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Mark 1:40-45

The Word of God

A leper came to Jesus and, kneeling, he begged him, "If you choose, you can make me clean." Moved with pity, Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, and said to him, "I do choose. Be made clean!" Immediately the leprosy left him, and he was made clean. After sternly warning him he sent him away at once, saying to him, "See that you say nothing to anyone; but go, show yourself to the priest, and offer for your cleansing what Moses commanded, as a testimony to them." But he went out and began to proclaim it freely, and to spread the word, so that Jesus could no longer go into a town openly, but stayed out in the country; and people came to him from every quarter.

Mark 1:40-45
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

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    • Because Jesus had touched a leper he became ‘unclean’, and could not go openly to a town. Who we mix with says a lot about us. When we look at who were Jesus companions we find many who were outcast or looked down on. People suffering from leprosy were one group, as were tax collectors and any sort of sinner. We follow his example by opening our minds to think and act with openness and compassion towards all those we meet.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

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    • ‘Moved with pity’. One again divine compassion overrules ritual laws as Jesus touched the leper. Perhaps no one had touched the poor man for years. I meet him afterwards and invite him to share what his experience was like. Note that this anonymous man has risked taking seriously the promise that the Good News is truly for everyone. This is why people are coming to him ‘from every quarter’.
    • Then I take his place and ask Jesus for what I want to be cured of; I watch his face soften with compassion. He is not put off by the nature of my need. As I gaze into his eyes I see that for Jesus I am important and that he wishes only the fullness of life for me. I allow him to touch or even to embrace me as the father embraced his prodigal son. I sense his acceptance of me just as I am, and that deep down, at the level of your relationship with him, I am made whole.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

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    • Leprosy is a loathsome, disfiguring disease. Victims were ritually unclean and completely segregated from the community, never to be touched, feeling rejected even by God. I hear the highly emotional plea of the leper, his faith, hope and desperation. Jesus feels intensely for him and responds with pity and compassion. I shudder as Jesus reaches out to touch him, but then I share the man’s delight at his transformation. Jesus is frustrated that he cannot stop him telling everybody.
    • “We touch the flesh of Christ in those who are outcast, hungry, thirsty, naked, imprisoned, ill, unemployed, persecuted, in search of refuge” – Pope Francis.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

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    • Leprosy is a loathsome and disfiguring disease. Victims were ritually unclean and completely segregated from the community, rejected not only by society but feeling rejected and despised by God, never to be touched.
    • There is a highly emotional tone to the pleading of the leper, faith, hope and desperation. Jesus feels intensely for him and responds with pity and compassion, yet mixed with anger at the negative environment of rejection, disease, death, sin and evil. I shudder as Jesus reaches out to touch him. I share the man’s delight at his transformation. We cannot but feel sorry for Jesus’ attempt to stop him from telling everybody. No hope of that!
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

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    • In several passages of Mark's Gospel, Jesus warns people not to talk about him as the Messiah; he did not want to be stereotyped as the military hero saving Israel from the Romans. He was shy of acquiring what is now called an image, a public mask that does no justice to the truth underneath. Jean Vanier said: /When you become important, it is easy to fall from a true prophet into a false one./
    • Lord, save me from worrying about my image. I am better without one. Let people know me from what I do and how I behave, not from slogans or advertisements. What matters is how you know me, looking into my heart with the eye of a lover.
    • Jesus takes on the limitations of a leprosy sufferer. Having cured the man, he then would be suspected of being contaminated, so he himself could no longer go into the town, but must stay outside like the person suffering from leprosy. This is another time that Jesus fully inserts himself into the flaws of the people and their culture. In the incarnation he really becomes one of us, is 'made flesh'. He knows and feels for us from the inside, and particularly knows now what it's like to be the outsider, the one nobody wants, the one others look down on. Who are outsiders in my small world? In prayer can I let them come to mind and feel with them what it must be like to be treated as scum, poor, different? Maybe my prayer will soften my attitudes to those rejected by society?
    • To touch a leper was unthinkable at the time of Jesus. A physical danger of contagion had become a religious taboo. Again Jesus cuts through religious taboo and harsh judgments on people with his own loving healing. What can be more personal than touch? Surely the leper was cleansed from more than physical illness by this touch - he was assured of personal human dignity.
    • Leprosy in the New Testament could mean any type of skin disease, not necessarily Hansen's disease. Having cured someone, Jesus declares 'see that you say nothing to anyone.' He does not want people to think that he has come to bring about political change. Jesus is not a revolutionary in that sense.
    • There are many aspects of my life that need to be 'made clean.' I bring these to Jesus for healing.
    • Jesus affirms the desire of the man with leprosy: his 'Certainly I want to,' is his response to our desire for what is truly for our growth and wellbeing.
    • The leper knew his need and trusted that Jesus could help him. I pray with the same attitude, not hiding my neediness, not hesitant about bringing it before Jesus, listening for Jesus’ encouraging response.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

