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Salvation

 

THE POWER OF TOUCH.

 

The obvious focus of our Gospel today is the cure of the woman and the raising of the little girl to life. But these are really only the backdrop to the real action, the real message.

 

Note in our Gospel today the number of times Mark mentions something about touch or touching.

  • The crowd “pressed” around Jesus touching him.
  • The woman believed that his touch would heal her.
  • The woman touched Jesus.
  • Jesus askes twice “who touched me?”
  • The father asked Jesus to come and lay his hands on his daughter-touching her.
  • Jesus took the little girl by the hand….again touching her.

Both the woman and the little girl’s father believed in the power of Jesus touch.

 

Certainly many people touched Jesus with little effect. The crowd pressed around him touching him with little effect as the disciples noted. BUT when the woman touched him….that was different.

 

After the woman touched him, Jesus actually sought her out. “WHO touched me?” he asked. This is one of the few times in Scripture that we hear about Jesus seeking out someone. In most cases people come seeking Jesus. The woman when confronted, comes clean and admits that she was the one who touched him. Jesus’ loving reply: “Go, you are healed.”

 

But there is something else special in this dialogue. Jesus calls her “daughter.” Jesus refers to others as mother, sister, brother, child, disciple…..But here he says: “Daughter your faith has saved you.”

 

  1. was her hope, her faith, her audacity….daring to push through the crowd to touch Jesus that prompted him to respond. But it all started with a touch.

 

The second part of our Gospel recalls a painful human reality that can be one of the most difficult and painful human experiences….the loss of a child. The synagogue official approaching Jesus and pleading with him to come and lay his hand on, touch, his daughter that she may live.

 

Jesus responds to the faith filled and hope filled request and goes with the official to his house. His words to the official when the news comes that the child has died are important for all of us to hear and remember: “Fear is useless, what is needed is faith.”

 

Note that Jesus again uses the power of touch to bring the young girls back to life.

 

The power of touch was important not only in Jesus’ day but it equally important in our day. It is a touch, a hug, an embrace, a handshake that can be so powerful and reassuring….often so much more powerful than words in conveying God’s message of love, comfort and hope.

 

A final thought about our readings today. We all experience times of trial, pain, uncertainty and doubt in our lives. Probably most of us have prayed for God’s intervention or a miracle in our lives and perhaps we did not get the answer we expected or wanted. A thought to consider. If we cling tenaciously to his promises and persevere in our faith, as we reflect on our experience we may find that we may not always get the cure that we want, but we will always get the healing that we need.”

 

Fr. Carroll Mizicko, OFM

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