We often use the phrase, “History repeats itself”. In today’s reading, we hear a perfect example of that. The disease of leprosy was a terrible affliction: the whole body could be covered with sores and parts of the flesh on extremities of the body, like fingers and toes would begin to wither away. It was also very contagious, so people were forced to move from their family home and seek out an existence alone or in a leper colony. You also had to depend on family and friends to provide food and the essentials of living.
Do you see any similarities as a result of Covid-19 in today’s pandemic? Yes, there is serious illness and death; there is the contagious and so the need for social distancing; there is the isolation, and loss of jobs and livelihood.
This is the scene that Jesus found himself in too. The Gospel has the same story, one leper being cleansed. There is also in our Gospels, the cure of ten lepers. Jesus came to bring healing and wholeness into people lives. That work still needs to be continued today. This is why we are so thankful to all medical staff and all involved in bringing care to the sick. We hear more and more for the need of psychological support to combat loneliness and isolation. As I keep saying we need patience as never before. We are learning all the time and we see that circumstances change almost on a daily basis.
RETIREMENT: Every priest is required by Canon Law to send in his resignation to his bishop in the year of his 75years of age. I’ve done so the week before last. I did indicate that I would be happy to continue for a while, as long as my health holds up and if it were the Cardinal’s wish that I continue as Parish Priest. He responded and was delighted that I would continue and that the situation would be reviewed.
So for better or worse, I am to continue as your Parish Priest. Please God, my health will continue. Please pray for me as I will for you.