Sunday, February 21, 2016

Maronite Year XXV

The reading for the Maronite Third Sunday of Lent consists of the interlinked tales of the raising of the daughter of Jairus and the healing of the hemorrhaging woman, so the day is usually called the Sunday of the Hemorrhaging Woman. The theme that links both stories, of course, is faith; and since all the Sundays of Lent in the Maronite calendar consider facets of our salvation, the day emphasizes the importance of faith to salvation.

Sunday of the Hemorrhaging Woman
2 Corinthians 7:4-11; Luke 8:40-56

Sometimes we cannot even cry out;
sometimes we do not even dare to beg.
Our sins ooze out,
our hearts tremble,
and we creep up to touch our Lord's hem,
hoping that then we will not be noticed.

Even a creeping faith may bring hope,
even a first step may bring repentance;
repentance saves,
hope strengthens us,
and healing may come from faith's mere touch,
for such is the sovereignty of our Christ.

You, O Lord our God, are our great shield;
You, O Lord Jesus, are our great reward.
Look on our faith,
heal all our sins,
undo the festering of our wounds,
pour your healing balm upon our sick hearts.

You are clothed with fire, feared by angels;
yet we dare creep to You for Your healing,
for You, O Word,
are become man,
that we may reach out to touch Your hem
and, unburned, be healed by Your great power.

You are all pure, and we are unclean,
but we cannot sully Your glory,
sunlight of truth,
You are all life, and we are like dead,
but by faith we may be raised to Your life.

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