God restores dignity even in difficulties

At the Angelus, commenting on the passage of the healing of the man blind from birth, Francis invited the faithful to “know how to see the good, without propagating criticism and suspicion.” He greets all the parents: “May Saint Joseph be a model, support and consolation for you.”

Vatican City () – “When Jesus heals us, he restores our dignity, a full dignity that encompasses all of life.” And this frees us from the “fear of what others will say.” This is how Pope Francis recalled today, addressing the faithful gathered in Saint Peter’s Square for the Angelus prayer.

Commenting on the passage of the healing of the blind man that is narrated in chapter 9 of the Gospel of John and that the liturgy proposes today, the Pontiff invited us to dwell on the “bad way” in which various people and groups welcome the miracle of Jesus. From the disciples to the neighbors, from the scribes to the parents, in all the reactions “closed hearts emerge before the sign of Jesus, for different reasons: because they are looking for someone to blame, because they do not know how to be surprised, because they do not want to change, because they are blocked because of the fear”.

On the contrary, the only one who reacts well is the blind: happy to see, he bears witness to what happened to him in the simplest way: “I was blind and now I see.” “Before,” the Pope commented, “he was forced to beg and suffered from people’s prejudices. Now, free in body and spirit, he bears witness to Jesus: he does not invent or hide anything. He is not afraid of what they will say: he has already Known all his life the bitter taste of marginalization, he has already felt the indifference and contempt of passers-by, of those who considered him an outcast of society, useful at most for the pietism of a few alms.Now, cured, He no longer fears these derogatory attitudes, because Jesus has given him full dignity”.

Hence the invitation to the faithful to ask themselves: “Like the blind man, do we know how to see the good and be grateful for the gifts we receive? How is my dignity? Do we bear witness to Jesus or sow criticism and suspicion? Are we happy to say that Jesus loves us and saves us or, like the parents of the man blind from birth, we allow ourselves to be caged by fear of what people will think?And also: how do we welcome people with physical limitations or beggars on the street? As curses or as opportunities to reach out to them with love?”

“Let us ask for the grace to be amazed every day by the gifts of God – the Pope concluded – and to see the various circumstances of life, even the most difficult to accept, as opportunities to do good, as Jesus did with the blind man”.

At the end of the Angelus prayer, Francis recalled Ecuador, hit by an earthquake that caused deaths, injuries and immense damage: “I am close and I assure you of my prayers,” he said. Later, the pontiff congratulated all the parents on the feast of Saint Joseph, inviting the faithful to pray the Our Father for them. “May they find in him the model, the support and the consolation to live his paternity well,” he added.

Finally, also this Sunday he asked that they not be forgotten and pray for “the martyred Ukrainian people who continue to suffer the crimes of war.”

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Written by Editor TLN

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