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Thursday, February 9, 2017

Bishop Barron's Daily Gospel Reflection February 9, 2017

Your daily Gospel reflection...
Thursday, February 9, 2017
5th Week in Ordinary Time, Year I
Mark 7:24-30
Friends, our Gospel for today, the story of Jesus’ conversation with the Syro-Phoenician woman, is one of those famously problematic passages in the New Testament. This poor woman, a Canaanite, a foreigner, comes forward and tells Jesus of her daughter who is troubled by a demon and the Lord just ignores her. When she persists, Jesus says, “I have come only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” When she prostrates herself at his feet, Jesus says, “It is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs.”

Of course, the woman gets off one of the best one-liners in the Scriptures, almost all of which otherwise belong to Jesus himself: “Please, Lord, for even the dogs eat the scraps that fall from the table of their masters. At which point, Jesus praises her for her faith and cures her daughter.

What’s going on here is really interesting and provocative. The Syro-Phoenician woman is being invited into the life of discipleship, into the following of Jesus. She is resisted, not because Jesus is having a bad day, but because he wants the strength of her faith to show itself.

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