Fourth Sunday of Lent 2017
1 Samuel 16:1b, 6-7, 10-13a; Psalm 23: 1-3a, 3b-6; Ephesians 5:8-14; John 9:1-41
“His blindness has nothing to do with his sins or his parents’ sins.” Jesus says this, however, not to enter into a debate with Jewish thought. He does not intend to argue an issue or disclaim a doctrine.
Rather, he desires to shift the attention of the disciples away from the theoretical issue of blindness and suffering to the man in need. Our Lord was not concerned with the cause of suffering, but with the object of suffering. Here was a person who had a problem, and it is the need of the person that concerns him and should concern us. Jesus calls this to the attention of the disciples with the statement, “He is blind so that God’s power might be seen at work in him.” The place to begin thinking about suffering is with the fact that God can use it as an opportunity to find meaning.
We who can see, are we blind to the plight of the undocumented in our midst? We who can see, are we blind to the struggle of refugees displaced by war? We who can see, are we blind to the scandal of human trafficking? We who can see, are we blind to the gun violence that takes so many innocent lives? We who can see, are we blind to the effects that our laws have on the poor? We who can see, are we blind to the need for tutoring at-risk inner-city children? We who can see, are we blind to the loneliness that exists for many on campus?
The man who was born blind came to see. The religious leaders of the time, who could see, remained blind to the person of Jesus standing before them. Where do you see? Where are you blind? Coming to faith is a life-long process. The man called Jesus— He is a prophet. He is the Lord. May your journey of faith engage you every day. May you become able, more and more, to see.
On the occasion of the first anniversary of Fr. Bob's death, we share one of his homilies from 2017 on a topic that is still relevant today. This homily can be found in The Reverend Robert L. Beloin Homily Collection, Saint Thomas More Chapel & Center at Yale 2019;
p. 41. This book is available by making a gift to the Robert L. Beloin Fund for Faith in Action. For more informtion, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.