Engaging the Gospel – Fourth Sunday of Lent

Fourth Sunday of Lent: Gospel – John 9:1-41

Jesus heals the man born blind

Blessed John Paul II encouraged us to see ourselves in the blind man, and so become open to Christ:

The man born blind represents the human person marred by sin, who desires to know the truth about himself and his personal destiny, but is prevented from doing so by congenital illness.

That “congenital illness” is sin and its lingering effects that still darken our vision.

 Only Jesus can cure him: He is “the light of the world” (Jn 9,5).

By giving ourselves over to Jesus, as the blind man did, we too are healed:

…every human being who is spiritually blind from birth has the fresh possibility of “coming to the light,” namely to supernatural life…

For the one who meets Christ, there is no other alternative: either he recognizes his need of Him and of His light, or he chooses to do without…

Dear brothers and sisters, may no one close his soul to Christ!

Angelus of March 10, 2002

The blind man is healed because he is open to Christ, and his healing is richly symbolic.

By instructing him to wash in the Pool of Siloam, the Lord is prefiguring the sacrament of Baptism.

Siloam means “Sent,” and Jesus is “the One Sent” (Pope Benedict XVI, Jesus of Nazareth, Vol. 1, p. 242), through whom we are cleansed, given light, and made a new creation in the waters of Baptism (Catechism paragraphs 1213-16).

Yet Baptism, as “the sacramental entry into the life of faith” (1236), is just the beginning of our journey.

“For all the baptized, children or adults, faith must grow after Baptism. For this reason, the Church celebrates each year at the Easter Vigil the renewal of baptismal promises” (1254).

Question for reflection: When have I seen things anew in the light of Christ?