The first two chapters of Hosea speak of God commanding Hosea to take a prostitute as his wife who went back to prostitution after giving him two children. Despite what she did, God commanded Hosea to take her back. The First Reading is God’s message to Israel, that he will bring her to the wilderness and speak tenderly to her, despite her infidelity to him. God also says he will take her as his wife, three times. This shows the mercy of God who is willing to forgive us when we allow him to purify us, to protect, provide and heal us.
Jesus proves to us God wants to heal us, especially our relationship with him. He raised the daughter of the leader of the synagogue from the dead and he also healed a woman who had been hemorrhaging for twelve years. It is God’s will that we experience the power of God as he gives us new life and as he heals us, especially our relationship with him.
St Maria Gorretti was a twelve year old girl who was killed because she would not allow a man to molest her. The man was so angry that he stabbed her eleven times and as she tried to run away, the man stabbed her three more times. As she lay dying, Maria Gorretti forgave her assailant, Alessandro, and said she wants him to be in heaven with her. Alessandro served 30 years in prison, was reconciled with Maria’s mother, became a lay Franciscan brother in a monastery. He stood beside Maria’s mother at Maria’s Canonization.
This story of ultimate healing is possible when we submit ourselves to God, when we allow God to enter our situation and let him heal our wounds. Our wounds are caused by the effects of original sin, which gives us this desire to reject him and choose something less. Yet, this can be healed when we allow God to heal us. He does this as he said in the First Reading by leading us to the wilderness and speaking to us tenderly. But this requires a response from us. We need to allow him into our lives.
The Gospel shows us Jesus has the power to raise the dead. There is always hope to even when there is no hope. God can give us new life when we allow him into our lives. God wants to show us his power and we see his power when we allow him to move in our lives. When he does, we will do what the Psalm today says: we will laud your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts.
Are you in a situation that seems hopeless? Is your back against the wall, with no escape? Are you struggling with sins of impurity that you cannot shake off? Do you want a new life but do not know how? Be like the the leader of the synagogue who approached Jesus and tells him his problem. Be like the woman who suffered for twelve years and was healed when she touched Jesus. Come to Jesus and you will hear him say: take heart, your faith has made you well.
This healing does not necessarily mean physical healing. This more important healing is our relationship with God. Other healing can be spiritual or emotional healing. God can heal you and God wants to heal you. Come to Jesus and pour out your heart to him.
Maria Gorretti was killed defended her purity. Today, many people struggle with chastity. Many are addicted to pornography. Pornography addiction destroys people’s lives. It destroys the person, it destroys families. Many struggle against it. If you have a pornography addiction, and you want to be healed of your addiction, turn to Jesus. Ask him to heal you. Ask Maria Gorretti to pray for you, so you can be healed by Jesus.
Lord, here is am. I have no hope. I have no life. There is no one to help me. I come to you and tell you I have no where to go but to you. So here I am. Take care of my life, of my fears, of my pain and wounds. Heal me Lord and make me whole. Enter my life and do as you will. St Maria Gorretti, pray for us.