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 February 1st 2009 A.D. - 4th Sunday in Ordinary Time Mk1/21-28

Catholic Homilies

February 1st 2009 A.D.

Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time 

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Background:

Scripture: Mark 1:21-28

  There is considerable debate about whether the people whom Jesus healed were really possessed by the devil or were mentally disturbed. The debate is utterly beside the point. These individuals were deeply troubled and Jesus healed them. Jesus came to heal both body and soul. Most scripture scholars now agree that miracles were an important part of Jesusí ministry and of the memory of that ministry in the early church. We simply cannot abandon them to please those who say miracles are impossible. The precise explanation of how these healings were accomplished is another matter and perhaps one that is also beside the point. Jesus did not work miracles to prove anything. Rather they were signs that Godís healing love is at work in the world. 

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  Once upon a time there were some doctors who were discussing whether prayer helped their patients. Does it do any good, they asked, for people to pray for those who are sick? One group said it helps those who pray to feel that theyíre doing something for the sick person. But it really doesnít help the sick person at all. The other group said that they had the impression that prayer really had a positive effect on sick people. The first group said thatís scientifically impossible. So they decided to try a ďdouble blindĒ experiment on those who were recover from heart problems. They would have prayers said for some and not for the others to see what happened. The doctors didnít know who was chosen to be prayed for and the subjects of the prayers didnít know either. However a list of first names were given to those who were to do the praying. So neither the prayers or the prayees or the researchers know had been chosen to be the target of prayer. What happened? Those for whom prayers were said recovered more quickly. See said those who had argued that prayer worked; there are more things under heaven than science dreams of. (This is a true story about research, which is reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine, October 25/1999).

 

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See said those who had argued that prayer worked; there are more things under heaven than science dreams of. (This is a true story about research, which is reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine, October 25/1999)

Psalm 95:1-2,6-9

1 O sing to the LORD a new song; sing to the LORD, all the earth!
2 Sing to the LORD, bless his name; tell of his salvation from day to day.
6 Honor and majesty are before him; strength and beauty are in his sanctuary.
7 Ascribe to the LORD, O families of the peoples, ascribe to the LORD glory and strength!
8 Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name; bring an offering, and come into his courts!
9 Worship the LORD in holy array; tremble before him, all the earth!

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