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We respectfully acknowledge the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation, as the traditional caretakers of the land which is the Richmond Catholic Parish.

We acknowledge the Elders, past and present.

May we, too, be good stewards of this land.

New Parish Office Hours

Richmond Catholic Parish wishes to advise that our Parish Office Hours have changed to the following:

  • Monday 9:00am - 2:30pm
  • Tuesday - Friday 9:00am - 5:00pm
Opening our eyes to Jesus PDF Print E-mail

Sunday 26 March 2017 - Fourth Sunday of Lent

The blind man went off and washed himself and came away with his sight restored

Jesus restores the blind mans' sight.Today’s gospel reading is the second in a series of three quite lengthy readings from the gospel of John that are a feature of the Lenten season in Year A of the liturgical cycle. The three readings address three significant themes and images: water; light; and new life. Although today’s passage is about the healing of a blind man, the event takes place as part of a longer section of the gospel dealing with the image of light and specifically the image of Jesus as Light of the World.

The question asked by the disciples at the opening of this event is an interesting one. They ask, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, for him to have been born blind?’ In Jewish culture at the time, any physical affliction was deemed to be punishment from God for sinful behaviour. As the man had been born blind, the suspicion falls on his parents as having committed such a terrible offence against God that their son is born blind. Jesus immediately rejects this interpretation of the man’s affliction. Physical and mental illnesses or disabilities are in no way punishment from God.

Although the man’s physical sight is restored by Jesus simply enough, his journey from darkness into light is a more complicated affair. He faces disbelief, ridicule and even abuse from the Jewish authorities as they try to discredit Jesus and diminish the impact of the miracle. In fact, their treatment of the man is what drives him along the road from recipient of an act of mercy to a confirmed believer. Furthermore, the Jewish authorities, despite their physical capacity for sight, are shown to be the ones who are truly blind and trapped in darkness because they deny the light that is before their very eyes.

The story of the man born blind is a perfect choice for the Lenten season. During this season we are invited once again to open our eyes to Jesus; to step out of darkness and into the light; to look towards the future with hope and not despair. When we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus at the Easter vigil, we celebrate the coming of the Light of the World into our lives. This annual call to turn away from darkness and walk in the light is a powerful and poetic call to focus our lives on the way of Jesus.

Greg Sunter, Liturgy Help

Image courtesy of Hermanoleon Clipart

 
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