Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Lent

The love is generosity

After this, there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. Now there is in Jerusalem at the Sheep (Gate) a pool called in Hebrew Bethesda, with five porticoes. In these lay a large number of ill, blind, lame, and crippled. One man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been ill for a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be well?” The sick man answered him, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; while I am on my way, someone else gets down there before me.” Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your mat, and walk.” Immediately the man became well, took up his mat, and walked … Jn 5,1-9

Once upon a time, on the train, there was the nice habit to make available the sitting places to the elderly people. Today, it is almost totally no longer in use. Indeed, when the train stops at the station you see now the young  people running up to fill the few seats available and the elderly, who would need it, but do not have their quickness, are almost always forced to make the trip by standing up. This is what happened since long time to the paralytic man of the today reading. There was, in fact, a legend in Jerusalem: when the waters of the pool of Siloam, called Bethesda in Hebrew, rippled a bit, it was assumed that an angel was stirring the waters and that the first person entering inside would have been healed from all the ills which he brought. That paralyzed, poor fellow, had tried since long time to arrive first, but, because of his disability, he never succeeded and no one cared to help him. Jesus passes by, sees, understands his drama and says: “Do you want to be well?”. The sick man answered him: “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up”. Jesus then is moved to compassion and instantly he healed him. That of the pool of Siloam was just a belief and the first person who entered into when the water rippled probably did not heal, but how would have been nice if someone had stopped all the others and would have said: “Let’s merge the paralytic into the pool”. This is what happened in the train a few days ago, on the run from Saronno to Milan. A young man, who got on quickly, was about to sit in a seat, but, having realized that an elderly woman was approaching the seat, said: “Please, madam, sit down here”. If Jesus would have been present, he would have multiplied the number of seats and there would have been a seat for both, but the act has increased the joy of everyone present.

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