self. We can be so proud of ourselves, how we are good in fasting and offering prayers, and the same moment in danger, because our ego grows, not our love.
“I am the light of the world, says the Lord; whoever follows me will have the light of life.” (Gospel Acclamation)
“‘Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.’ When they brought their boats to the shore, they left everything and followed him.” (LK 5: 10-11)
“Left everything” sounds negative when we focus on the past; when we think about the future: where we are going, what we can achieve, leaving everything sounds like necessary to grow and to start a new life.
“Come after me, says the Lord, and I will make you fishers of men.” (Gospel Acclamation)
“To the other towns also I must proclaim the good news of the Kingdom of God because for this purpose I have been sent.” (LK 4: 43)
More and more cities and towns are inviting us to bring Programs to them. Instead of having Programs in our favorite places, where we know everything, we are invited to follow Our Lord and “proclaim the good news” for couples “to the other towns.” We are so grateful to our Teams that our Programs are going to so many places.
“The Lord sent me to bring glad tidings to the poor and to proclaim liberty to captives.” (Gospel Acclamation)