“It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him.”
Jewish teachers often believed suffering and sickness was due to the sins of the parents or even grandparents. This curse was removed by Jesus in this Sunday’s Gospel. And Paul in the letter to Romans reminds us that “if God does not condemn us for our own sins, He surely will not condemn us for the sins of others.”
During this Pandemic crisis, our social media and television is flooded with suggestions, questions, and comments concerning the way we now will live our daily lives. On Facebook, there are more posts asking to join each other in prayer and cautioning us not to panic. Changes are being made daily. Many people seek the answers to what literally caused this crisis and how to stop it. Blame is being placed on different people and actions.
In today’s Gospel, Jesus makes it clear that the man’s blindness is not due to anyone’s sins but that “the work of God might be shown in his life.” Maybe, just maybe, this crisis we are experiencing now has a similar purpose: not to debate who is to blame, but to perceive what works of God might be shown as a result of this pandemic. And these results are already revealed day by day as friends and neighbors take time, effort and concern for each other’s situations and dilemmas. Yes, Facebook and Instagram are filled with these acts of kindness and generosity.
Cured by Jesus of his blindness, the man, who was born blind, was questioned by Jewish authorities and neighbors as to why he can see now. All he could answer was that ‘the man called Jesus, made clay and anointed my eyes and told me wash in the Siloam pool. I did and now I am able to see.” They asked me where they could find Jesus. He told them: “I do not know.”
So where is Jesus? He is the Light of the world. And the world desperately needs the Light of Christ to see what ‘works of God are being displayed’ even now during this pandemic crisis.
Sister Celeste Hupert, CSFN