    Active
    Default
    • In several passages of Mark's Gospel, Jesus warns people not to talk about him as the Messiah; he did not want to be stereotyped as the military hero saving Israel from the Romans. He was shy of acquiring what is now called an image, a public mask that does no justice to the truth underneath. Jean Vanier said: /When you become important, it is easy to fall from a true prophet into a false one./
    • Lord, save me from worrying about my image. I am better without one. Let people know me from what I do and how I behave, not from slogans or advertisements. What matters is how you know me, looking into my heart with the eye of a lover.
    • Jesus takes on the limitations of a leprosy sufferer. Having cured the man, he then would be suspected of being contaminated, so he himself could no longer go into the town, but must stay outside like the person suffering from leprosy. This is another time that Jesus fully inserts himself into the flaws of the people and their culture. In the incarnation he really becomes one of us, is 'made flesh'. He knows and feels for us from the inside, and particularly knows now what it's like to be the outsider, the one nobody wants, the one others look down on. Who are outsiders in my small world? In prayer can I let them come to mind and feel with them what it must be like to be treated as scum, poor, different? Maybe my prayer will soften my attitudes to those rejected by society?
    • To touch a leper was unthinkable at the time of Jesus. A physical danger of contagion had become a religious taboo. Again Jesus cuts through religious taboo and harsh judgments on people with his own loving healing. What can be more personal than touch? Surely the leper was cleansed from more than physical illness by this touch - he was assured of personal human dignity.
    • Leprosy in the New Testament could mean any type of skin disease, not necessarily Hansen's disease. Having cured someone, Jesus declares 'see that you say nothing to anyone.' He does not want people to think that he has come to bring about political change. Jesus is not a revolutionary in that sense.
    • There are many aspects of my life that need to be 'made clean.' I bring these to Jesus for healing.
    • Jesus affirms the desire of the man with leprosy: his 'Certainly I want to,' is his response to our desire for what is truly for our growth and wellbeing.
    • The leper knew his need and trusted that Jesus could help him. I pray with the same attitude, not hiding my neediness, not hesitant about bringing it before Jesus, listening for Jesus’ encouraging response.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

