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Melto D’Moronoyo: Love and forgiveness have the power to heal us today

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Healing of the Paralytic by Fr Abdo Badawi. Credit: sjmaronite.org
Healing of the Paralytic by Fr Abdo Badawi. Credit: sjmaronite.org

Your sins are forgiven. These are the most beautiful words any child could ever hear from a parent. The Word of God in this “Sunday of the Paralytic” in the Maronite Liturgical calendar gives us a strong reminder of the healing power of forgiveness and compassion.

The paralytic was miraculously cured of his lifelong disability with these kind and loving words from Jesus. He could have just said to him “get up and walk.”

Instead, Jesus wanted to express his divine love through the power of forgiveness; through the sacrament of deliverance and healing.

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In these days when every kind of convenience is found at our fingertips, and when social media has taken the place of personal encounters and dialogue, even the family structure would appear to have lost much more than it has gained.

Instead of calling one another occasionally to say “Hi, how are you today?” we tend to use text messages or social media platforms, hiding our faces and our emotions from one another.

Smiles become nothing more than emoticons on the phone, and we forget what it means “to see someone’s heart through the window of their eyes.” What kind of a society have we become, when hugs and kisses are replaced with an X and an O?

In the Maronite Liturgy this week, our Lord wants to tell us something very important; a message especially for families to ponder. Do we talk to each other at home with love and respect? Do we make time to share our day’s events with one another?

Do we smile and show affection to our siblings, parents, spouses or children? These are simple, yet essential questions to ask ourselves in all honesty.

Have we become paralytics in spirit, our prayer become stagnant, and our heart despondent unless we are being entertained and motivated by external sources?

It’s not easy to live in this world and not become a part of the world, yet, this is what we are called to do as faithful followers of Christ. Through our interaction, we are called to lift each other up, rather than drag one another down.

The Gospel of Mark tells of a paralytic who was brought by his friends to be healed by Jesus. Friends who saw his pain and disability, and having compassion enough to personally get involved, took him to see this man Jesus who was reported to have been healing the incurable.

They believed he could heal their paralytic friend. They didn’t give up when there was no room for them to even reach Jesus. In fact, they tore open the roof of the house and brought him to Jesus in that way. If it were not for their efforts and availability, that paralytic would still be on the street corner paralysed in body and soul.

This is a reminder to show our love for God by loving our neighbour, as this is one of the greatest commandments given to us.

At home, our neighbour is there living with us in the family. Mutual respect and love must be exemplified through words and actions, always aware that children will learn from what they see before them.

Let us consider the efforts of the friends of the paralytic, and strive to put more effort into all that we do each day in our journey as one family toward our heavenly home.

Let us not forget the healing power of forgiveness, and never be too proud to say “I’m sorry, please forgive me” or too proud to say, “I forgive you.”

In a loving family, there is no room for pride, no room for isolation, no room for neglect.

The words of healing that Christ spoke to the paralytic are the epitome of true love: “My son, your sins are forgiven.”

There is nothing more healing or more powerful than forgiveness; for the one who forgives and for the one who is forgiven. Let us never forget that God is Love, and love has been freely given to us.

Let us love as God has loved us and continues to love us. Indeed, let the world know we are Christians by our love.

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