The readings for this Sunday expresses the cry for God’s help of the needy. The first reading from the book of Job illustrates the depression that Job was going through, he was at the point of giving up. The psalm gives us words of encouragement in this time of suffering and feeling of downtrodden. The psalm is a hymn of praise to our God who answers the prayer of those who call upon Him. In St. Paul’s letter to the Corinthians, he speaks about his mission of preaching the good news. In the Gospel reading, we see Jesus as the one who cares for the sick, the injured and those who need help. Jesus’ intimate time with His Father – Abba – is Jesus’ source of strength in His ministry.
Almost all of us, in the past months since this pandemic brought by COVID-19 have experienced difficult times in our lives. Most of us, like Job, have had to face losses and changes in our lives that were out of our control. Job’s situation and difficulties somehow might be the same to some of us, who during this hard moment in our history had lost members in the family, wife, husband, children, mother, father, relatives, friends, source of income, and everything we had. Job also suffered from a life-threatening disease, but nevertheless, amidst his pitiful life situation, he never blamed God, something that I greatly admired in him.
Obviously, in our time today, many people got depressed and have lost the sense of meaning and purpose in life, including myself. I had realized that in this last 12 months with the pandemic, I am going through a tough time. I lost hope with the mission that God entrusted to me and my journey in the Graduate School in writing a thesis. Our situation now limits my movements that cause me to lose hope. When we are faced with situation beyond our control, we tend to lose hope. But like Job, we put our confidence with God whom in faith we knew that someday things will get better and one day this pandemic will pass. We hope that the new normal that we are living will be the better normal.
And as I deeply ponder the readings and the Gospel, I turned to God in the silence of my heart to ask for the renewal of our world and healing from the COVID– 19 that threatened the whole world. I hope and I believe that united in prayer, with all the faithful who cried for healing and renewal of our world, we may be able to experience the healing of Jesus, the same as He did, when He cured Simon’s mother – in – law and all who were ill or possessed by demons. And like Jesus, we turn to the divine presence of our Abba – Father, to ask for the strength and guidance that we need so that amidst this life situation, like St. Paul, we can proclaim the good news even virtually. To end, we asked ourselves: What can I do to reach out and help other people to experience the healing touch of God? Looking at Simon’s mother – in – law after she was cured, she helped the group of Jesus in helping others, her actions are a way of expressing one’s gratitude. Let us all be grateful to God for touching our lives in His own and mysterious ways.

Claire Marie R. Sy, CMT
Bl. Francisco Palau community, Manila – Philippines