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13th Sunday (B)
Wis 1:13-15; 2:23-24

The Book of Wisdom speaks of human imperishability. As the author of life, it is only with life that God is concerned (v13). Death here is understood as a total and final separation from God. Physical death does not figure prominently in the author’s thought. God is not responsible for nor does he desire the death of any person. All things came from the hand of God as good (Gen 1), with God endowing much of the world with life (v14). In referring to the creation account (v23; Gen 1:26), the author speaks of the sharing in God’s nature as conferring immortality. Again, this is not a natural immortality but creation in God’s justice. For immortality comes from a life of justice and the unjust will not experience it (v24). Uprightness of life constitutes the likeness of God in humanity (6:18f). Death which is the loss of justice makes its entry through the devil. Those who espouse evil are destined for death. For them, there is no immortality (v24; Gen 3:1-24; Rom 5:12f).

2 Cor 8:7, 9, 13-15

St Paul appeals to the Christians of Corinth to help the church in Jerusalem in distress (Chs. 8-9). A pastoral call for help rests on a solid and inspiring Christological principle: they have been especially enriched by the Christ who impoverished himself on their behalf (v9). Just as they have received, they should be willing to give, (v7; 1 Cor 1:5; 2 Cor 6:11ff). In surrendering his divinity to become human, even to the point of suffering, Christ brought to the poverty of the humans the riches of divinity in sharing the life in the Spirit (Phil 2:6 – 11).

Mk 5:21 – 43

Two miracle stories are woven together in this narrative. They are recorded in the same way, although in abbreviated form, in Matthew 9:18-26) and Luke (8:40-56), both of which depend on Mark. The story of Jairus’ daughter (vv21-24, 35-43) is interrupted by the healing of the sick woman (vv25-34). The account of both miracles constitutes an important catechetical piece from the early church’s life. The healing and the revivification are symbols of salvation and the work which Christ effects in the life of each believer. Jairus, a Jewish official, adopts the posture of a suppliant and asks that his daughter be “saved” (Gr: sōzō σωζω) and “live”(Gr: zao ζωῃ). In both stories, faith is underlined: Jesus assures the woman that her faith is the cause of her salvation while in Jairus’ story, the notice of his daughter’s death requires of him an added measure of faith (v36). And with the command of Jesus to the girl to “arise”, the same verb (Gr: egeire ἔγειρε) used of Jesus’ resurrection (14:28; 16:6), it becomes a catechesis on Jesus as the cause of resurrection and life, as he meets every Christian in healing and eternal life-giving.

Jesus still acts powerfully in our own time and place. Conversions, healings, answers to prayer-these continue to abound. So let us believe in Jesus’ power, as Jairus and the woman did. Step out in faith and ask for what we need, as we pray: “Jesus, I am reaching out to touch your cloak today. Heal me and pour your life into me!” Amen.

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Veritas Editorial

Rev. Fr. Anton CT Pascual

Rev. Fr. Anton CT Pascual

President of Radio Veritas

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