One Minute Reflection – 9 October – St John Leonardi (1541-1609) Confessor, Priest, Founder – 1 Corinthians 1:4-8, Matthew9:1-8 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/
“Which is easier to say: Thy sins are forgiven thee, or to say: Arise, and walk?” – Matthew 9:5
REFLECTION – “And people there brought to him a paralytic.” Saint Matthew merely says that this paralytic was carried to Jesus. Other Evangelists describe, how he was let down through an opening in the roof and placed before the Lord, without expressing any particular request, leaving it to Him to assess the needs …
“When Jesus saw their faith,” the Gospel says, that is to say, the faith of those who had brought the man to Him. Consider how sometimes Christ pays no attention to the faith of the sick person – perhaps because, the latter is incapable of it, being unconscious or possessed with an evil spirit. However, in this case, this paralytic had great trust in Jesus, otherwise, would he have allowed them to let him down in front of Him? Christ responds to this trust with an extraordinary miracle. With the power of God, He forgives this man’s sins. Thus He showed, that He is equal to the Father, a truth He had already shown, when He said to the leper: “I will do it – be made clean” (Mt 8:3) … and when, with a word, He stilled the tempestuous sea (Mt 8:26), or when, as God, He had cast out the demons who recognised in Him their ruler and their judge (Mt 8:32). So here, He shows His adversaries, to their great astonishment, that He is equal to the Father
And once more, the Saviour shows here, how He turns away from anything spectacular or a source of vainglory. On all sides the crowd is pressing Him, yet, He is in no hurry to work a visible miracle by healing the external paralysis of this man …. He begins with an invisible miracle – by healing the man’s soul. This kind of healing, is far more beneficial for him and, outwardly speaking, less glorious for Christ.” – St John Chrysostom (345-407) Priest at Antioch then Bishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor of the Church – homilies on Saint Matthew’s Gospel, no. 29, 1.
PRAYER – O God, Who in a wondrous way graciously urged blessed John, Thy Confessor, to propagate Thy faith among the pagans and through him brought together a new religious family in Thy Church for the education of the faithful, grant Thy servants, so to profit by his teaching that we may reach everlasting rewards. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).