jesus heals simon peters mother in law

Sunday’s Liturgy

Sunday’s Liturgy

This Sunday, 4th February, is the Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time. You can find the readings for Sunday’s Mass here. On our diocesan Liturgy Project website, Canon Gerard Flynn shares this commentary…

If you have ever had an operation, or been ill, you will remember landmarks of your recovery:

  • Today’s the first day that I have been out of bed to sit up.
  • My hair was washed; I felt human again.
  • I walked into the garden!
  • I really wanted to do something.‍

We meet God in the kitchen and the classroom, the hospital ward and the office. In one healing moment today’s Gospel shows that. God is at the sick bed and in the kitchen.

Simon’s mother-in-law has had a fever. Jesus does something that accompanies every healing, in the Gospel and the hospital ward. He visits her and touches her. Touch by itself is powerfully healing. Jesus takes her hand and helps her up. The landmarks of healing come at once. She is up, in the kitchen, at work, doing what a Jewish mother rejoices to do, feeding guests. I guess that chicken broth with barley featured in her meal.

I wish I knew her name but, whoever she is, I hear her saying later to her friends: It was wonderful. I knew how much better I was when I got back to work. She discovers God in Jesus. She sees the sacred in the cooking pot and the serving spoon. She is fully healed. She shows that all of us who are saved need to be ready to serve the Lord and to serve our neighbours.

Somebody once said: Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life. If we see God in our work, we can work very hard without our work ever being hard.

If you’re not sure, just contrast the attitude of Jonah: Is not man’s life on earth nothing more than pressed service, his time no better than hired drudgery? Have you ever worked with people like that?

Next week St Paul tells us: Whatever you eat, whatever you drink, whatever you do at all, do it for the glory of God. I hope that this week you feel as restored as Simon’s mother-in-law; that you will feel sent out to do everything for the glory of God.

Image: New Ways Ministry