Saint Agatha (martyred, c. 3rd century)
Readings of the day: RB 7:55Mass: 1 Kings 8:1-7, 9-13; Resp. Psalm 132; Mark 6:53-56
To stir the imagination, I looked at three different translations of today’s Gospel. I was most interested in one verse (Mk 6:55
). After the people recognized Jesus, they ‘scurried about the surrounding country…’ (NAB); ‘ran about the whole neighborhood…’ (RSV); ‘rushed about the whole region…’ (NRSV). Put another way, the people made haste. Wherever Jesus went, the people went. They brought with them the sick on mats or pallets. They begged or besought Him that they might touch even the fringe on his garment or the tassel on his cloak. As many as touched it were healed or made well. R. Guardini has this to say:From all sides human suffering streams to [Jesus]; on foot, on the shoulders of the sturdy, on stretchers. And Jesus walks the flood of pain, and the power of God flows from him in a wave of healing, and the words of the prophet are fulfilled: ‘Surely he hath borne our infirmities and carried our sorrow’ (Is 53:4). The Spirit within him has the power to heal—to heal from the root of the evil. He recreates original life new and unspoiled. Jesus’ salutary powers are inexhaustible—more than adequate for all the misery. He does not recoil from the wounds, the distorted limbs and faces that gather at this door. He holds his stand. He does not select, does not choose this malady as particularly urgent, that sufferer’s faith as particularly promising; he receives them all, simply, accepting each burden as it comes. His ‘Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened’ is practiced before it is preached (Mt 11:28).(The Lord, p. 55)SEEK THE LORD.HE WILL BE FOUND.