“We remember how you loved us and we remember how you love us still” These were the words that came as I began my lectio on Mark’s Gospel for this Sixth Sunday of the year, the final Sunday of Ordinary Time before we begin the season of Lent.
Suddenly I was flooded with memories of spending time with this Scripture passage during my very first directed retreat forty years ago:
- Reading it slowly
- Allowing myself to enter into the passage
- Reflecting on the similarity of my own form of ‘leprosy’
- Feeling my own sinfulness and
- Begging Jesus to heal me.
Then I fell asleep and when I woke up, I really felt that I had been healed. It was almost as if I was reliving that special experience of being healed.
For me, the leper’s request: “If you wish, you can make me clean” and Jesus’ response: “I do will it. Be made clean” is as rich and vital for me today as it was those many years ago. You and I will always need the healing power of our God .
My prayer for us today and during the season of Lent is that the leprosy of violence in our thoughts, feelings, memories and imaginings can be healed. As Henri Nouwen often said : “We can be wounded healers in a wounded world.”
Anne Stedman, OSB