The faith of the Centurion

Fr Peter reads from the Gospel of Matthew (8: 5-17) in which we hear of the miracle when the Centurion pleads with Jesus for the healing of his servant who was paralyzed and in great pain. As we hear today’s Gospel, Fr Peter asks us to reflect on the message and be encouraged to know that God truly loves us.

Fr Peter says, we can only imagine the call of the Centurion to our Lord Jesus. The Centurion even knew who Jesus was, acknowledging his own unworthiness by saying those words, that we express before Holy Communion, ‘ I am not worthy to have you under my roof… just give the word and my servant will be cured’.

It is a beautiful way of expressing how worthy we are to have God in our lives and, yet, God invites us into that relationship. We also hear how such an event is no accident; we hear of the prophecy of Isaiah. These prophets were not fortunetellers; they were not predicting the future; they came with a message about the coming of the One, the Son of God; God who dwelt among us in the person of the Lord Jesus.

Whenever we go to Mass and receive Holy Communion, Fr Peters says, may we express our worthiness in the words of the Centurion as we welcome God into our life; and wherever we are, that God can truly encounter us in those moments when we are seeking guidance and direction to help us embark on the path that leads to eternal life.

Fr Peter says, let us truly immerse ourselves in this story yet again and, as we hear of the centurion pleading with Jesus, that we too are reaching out to God in a way that, yes, we are unworthy, but we want to welcome God into our life because we cannot live life without God. We depend on him to show us the way that leads to eternal life.