    Active
    Default
    • In several passages of Mark's Gospel, Jesus warns people not to talk about him as the Messiah; he did not want to be stereotyped as the military hero saving Israel from the Romans. He was shy of acquiring what is now called an image, a public mask that does no justice to the truth underneath. Jean Vanier said: /When you become important, it is easy to fall from a true prophet into a false one./
    • Lord, save me from worrying about my image. I am better without one. Let people know me from what I do and how I behave, not from slogans or advertisements. What matters is how you know me, looking into my heart with the eye of a lover.
    • Jesus takes on the limitations of a leprosy sufferer. Having cured the man, he then would be suspected of being contaminated, so he himself could no longer go into the town, but must stay outside like the person suffering from leprosy. This is another time that Jesus fully inserts himself into the flaws of the people and their culture. In the incarnation he really becomes one of us, is 'made flesh'. He knows and feels for us from the inside, and particularly knows now what it's like to be the outsider, the one nobody wants, the one others look down on. Who are outsiders in my small world? In prayer can I let them come to mind and feel with them what it must be like to be treated as scum, poor, different? Maybe my prayer will soften my attitudes to those rejected by society?
    • To touch a leper was unthinkable at the time of Jesus. A physical danger of contagion had become a religious taboo. Again Jesus cuts through religious taboo and harsh judgments on people with his own loving healing. What can be more personal than touch? Surely the leper was cleansed from more than physical illness by this touch - he was assured of personal human dignity.
    • Leprosy in the New Testament could mean any type of skin disease, not necessarily Hansen's disease. Having cured someone, Jesus declares 'see that you say nothing to anyone.' He does not want people to think that he has come to bring about political change. Jesus is not a revolutionary in that sense.
    • There are many aspects of my life that need to be 'made clean.' I bring these to Jesus for healing.
    • Jesus affirms the desire of the man with leprosy: his 'Certainly I want to,' is his response to our desire for what is truly for our growth and wellbeing.
    • The leper knew his need and trusted that Jesus could help him. I pray with the same attitude, not hiding my neediness, not hesitant about bringing it before Jesus, listening for Jesus’ encouraging response.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

    Active
    Default
    • In several passages of Mark's Gospel, Jesus warns people not to talk about him as the Messiah; he did not want to be stereotyped as the military hero saving Israel from the Romans. He was shy of acquiring what is now called an image, a public mask that does no justice to the truth underneath. Jean Vanier said: /When you become important, it is easy to fall from a true prophet into a false one./
    • Lord, save me from worrying about my image. I am better without one. Let people know me from what I do and how I behave, not from slogans or advertisements. What matters is how you know me, looking into my heart with the eye of a lover.
    • Jesus takes on the limitations of a leprosy sufferer. Having cured the man, he then would be suspected of being contaminated, so he himself could no longer go into the town, but must stay outside like the person suffering from leprosy. This is another time that Jesus fully inserts himself into the flaws of the people and their culture. In the incarnation he really becomes one of us, is 'made flesh'. He knows and feels for us from the inside, and particularly knows now what it's like to be the outsider, the one nobody wants, the one others look down on. Who are outsiders in my small world? In prayer can I let them come to mind and feel with them what it must be like to be treated as scum, poor, different? Maybe my prayer will soften my attitudes to those rejected by society?
    • To touch a leper was unthinkable at the time of Jesus. A physical danger of contagion had become a religious taboo. Again Jesus cuts through religious taboo and harsh judgments on people with his own loving healing. What can be more personal than touch? Surely the leper was cleansed from more than physical illness by this touch - he was assured of personal human dignity.
    • Leprosy in the New Testament could mean any type of skin disease, not necessarily Hansen's disease. Having cured someone, Jesus declares 'see that you say nothing to anyone.' He does not want people to think that he has come to bring about political change. Jesus is not a revolutionary in that sense.
    • There are many aspects of my life that need to be 'made clean.' I bring these to Jesus for healing.
    • Jesus affirms the desire of the man with leprosy: his 'Certainly I want to,' is his response to our desire for what is truly for our growth and wellbeing.
    • The leper knew his need and trusted that Jesus could help him. I pray with the same attitude, not hiding my neediness, not hesitant about bringing it before Jesus, listening for Jesus’ encouraging response.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

