Who is in and who is out?

Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Wisdom 1:13-15; 2:23-24

II Corinthians 8: 7, 9, 13-15

Mark 5: 21-43

I love being a priest and I love celebrating the Eucharist. I know I get excited, but I cannot help but be excited, because there is nowhere else we can go that gives us what the Holy Eucharist gives us! We should be different as we leave here.

I love the Eucharist because it is an obligation. The Church got it right! It needs to be an obligation, to move us to wanting to be here, desiring to be here and knowing we cannot not live without being here. 

I love the Eucharist because I look around and I know some of your stories. There are people in great pain and suffering. Thank you for being here, because you are looking for some answers that are not easy, but you trust that someday those answers will come. I look around and I see some who are filled with great joy. Thank you for coming and giving thanks to God for what he has brought you. 

I love the Eucharist, because all are welcomed. It does not matter who you are, or what you are, or what planet you are from, you are always welcomed here at St. Patrick’s. 

I love the Eucharist, because it is here that our lives can be changed. The Word of God challenge’s us to be what God is calling us to be and to fight against what the world is calling us to be. We come to the Eucharist to be strengthened in doing what is pleasing to God. As is the case in today’s readings, where we are challenged to look at our lives and ask, “Who is in my ‘in’ group and who is in my ‘out’ group? And why? 

In our Gospel, there is the synagogue official, named Jairus, who comes to Jesus and begs him to come to his home and heal his daughter who is dying. Jairus would be on the outside because as a synagogue official, he would have wanted to protect the Jewish faith and the worship at the synagogue. However, he risks everything and comes to Jesus. There is the woman, who has been bleeding for 12 years. She most defiantly would be on the outside, because no-one would come near her because of her bleeding. She too risks it all. 

The most incredible thing that Jesus does is he goes to the home of Jairus the synagogue official and Jesus touches his daughter making himself unclean. Jesus is now a member of the outside. Jesus allows the woman who is bleeding to touch him which would have made him unclean and a member of the outside group. Do we see that Jesus breaks down all the barriers of who is “in” and who is “out” and he ministers to them all? 

We are challenged this day to see who is in our “in” group, and who is in our “out” group, and why do we keep the “out” group at a distance. We are challenged to die to our self-will, our pride, and to reach out to others this day.   

We come to this Eucharist this day, the ultimate sign of unity; where our God comes and reaches out to touch us.  Let us then have the strength to reach out to others as well.  

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