Reflection for the Thirteenth Sunday of Ordinary Time, 2024 Year B

Reflection for the Thirteenth Sunday of Ordinary Time, 2024 Year B

Jul 1, 2024 | Reflections

Death and Life and the Necessity of Faith.

In Sunday’s readings speak of death and life and the necessity of faith.

The first reading teaches that death had no place in the initial plan of our Creator. Death is the result of sin. Death is a lack of something; it is the consequence of spiritual death caused by Original Sin and mortal sin. But the good news is that Jesus destroyed death on the Cross. It is no longer an event to fear, but rather it is the necessary step, from this world to the Heavenly Father.  In the second St Paul teaches that Our Lord saw our loss, as His loss and suffered and died that we may regain life.

Sunday’s Gospel describes two acts of desperation mixed with faith, that need a little encouragement.  Jairus, despite his position as ruler of the synagogue, throws himself at the Lord’s feet, begging for Him to heal her daughter who is at the point of death.

There was also a woman who spent every cent she had on trying to find a cure for her long illness consisting of a haemorrhage or flow of blood which had lasted for twelve years. This meant that according to the Jewish Law she was considered as unclean and was not permitted to worship in the Temple. In fact, anything or any person she touched was considered unclean. Thus, she had become a social outcast. This is why she comes up secretly to Jesus, placing all her hope on Him, believing that if she just touched his garment, she would be healed. Immediately when she touched it, she was totally healed. But Jesus knew someone had touched Him and received healing. The woman could not remain anonymous, but came forward and confessed what had happened. Then Jesus encourages her for her faith. 

In the meantime, word comes that Jairus’s daughter is dead. But Jesus gives encouragement to Jairus: 

Do not fear, only believe. 

So Jairus who had just witnessed the healing of the woman in the crowd, believes in Jesus. When they arrive at the Jairus’s house Jesus says to those who are weeping that the child is not dead, but asleep. For God, all who are dead, are merely asleep. Jesus would say the same of Lazarus, who was dead (cf. John 11:11).

The only real death is sin, which kills the divine life of the soul. So, for the believer, bodily death is like a sleep, from which we awake in God. Compared to mortal sin, death is temporary. Mortal sin, however, is the real death. If a Catholic were to fall into mortal sin, Confession is necessary before one can receive Holy Communion. Mortal sin is the greatest tragedy that can happen to a person. He or she is radically cut off from God, by the total loss of divine life in the soul. Whatever merits one has acquired through life are also lost and while in the state of serious sin, one is unable to acquire new merits. Mortal sin is a disorder greater than the most disastrous catastrophe that could lay waste the whole world, since the grace in a single soul is greater than the natural good of the whole universe (cf. Summa Theologiae, 1-2, 113, 9, 2).

In the world today there is a loss of the sense of sin and its seriousness. The Church has also been weakened by the sins of many members and by a general apostasy. As faithful members of the Church we should never be discouraged though, because discouragement comes from the devil. Instead, we should detest sin and work and pray all the more to help save the sinner. For God, never deserts us, even though many desert Him. He desires all to be saved. 

The Lord accompanies us and walks by our side as we journey through life. He and our Heavenly Mother hear every prayer we make, because prayer is infallible and is the great means of salvation.  We see this even in the Old Testament. God led the Chosen People to the Promised Land. But due to their stiff-necked disobedience, it would take forty years.  They didn’t have a GPS back then, but God provided a miraculous one. He would go before them as a pillar of smoke during the day and during the night, as a pillar of fire. When the pillar of smoke or fire stopped, they would make camp, arranging their tents around the special tent or tabernacle that contained the Ark of the Covenant. They would stay there until the pillar of smoke or fire began to move again. God also provided for their basic material needs with both manna and water, in a miraculous way.

God is with us, guiding us through our earthly pilgrimage. In the Gospel, Jairus threw himself at the Lord’s feet and the woman activated God’s power by touching His cloak. How can we touch His cloak? We do this when we approach the sacraments with faith. When we kneel before the Priest in Confession, we are like Jairus kneeling before Christ in Galilee. When we receive Jesus in Holy Communion with faith, we are like the woman with the haemorrhage. Let’s always receive the sacraments with great faith. Sin is the real evil. It harms the person who commits it.  One loses one’s peace of heart due to sin and this causes disharmony in family, amongst friends and weakens the whole Church. So, every sin has repercussions in the Church and in the lives of others.

Deliberate venial sins cause havoc in souls that are not struggling sincerely to avoid them. Let’s ask Our Lady to obtain for the gift of esteeming the life of the soul above all human goods, even that of bodily life itself. She will help us to have true contrition against our weaknesses and errors. Let’s make prayer such as the Holy Rosary an essential part of our daily spiritual exercises. Go to Confession at least monthly, try and attend weekday Mass as well as Sunday Mass and make an effort to spend a Holy Hour before our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. (There is a list to sign up on near the main doors of the Divine Mercy Shrine). Jesus is Emmanuel, truly with us above in the Sacrament of love, until the end of time itself. In order, to receive we must give generously of our time, talents and treasure. Jesus said: Give, and it will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. (Luke 6:38).

God won’t be outdone in generosity, So, let’s give God quality time in prayer, try to die more each day to our own selfish will, and pray and work to win souls for Christ. 


Praise be Jesus Christ, now and forever.