Wisdom of Solomon 1:13-15, 2:23-24/Psalm 30/2 Cor.8:7-15/Mark 5:21-43
A miraculous healing; a miraculous raising from death… I’m not always quite sure what to make of these healing stories—sometimes they raise more questions than they answer. What did Jairus’s daughter die from the second time around? What was the final illness for the woman with the hemorrhage—something caused her eventual death, even though she had once been healed by Jesus. How many people did Jesus actually heal? Why didn’t he just waive his hand over the whole earth and heal all people everywhere? Why Jairus’s daughter and not his neighbor’s? What does it mean that Jesus can heal and sometimes does—and sometimes doesn’t ? Perhaps you’ve experienced healing in a way that you know was a special grace—it happens. But, as we all know, no one gets out of this alive. Even Lazarus, raised from the tomb, died again.
“Something strange is happening.”[i] Something strange is happening. We hear those words read at the mid day service here at the monastery on Holy Saturday at the culmination of Holy Week as we sit in this bare chapel wondering what is next. We have shouted our hosannas and screamed our crucify; we have been over powered by the scent of the nard used to anoint the feet of the Lord in that home at Bethany and we have shared in the meal of bread and wine and watched as our feet have been washed; we have followed the crowd as it made its way through Jerusalem on its way to Calvary and there we watched Him die. With the disciples we saw him hastily buried by Joseph and Nicodemus. And then we waited; lost, afraid, despairing and bewildered until we heard those first alleluias on Easter Day. Yes, something strange indeed is happening. And something strange continues to happen.
First there was word from two of the Mary’s that his body was missing and then the breathless Magdalene arrived to tell us that she has seen him alive. Peter and John confirmed this strange news and it was too wild a story to take it all in when suddenly Cleopas bust into the room breathless from his six mile walk telling us that they too had seen the Lord.