From Mark 1: 40 – 45 we read:
“Moved with pity Jesus reached out his hand and touched him (the leper) and said to him, I do choose, be made clean.” Jesus, in his compassion broke the law (as stated in the first reading) by touching an unclean person, an outcast.
Who are the outcasts in our lives? Is it those who we feel just don’t fit in? Is it someone who does not agree with us, so we push them away? Might it be a homeless person that we avoid because they are not clean?
Lent begins on February 18th. It might be a good time for each of us to think about who we do not want to associate with, and try to reach out as Jesus did. In the words of the poet, Miller Williams:
“Have compassion for everyone you meet,
even if they don’t want it. What seems conceit,
bad manners, or cynicism is always a sign
of things no ears have heard, no eyes have seen.
You do not know what wars are going on
down there where the spirit meets the bone.”