Gospel Thought for Today
5th August Wednesday of the 18th Week in Ordinary Time
Gospel: Matthew 15:21-28
At that time Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon.
And behold, a Canaanite woman of that district came and called out,
“Have pity on me, Lord, Son of David!
My daughter is tormented by a demon.”
But he did not say a word in answer to her.
His disciples came and asked him,
“Send her away, for she keeps calling out after us.”
He said in reply,
“I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”
But the woman came and did him homage, saying, “Lord, help me.”
He said in reply,
“It is not right to take the food of the children
and throw it to the dogs.”
She said, “Please, Lord, for even the dogs eat the scraps
that fall from the table of their masters.”
Then Jesus said to her in reply,
“O woman, great is your faith!
Let it be done for you as you wish.”
And her daughter was healed from that hour.
The Gospel of the Lord.
The Mass intention is for Steve Beech RIP.
Jesus withdrew to a non-Jewish territory due to the tensions happening back home. If we look at the previous chapters of the Gospel, we read that John the Baptist was beheaded (Chapter 14) and Jesus challenged the teachings of the Pharisees and scribes (Chapter 15). Jesus experienced rejection from the Jews. On the other hand, a Canaanite woman believed in Him and asked that He heals her possessed daughter.
Jesus did not grant her request straightaway. Was Jesus playing games with the woman? Worse, was He a racist? The Lord was neither of these! He did not give in at once to test the woman’s faith, like when He asked another person “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone”. (Mark 10:18). How people respond to His question would tell what they think of Him. The Canaanite woman persevered in her plea. Amazed at her faith, Jesus healed her daughter.
• What would be your attitude if there is resistance and refusal to your work of spreading Christ’s Good News?
• What would you do if your prayer has not been answered?
• Inequality and racial discrimination still exist, especially during this lockdown. What can you do to eradicate these? How can you make the parish community more welcoming to people of various cultures?
Lord, thank You for Your Word today. Give us a strong faith so we may persist in spreading Your Good News, especially to those in the peripheries like the Canaanite woman. Help us persevere in prayer. Grant us the courage to treat people equally for we are all Your children. Amen.