(Mt 9: 18-26)
While Jesus was speaking, an official came forward,
knelt down before him, and said,
“My daughter has just died.
But come, lay your hand on her, and she will live.”
Jesus rose and followed him, and so did his disciples.
A woman suffering hemorrhages for twelve years came up behind him
and touched the tassel on his cloak.
She said to herself, “If only I can touch his cloak, I shall be cured.”
Jesus turned around and saw her, and said,
“Courage, daughter! Your faith has saved you.”
And from that hour the woman was cured.
When Jesus arrived at the official’s house
and saw the flute players and the crowd who were making a commotion,
he said, “Go away! The girl is not dead but sleeping.”
And they ridiculed him.
When the crowd was put out, he came and took her by the hand,
and the little girl arose.
And news of this spread throughout all that land.
An author once compared the miraculous cloak of Jesus that the woman touched to the sacraments of the Church. Just as the woman in the Gospel reached out in faith and touched Jesus through his cloak, so we can reach out in faith and touch Jesus through the sacraments. If we do, Jesus’ healing power will flow into us, just as it flowed into the woman. The comparison is not perfect but it helps us appreciate what a precious gift the sacraments are. They serve a valuable purpose. They are powerful symbols that mediate the healing power of God, leading us to wholeness and fullness of life. May we have the desire to encounter the Lord frequently through the sacraments what we can experience this powerful presence.
By bringing the synagogue official’s daughter back to life, Jesus proves once more that he is no ordinary human being. Son of God that He is, He has power over death. For Jesus and for us believers, earthly death is only a form of “sleep”. Death, therefore, is not something that should frighten us. As the late Cardinal Bernardin once said: “Death is a friend, not an enemy.”
Daily Gospel 2017