Bringing the Spiritually Paralyzed to Christ

I arrived today at the Benedictine Center at St. Paul Monastery (where I am co-facilitating our semi-annual vocation retreat weekend for law students and alum) in time for the 5:00 daily Mass.

Today’s Gospel was St. Mark’s account of Jesus’ healing of a paralyzed man. Jesus is speaking in a crowded room, so crowded it is impossible for the four men carrying their paralyzed friend to get in the door. So determined were they to get their friend to Jesus that they broke through the roof and lowered the mat carrying their friend to Jesus.

It was that act that the priest celebrating Mass focused on in his sermon – the caring determination of the friends of the paralytic.

We can’t heal people directly, but we can participate in their healing by praying for them. But the priest also invited us to think about how else we can help bring those in need to Jesus. How, he asked, might we bring the spiritually paralyzed to Him. He acknowledged that it can be challenging to know what to say to people who are feeling distant from God, and that saying the wrong thing is potentially worse than saying nothing.

Do we have eyes that see those who are paralyzed? And are we open to those opportunities where we might help bring them to Jesus?

Please keep our retreatants in prayer this weekend.


One thought on “Bringing the Spiritually Paralyzed to Christ

  1. Who is most paralyzed, those who religiously attempt to ‘wash’ away every stain from the garment of their life and the lives of others or those who celebrate the ‘stains’ accumulated during life’s brief journey? There is reason Jacob selected the ‘spotted and speckled’ goats and sheep and ‘dark colored’ lambs when he was given permission to cull through Laban’s flock.

    Is it not time to celebrate the true gift of our humanity that combines the blessings of original sin, free will and the grace offered that fills the loving hearts of those whose eyes do see all of God’s children? Are we to be there for others on ‘their’ journey or continually attempt to convince them that our path is the one ordained?

    If it is left to God’s ‘mercy’ to welcome into Heaven all those who have not heard, or will never hear, the name of Jesus, who or what is at work that allows them to love deeply, comfort and embrace those they encounter during their life’s journey?

    Whose heart, other than our own, that needs ‘healing’ are we sure of – and whose hearts are receptive to being loved unconditionally? In his day, were those offered by Jesus to ‘Come’ called by voice or through Love’s expression and affirming example? How are we truly ‘called’?

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