One Monk of the Order of Saint Benedict

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The Word of God and the Body of God reveal each other -- the homily worships both.

May 19, 2008

For Monday of the Seventh Ordinary Week of the Church Year

Mark 9:14-29

The father of an afflicted boy asks Jesus to open deeply for him and his son
The afflicted boy’s father said both that he believed and that he needed help to believe.
“I do believe. Help my unbelief!”
There are two things in that man’s words:
first, a profession of faith;
second, a prayer for help— a prayer addressed to Jesus— a prayer to Jesus because the spirit that held his boy could only be driven out by addressing prayer to God.
When the disciples of Jesus ask why they themselves were unable to free the boy from the unclean spirit, Christ says prayer is the only way to battle that kind spirit.
Faith in Jesus as God, and prayer to Jesus as God are necessary if we are to be free.
Because of Jesus, we believe in the final freedom of the body, the resurrection of the body, but we must pray to Jesus for that freedom.
The freedom he gives is also spiritual freedom that touches our feelings, our thinking, our choosing and doing.
Everything that is in us and everything that we are needs faith and prayer:
the choices we make;
the disciplines we apply in our intellectual life;
the way we experience and cultivate our emotions;
the way we live in and with our bodies.
In the end, the Father, by the Holy Spirit and in Christ, will reveal his freedom and glory in us.
He will raise us from the dead, and transfigure us through and through.
That is God’s plan from the beginning, since he made us in his own image.
Christ is the fullness and the fulfillment of that image— physically, emotionally, intellectually, willingly, obediently, actively, and spiritually.
We have come to his altar to tell him we believe, and to pray that he help our unbelief.
By his Holy Body and Blood may he free us fully and forever.

That God Be Glorified in All