14th Week in Ordinary Time
1st Reading: Hos 2:16, 17c–18, 21–22
Thus says Yahweh: So I am going to allure her, lead her once more into the desert, where I can speak to her tenderly.
Then I will give back her vineyards, make the Valley of Achor a door of hope. There she will answer me as in her youth, as when she came out of the land of Egypt.
On that day, Yahweh says, you will call me my husband, and never again: my Baal.
You will be my spouse forever, betrothed in justice and integrity; we will be united in love and tenderness. I will espouse you in faithfulness and you will come to know Yahweh.
Gospel: Matthew 9:18-26
While Jesus was speaking to them, an official of the synagogue came up to him, bowed before him and said, “My daughter has just died, but come and place your hands on her, and she will live.” Jesus stood up and followed him with his disciples.
Then a woman who had suffered from a severe bleeding for twelve years came up from behind and touched the edge of his cloak. For she thought, “If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.” Jesus turned, saw her and said, “Courage, my daughter, your faith has saved you.” And from that moment the woman was cured.
When Jesus arrived at the official’s house and saw the flute players and the excited crowd, he said, “Get out of here! The girl is not dead. She is only sleeping!” And they laughed at him. But once the crowd had been turned out, Jesus went in and took the girl by the hand, and she stood up. The news of this spread through the whole area.
We can be ourselves, we can be spontaneous with our friends because we know how they will react; but we do not know how strangers might react so we play safe. The woman in the story wanted contact with Jesus, and at the same time she wanted the security of anonymity. So in the press of the crowd she touched the hem of his cloak; she wanted an anonymous cure. It is still very much with us today. There are many who go from one fad to another looking for healing: crystals, pyramids, pranotherapy, aura reading…. In such things there is no Who to touch you, no Son of God with fire of compassion in his eyes, who looks for you saying, “Who touched me?”
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