Since The Invitation comes out this week, my updates are in that letter. Here I stick to the reflection on this weekend’s scriptures:
In both the first reading and the Gospel, the only son of a widow is brought back to life and returned to her. It is hard for us to understand the significance of this because of cultural differences. In that culture a woman had NO rights. If she did not have a husband or a son to protect her, she was completely vulnerable, right down to someone taking away her land. A widow without a son is a symbol for complete vulnerability.
Notice that the woman didn’t do anything: Jesus took the initiative. He saw her in her sorrow, realized her complete vulnerability, and his heart was moved to pity.
That is how it is with us. The Lord sees our need; He sees our vulnerability. And He reaches out, taking the initiative. We only have to recognize and accept His help. Let us pray for each other and especially those most vulnerable, that they may recognize the Lord reaching out to them. And know what? Maybe He will use us to reach out!
-- Paul James Portland, SDS