1 And when he returned to Capernaum after some days, it was reported that he was at home. 2 And many were gathered together, so that there was no longer room for them, not even about the door; and he was preaching the word to them. 3 And they came, bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men. 4 And when they could not get near him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him; and when they had made an opening, they let down the pallet on which the paralytic lay. 5 And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, "My son, your sins are forgiven."
6 Now some of the scribes were sitting there, questioning in their hearts, 7 "Why does this man speak thus? It is blasphemy! Who can forgive sins but God alone?" 8 And immediately Jesus, perceiving in his spirit that they thus questioned within themselves, said to them, "Why do you question thus in your hearts? 9 Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, `Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, `Rise, take up your pallet and walk'? 10 But that you may know that the Son of man has authority on earth to forgive sins" -- he said to the paralytic -- 11 "I say to you, rise, take up your pallet and go home." 12 And he rose, and immediately took up the pallet and went out before them all; so that they were all amazed and glorified God, saying, "We never saw anything like this!"
I invite you all to enter in this event and participate in all the movements of the different kinds of people. Observe not only the words and gestures of Jesus, but the way He looks and responds to different kind of people. His firmness and tenderness for our personal imitation.
Let us see the silent presence of the disciples and all that they may be thinking and doing at this moment. Some of the people do take an extreme initiative and other just ignore them.
Let us not ignore to observe how the elites of the society look at Jesus, the healed one, the people who brought him, the people around them and the disciples who surround Jesus.
At the end let us look Jesus once again, particularly the way he looks us and wait for a message. Let us apply this message today and let this day begins and ends as par the desire of the Lord. I wish you all a wonderful day.
«‘My son, your sins are forgiven’ (...). ‘Stand up, take up your mat and go home’»
Fr. Joan Carles MONTSERRAT i Pulido
(Cerdanyola del Vallès, Barcelona, Spain)
Today, we see the Lord surrounded once more by crowds: «so many people gathered that there was no longer room even outside the door» (Mk 2:2). His heart is melted by people's needs and makes him to bestow upon them as much relief as possible; by forgiving, teaching and healing them at the same time. He certainly offers them physical help (as in today's parable, by curing the paralytic), but —actually— He is intent on getting the very best for each one of us: the well-being of our soul.
Jesus, our Savior, wants to give us a true hope of salvation. He even forgives our sins and sympathizes with our moral feebleness. Before anything else, He most emphatically says: «My son, your sins are forgiven» (Mk 2:5). Later on, we are given to see him connecting the remission of our sins —which He generously and tirelessly grants— to a most extraordinary miracle, seen by our very eyes. As some kind of external guarantee, as if to help us to open our eyes to faith, after forgiving the paralytic's sins, He cures him of his paralysis: «Stand up, take up your mat and go home. The man rose and, in the sight of all those people, he took up his mat and went out» (Mk 2:11-12).
We can revive this miracle quite often through Confession. With the words of forgiveness said by the minister of God («I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit») Jesus —discreetly— accords us once more the external guarantee of remission of our sins, guarantee that is tantamount to the spectacular cure of the paralytic of Capernaum.
We are now beginning a new ordinary time. And, we believers are now reminded of the urgent need we have of a sincere and personal encounter with Jesus Christ, the All-Merciful Lord. In this liturgical time, He urges us not to slacken our pace nor to neglect the necessary forgiveness He offers all of us in his dwelling, the Church.