Miracle Makers

Jesus went through towns and villages with his disciples. He was also accompanied by some women of power and economic means,who supported financially his work. Among them were Mary Magdalen, Joanna and Suzanna. The narrative informs us that from Mary, seven demons had departed. Popular religious literature today has much to say about Mary, and she is a person who deserves close study for what she reveals to us about ourselves and our own discipleship. I see Mary as a woman whose “demons”, that is, whose illnesses were persistent, and had often to approach Jesus for healing. She seemed to have suffered from some form of chronic illness, repeatedly debilitating her, and so invoking healing. She must have been a very strong woman to have made the journeys with Jesus and his disciples, and I believe that standing with, walking alongside, Jesus, is a nurturing, healing and redemptive thing. Mary’s “chronic” illness reminds us that illness is sometimes the result of “chronos,” time. Time takes its toll on all, even on those closest to Jesus. On the other hand, Jesus is revealed as the transcendent presence of the divine in whose light and glory the disciples find rest and redemption. The divine, as transcendent presence, incorporates what is present, and what presents itself for incorporation, and discloses itself as the horizon of healing. The horizon, the meeting place of the sacred and the profane, the divine and the human, is not temporal. It transcends time. It is the point of eternity touching the hem of temporality, blessing time and redeeming time. Mary stands with Jesus at this horizon, and it is there that she is constantly and regularly “delivered” from her “demons”, that is, touched and healed by the divine presence and the divine hand. Mary’s recurrent illness and recurrent healing reminds us that the divine is the recurrent healing horizon, drawing us into itself, and delivering us as healed and redeemed.

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