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30th Sunday – B      

30th Sunday – B

Dear friends in Christ,

 

Today’s Gospel tells the story of Bartimaeus a blind man. Hearing that Jesus was passing by the roadside where he sat begging for money, he began crying out loud, “Jesus, son of David, have pity on me!” And when he heard Jesus’ words, “Call him,” he threw aside his cloak and quickly came to him. He simply asked, “Master, I want to see.” That day, Bartimeaus received a double gifts: eyesight for the body and faith for the soul.

Mark concluded his story, saying, “Immediately he received his sight and followed him on the way.” This didn’t necessarily mean that the blind man actually joined Jesus on his journey to Jerusalem. The Evangelist seemed to say that the blind man did not have any life direction until the moment he received from Jesus the new light and the new life of a disciple. He was a model of the way Christian discipleship begins: a personal reaction and a heartfelt response to God’s call.

Quite often, the physically blind are well aware of their handicap while the spiritually blind are not. Bartimaeus could not see but his faith was clearer than the faith of those who saw. He had no doubt in Jesus while the others remained in the darkness of unbelief and hesitation. This was what Jesus meant when he told the Pharisees who chose to keep their eyes closed and their ears shut: “There are none so blind as those who will not see, and none so deaf as those who will not hear.”

The point is: “Jesus is calling you.” By calling the blind man and asking him what he wanted, Jesus helped to expose strong faith in him. Jesus is calling us and expecting us, too, to come to him in order to see and grow out of our blindness. The healing process requires that our response to Jesus must grow more real and our desire for him more personal each day. Until we are involved in that process, we will continue to be blind.

Fr. Joe