Voices ever ancient, ever new. Wednesday-AdventOne-2013.

“Great crowds came to him, having with them the lame, the blind, the deformed, the mute, and many others. They placed them at his feet, and he cured them” (Matthew 15:30)

Origen of Alexandria offers the following insight on this verse from today's Gospel:

“Again Jesus went up on the mountain where he sat down. Not only people who were healthy but also those suffering from various disorders went up on the mountain where Jesus was sitting. Think of this mountain to which Jesus went up and sat as the church. It has been set up through the word of God over the rest of the world, and all sorts of people come to it. To this assembly have come not only the disciples, as if they were leaving behind the multitudes, as they did in the case of the Beatitudes. Rather, there are great crowds here, many of whom are deaf or suffer from many afflictions. Look at the crowds who come to this mountain where the Son of God sits. Some of them have become deaf to the things that have been promised. Others have become blind in soul, not looking toward the true light. Others are lame and not able to walk according to reason. Others are maimed and unable to work profitably. Each of these who are suffering in soul from such things go up along with the multitudes into the mountain where Jesus sits.

Some who do not draw near to the feet of Jesus are not healed. But those who are brought by the multitude and cast at his feet are being healed. Even those who come only to the edges, just the extremities of the body of Christ, who feel themselves unworthy to obtain such things, are being healed. So now you come into the congregation of what is more commonly called the church.

See the catechumens? They are, as it were, cast in the far side or back of those who are the extreme end of the body, as if they were coming merely to the feet of the body of Jesus—the church. They are coming to it with their own deafness and blindness and lameness and crookedness. In time they will be cured according to the Word. Observing this you would not be wrong in saying that these people have gone up with the multitudes into the church, up to the mountain where Jesus sits, and have been cast at his feet and are being healed. And so the multitudes are astonished at beholding the transformations that are taking place. They behold those who are being converted from such great evils to that which is so much better.” (Commentary on Matthew, 11)

Prepare our hearts, we pray, O Lord our God,
by your divine power,
so that at the coming of Christ your Son
we may be found worthy of the banquet of eternal life
and merit to receive heavenly nourishment from his hands.
Who lives and reigns with You
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Glory to You Father, Son and Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen. Alleluia!