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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Fourth Sunday,Lent,A,March.10.02.Jn.9:1-41

When Pope Paul V1 landed in Bombay, to participate in the First International Eucharistic Congress in India , he addressed the people with the following words from the Indian Scriptures: “Lord, lead me from falsehood to Truth, from darkness to Light, from death to Immortality.” Struggling with religious doubts and anxieties, Cardinal Newman, composed the following prayer: “Lead kindly Light, amid the encircling gloom, Lead Thou me on. The night is dark, and I am far from home, lead Thou me on.”

Light is the most perennial symbol of wisdom, of awareness, of spirituality, of God himself. It is this symbol of Light that Jesus uses in today’s Gospel to move his listeners from the world of their spiritual blindness to the light of Eternal Love through the vision given to the blind man.

The whole miracle of the sight being given to the blind man is an unbelievably gripping story of an illiterate person teaching the wise men of the society the first lessons in logic. The Pharisees could not accept the fact that the man born blind could get his sight back. Instead of rejoicing in this great blessing, they tried to persuade him to say that the One who gave him sight was a charlatan, a violator of the law, and a man “not of God.” Even the blind man tried to teach them a few lessons in logic: “ We know God does not listen to sinners. If this man were not from God, he would not be able to do anything.”

Instead of rejoicing at the great miracle of healing done for a man born blind from his birth, they strained every nerve to accuse Jesus of employing some kind of magic. The vision of the blind man reached its full restoration when he confessed: “I do believe.” The movement of the man from the darkness of the blindness to the dazzling spectacle of faith should make us reflect on the nature and depth of our faith: how our faith is a transforming force in our lives. .

The blind man had gone to the pool of Siloam= “the one who is sent”. It was his baptism-of immersion -in the Grace of God. It opened the eyes of his mind and he confessed his faith in the Lord. We too made a confession at our baptism and that has to be renewed again and again in our lives: I do believe”.Whatever may the nature of our experiences that we encounter in our lives,we have to see them throughthe vision of our faith.That is what Samuel did .It was not through this physical vision and understanding that he chose David, but through his listening to the voice of God—through God’s eyes—through his faith.It is that spiritual vision that is required from each one of us as we confront the problems and challenges of our lives.We may lose our jobs, our dear ones my be suffering, we may be misunderstood—all these things happen to us –but these experiences will not have the power to take away the peace from our lives, as long as the we have the spirtual vision of our faith.We can see these dark experiences of our lives the shadow of the Cross of our dear Lord who will take us to victory, hope and happiness.

One of our novelists, Walker Percy has once said: “ Never has there been such loneliness in the midst of crowds, never such hunger in the face of satiation….All that is needed is a bearer of Good News who speaks it with such authority that it can penetrate the most jaded language.” We have to become the new Siloam”, the new pool of evangelization for others –for our families, neighbors and colleagues. They should revive their faith by seeing our commitment to the Lord.

The Holy Father, in his address to the people who gathered in St. Peter’s Square on March 3, said: “It is necessary that people rediscover their baptism, approaching the inexhaustible spiritual vigor of the sanctifying grace received in it, in order to transmit it to every realm of personal and social life.”

The blind man in today’s Gospel is asking us to reassert our faith daily and never to lose hope whatever may be the nature of the difficulties, sicknesses, tragedies we experience in our lives. As we move through the dark events of our lives we begin to realize more and more the immense love of Jesus for us and Jesus becomes revealed brighter and brighter as the Light of the world. There is no other person who can shed light on our lives or the world than Jesus. Like the blind man, with the vision that we have attained through our faith, we shall say, “Lord, I believe you are the Light of my life, my Savior.”

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