Homily for the Memorial of Saint Ambrose, B.D (7th December, 2015)
(Monday of the Second Week of Advent (II)) on the Gospel and the Memorial
Ps 84:9-14 (R. Is 35:4)
Saint Ambrose was born about 339 at Trier and was elected Bishop when he was still a catechumen. He accepted the position after hesitation. Ambrose became a famous preacher and defender of the faith. He received Saint Augustine into the Church. He fought paganism and also protected the Church against political power. Saint Ambrose was a Christian bishop of great faith and energy.
Topic: Your sins are forgiven.
Jesus was teaching in today’s gospel when some men brought to Him a paralyzed man. They let the man down through the roof because the crowd made it impossible to pass through the door. Seeing their faith Jesus said to the paralyzed man “My Friend, your sins are forgiven you” (Lk 5:20). Although the scribes and the Pharisees questioned in their ignorance but the paralyzed man so much needed the forgiveness of his sins.
Based on the Old Testament, the Jews believed that bodily diseases are connected to sin. Hence, Jesus’ disciples asked him of the man blind from birth: “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents...?” (Jn 9:2). And for the Pharisees he was born entirely in sins, cf. Jn 9:34. Unfortunately, the main effect of sin we ought to be afraid of is not bodily ailments, because ultimately sin leads to death, cf. Prov 12:28; Matt 10:28.
Sin has paralyzed us in various ways, cf. Jn 8:34. So as we prepare for Christ we should remember that sacramental confession is very important. Saint Ambrose readmitted the Roman Emperor Theodosius I to the sacraments after some months of penance. Again, Saint Ambrose hesitated before accepting the bishopric but he turned out to be a veritable instrument in the hand of God. In the same vein, you might have your reasons why sacramental confession is not important or should not be now. But I assure you that Jesus Christ Himself is waiting for you to come and be healed because you are His friend, cf. Jn 15:15.
Bible Reading: Jn 20:19-23.
Thought for today: Christ is waiting for you to come.
Let us pray: Lord, forgive us all our sins as we approach your throne of mercy – Amen.
Saint Ambrose – Pray for us.
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