    Active
    Default
    • In several passages of Mark's Gospel, Jesus warns people not to talk about him as the Messiah; he did not want to be stereotyped as the military hero saving Israel from the Romans. He was shy of acquiring what is now called an image, a public mask that does no justice to the truth underneath. Jean Vanier said: /When you become important, it is easy to fall from a true prophet into a false one./
    • Lord, save me from worrying about my image. I am better without one. Let people know me from what I do and how I behave, not from slogans or advertisements. What matters is how you know me, looking into my heart with the eye of a lover.
    • Jesus takes on the limitations of a leprosy sufferer. Having cured the man, he then would be suspected of being contaminated, so he himself could no longer go into the town, but must stay outside like the person suffering from leprosy. This is another time that Jesus fully inserts himself into the flaws of the people and their culture. In the incarnation he really becomes one of us, is 'made flesh'. He knows and feels for us from the inside, and particularly knows now what it's like to be the outsider, the one nobody wants, the one others look down on. Who are outsiders in my small world? In prayer can I let them come to mind and feel with them what it must be like to be treated as scum, poor, different? Maybe my prayer will soften my attitudes to those rejected by society?
    • To touch a leper was unthinkable at the time of Jesus. A physical danger of contagion had become a religious taboo. Again Jesus cuts through religious taboo and harsh judgments on people with his own loving healing. What can be more personal than touch? Surely the leper was cleansed from more than physical illness by this touch - he was assured of personal human dignity.
    • Leprosy in the New Testament could mean any type of skin disease, not necessarily Hansen's disease. Having cured someone, Jesus declares 'see that you say nothing to anyone.' He does not want people to think that he has come to bring about political change. Jesus is not a revolutionary in that sense.
    • There are many aspects of my life that need to be 'made clean.' I bring these to Jesus for healing.
    • Jesus affirms the desire of the man with leprosy: his 'Certainly I want to,' is his response to our desire for what is truly for our growth and wellbeing.
    • The leper knew his need and trusted that Jesus could help him. I pray with the same attitude, not hiding my neediness, not hesitant about bringing it before Jesus, listening for Jesus’ encouraging response.
  • Some thoughts on today's scripture

    Active
    Default
    • In several passages of Mark's Gospel, Jesus warns people not to talk about him as the Messiah; he did not want to be stereotyped as the military hero saving Israel from the Romans. He was shy of acquiring what is now called an image, a public mask that does no justice to the truth underneath. Jean Vanier said: /When you become important, it is easy to fall from a true prophet into a false one./
    • Lord, save me from worrying about my image. I am better without one. Let people know me from what I do and how I behave, not from slogans or advertisements. What matters is how you know me, looking into my heart with the eye of a lover.
    • Jesus takes on the limitations of a leprosy sufferer. Having cured the man, he then would be suspected of being contaminated, so he himself could no longer go into the town, but must stay outside like the person suffering from leprosy. This is another time that Jesus fully inserts himself into the flaws of the people and their culture. In the incarnation he really becomes one of us, is 'made flesh'. He knows and feels for us from the inside, and particularly knows now what it's like to be the outsider, the one nobody wants, the one others look down on. Who are outsiders in my small world? In prayer can I let them come to mind and feel with them what it must be like to be treated as scum, poor, different? Maybe my prayer will soften my attitudes to those rejected by society?
    • To touch a leper was unthinkable at the time of Jesus. A physical danger of contagion had become a religious taboo. Again Jesus cuts through religious taboo and harsh judgments on people with his own loving healing. What can be more personal than touch? Surely the leper was cleansed from more than physical illness by this touch - he was assured of personal human dignity.
    • Leprosy in the New Testament could mean any type of skin disease, not necessarily Hansen's disease. Having cured someone, Jesus declares 'see that you say nothing to anyone.' He does not want people to think that he has come to bring about political change. Jesus is not a revolutionary in that sense.
    • There are many aspects of my life that need to be 'made clean.' I bring these to Jesus for healing.
    • Jesus affirms the desire of the man with leprosy: his 'Certainly I want to,' is his response to our desire for what is truly for our growth and wellbeing.
    • The leper knew his need and trusted that Jesus could help him. I pray with the same attitude, not hiding my neediness, not hesitant about bringing it before Jesus, listening for Jesus’ encouraging response.