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Association of the Miraculous Medal
Gospel Reflections for March 26

Besides her great privilege of being the Mother of God, Mary was also her Son’s first disciple. She is often called the Model, or Exemplar of the Church. Following her example, we walk with her through the Gospels as we reflect on her response to God in her life.

March 26, 2017 —Fourth Sunday of Lent

John 9:1-41
 Father Oscar Lukefahr, C.M.

“Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” The apostles bring up one of life’s hardest questions: Why are there birth defects? Why is there suffering?

The people of Jesus’ time believed that God was directly responsible for everything. If someone jumped off a building, God made him hit the ground. If people were in pain, God caused their suffering and must have had a good reason. That’s why the apostles presumed that the man born blind was being punished for sin. They were wrong, but we can make the same mistake. If something bad happens, we say, “What did I do to deserve this?” We may understand that someone jumping off a building is killed because of gravity, but we might want to blame God when things go wrong for us.

God gave people freedom to choose so they could love. God doesn’t take back that freedom when it is misused. As a result, bad things can happen to innocent people. Perhaps the blind man was born that way because some ancestor had drunk too much alcohol and damaged the family’s genetic patterns.

So Jesus says that neither the man nor his parents had sinned. The blindness is not punishment, but that “the works of God might be made visible.” God did not cause the blindness. Rather, God was on the side of the blind man, waiting to help through a miracle of restoring his sight. And the works of God were “made visible through him.”

Jesus often restores sight today through physicians. Many of us have had vision restored through cataract surgery or glaucoma medications. The works of God are made visible ... but we still need eyes of faith. It was wonderful that Jesus restored physical sight to a blind man. It was even more wonderful that Jesus gave a blind man the spiritual vision to know him as “Son of Man,” as Savior. In this Lenten season, may we see Jesus as clearly as did the man born blind when he said, “I do believe, Lord,” and worshiped him.

             Read last week's reflection.