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Homily by Fr. Paul Plante

13th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Year B

July 2, 2000

Scriptural Reference: Mark 5:21-43

     Did you notice that at a certain point in the story of Jesus raising the daughter of Jairus, some have given up hope – “your daughter has died, they say – why trouble Jesus any longer?”

     But Jesus reassures Jairus – “Do not be afraid; just have faith.” Fortunately, Jairus listened to Jesus instead of those who had lost hope.

     At times when there might be reason to lose faith or hope, which voice do we listen to? Do we simply say: “there is no more reason to hope, I give up?” Do we sometimes catch ourselves saying, “He or she is hopeless; I am not doing anymore for them.” Do we sometimes say of ourselves: “I am hopeless. I am not even going to try to change anymore.”

     Instead, can we pay close attention to the voice of Jesus that is commanding? – “I say to you arise!”

     Could it mean that one has to literally get up from doing nothing to help himself or herself? Could it mean that one has to get up from constant self-pity and complaining that he or she is the only one to have been dealt with unfairly in life? Could it mean that one has to stop blaming and go on with life no matter what has occurred that was so painful? Could it mean that one has to get up and accept the help of others, a special program, a new way of life to get out of a destructive habit?

     Could it mean that one has to get up and function, break through lethargy or laziness and gain true independence? Could it mean that one has to get up and live up to the demands of our faith, of our religion in order to be a faithful member and enjoy all the blessings that come from such an effort?

     If Jairus in today’s Gospel had lost faith, had given up, he would never have gotten his daughter back alive. He did not quit and life was restored. It is our turn not to quit and to have life restored in us!

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