Memorial of Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini, Virgin
“Stand up and go; your faith has saved you” Jesus commands a Samaritan who is the only one of ten lepers to show any gratitude after his healing. The man has experienced the truth that God does “defend” and “rescue the lowly.” Each of us has areas of our lives that cry out for healing. Our hearts can bear scars just as devastating as a leprous infection. These wounds can come from things done unto us or that we have done unto others. Perhaps someone in some way has abused us. Or maybe we have sinned in a way for which we cannot forgive ourselves. No matter how extreme or even ordinary our wounds, God wants to reach out to us, to “cleanse” us with His tender, powerful love.
Pope Francis has said, “We need a church capable of rediscovering the maternal womb of mercy. Without mercy we have little chance nowadays of entering the world of ‘wounded’ persons in need of understanding, forgiveness, love.” One of the most powerful movies that I have seen is October Baby which centers on a young woman who finds out that she survived a failed attempt at a terminated pregnancy. In her grief, she eventually seeks out her mother in an act of encompassing forgiveness. The Book of Wisdom assures us “the lowly may be pardoned out of mercy.” Let us not conceive of ourselves as “mighty” but as God’s little ones to whom he is devoted to healing in His own time and way, if we would but let Him.