Jesus said to the man with the paralyzed hand,
“Stand here in the center.”
Today’s reflection on the Gospel in Daily Gospel 2013 highlights the action of Jesus calling the man with the paralyzed hand into the center of the synagogue assembly.
How out of place? We put the deformed and the poor at the margins of society and our gatherings. Society looks down on them and wants to keep them at a distance.
We, in contrast to Jesus, put those with power, prestige, and wealth at the center – even of our church assemblies.
But Jesus puts the sick man at the center of the assembly.
As Fr. Paulson Veliyannoor writes in Daily Gospel 2013:
He wants the marginalized to be in the center, for his Kingdom shall be organized around such people – the weak, the sinful, and the powerless.
Around whom is your life organized? What kind of people are at the center of your life choices?
Note on translations: The Greek, Latin, and many Spanish and English translations translate Jesus’ admonition as I have used it from the Christian Community Bible. However, both the New American Bible and the New Revised Standard Version translate it as “Come up here before us” or “Come forward,” hiding, I believe, the actual sense of the Greek, ἔγειρε εἰς τὸ μέσον. which means “Rise up, come, get up, stand up in the middle, the center.” That’s why I often the Greek and check several translations as part of my daily reading of the Gospel.