September 13, 2022
by Nancy Shirley
Creighton University's College of Nursing
click here for photo and information about the writer

Memorial of Saint John Chrysostom, Bishop and Doctor of the Church
Lectionary: 444

1 Corinthians 12:12-14, 27-31a
Psalm 100:1b-2, 3, 4, 5
Luke 7:11-17

Praying Ordinary Time

An invitation to make the
Online Retreat

This reflection is coming soon. Until then, this is a reflection on these readings by Cindy Murphy McMahon.

Today’s Gospel is one of my favorites. Jesus and the disciples, followed by a large crowd of “fans” of Jesus, are walking to a city called Nain. As they approach the city gate, they encounter a funeral procession. A young man has died, his mother is a widow and there is a large group of mourners.

What first strikes me is how Jesus goes out of his way to approach the gathering. He is “moved with pity” when he sees the deceased man’s mother. She was weeping and filled with grief. Perhaps he projects how his own mother, who was also probably a widow by that time, would feel and behave upon his death, which he most likely often had in the back of his mind.

But the mother didn’t approach him, nor did anyone else. They probably didn’t even know who he was. They were focused on their own loss and weren’t looking for any solutions or miracles.

Jesus stretches out his hand and the young man who was on his way to burial returns to life! What a gift to the mother, to all his friends and family! Anyone can relate to the elation one would feel, because who hasn’t had a friend or family member who died too soon? I remember when my grandmother died, and then my mother, I regularly had dreams in which they were very much alive. In the dreams I would keep saying, “Are you really alive? This is so amazing!” and they would assure me that they were. When I would wake up, instead of being disappointed, the elation remained and I continued feeling assured of them indeed being very much alive, even if not physically present.

Again, Jesus was “moved with pity.” That is the nature of God. He is moved with pity when he sees human suffering. Yes, he hears our requests, but he also frequently makes the first move. This should be reassuring to us when we feel God is ignoring us or is unconcerned about our problems. He hears us, he sees us and he cares about us. Amen, halleluiah!

Click on the link below to send an e-mail response
to the writer of this reflection.

Sharing this reflection with others by Email, on Facebook or Twitter:

Email this pageFacebookTwitter

Print Friendly

See all the Resources we offer on our Online Ministries Home Page

Daily Reflection Home

Collaborative Ministry Office Guestbook