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The Identity Jesus Gave Me

5th pascal sunday Acts 16.16-34 John 9.1-41 (The Man Born Blind)

Christ is risen. Christos voskress.

Even though we are all, or almost all, enlightened by the grace of the sacrament of baptism, each one of us is fundamentally blind from birth, even until today. Indeed, let us

be in fear of the last words Jesus speaks in today’s Gospel: “If you

say: ‘I see’, your sin remains”. The re-creation Jesus comes to live

on earth is not an event singled out in our history. The re-creation

Jesus comes to live on earth is an absolute reality belonging to the

present moment. Today the blind man manifests a journey open to us.

In this journey, Jesus beautifully identifies us to himself. He says:

“We must work the works of God”. Today Jesus puts that earth, "adamah"

in Hebrew, with which He has formed Adam on my eyes and asks me to go

bathe in the pool of Siloam. Let us not be under the judgment of God,

as in Chapter 8 of the prophet Isaiah, where God says: “This people

has rejected the waters of Siloam that flow gently.”

The waters of Siloam were used for the cleansing of the Temple utensils. We are most

precious utensils, created for worship in the Temple. Our most

difficult work, as precious utensils, is engaging with courage and

perseverance in the same fight in between light and darkness as the

blind man of today’s gospel. When the powers of darkness are seeking

for accusations to condemn Jesus, they ask the blind man biased

questions, they ask: “Are you the blind one from birth?” Our blind man

beautifully answers with two words: “I am”. The same words “I am” that

Jesus repeats all along the Gospel of St John. “I am” defines Jesus’

own identity. In our fight in between light and darkness, we are to

repeat those two words “I am”, meaning “I have no other identity than

the one Jesus gives me”. We are not to enter in the game of the powers

of darkness that seek to entice us, but, like our blind man, let us

stick to certainty about the graces we have received. In the heart of

today’s gospel, there is a victory of darkness over light in the

parents of the blind man. Out of fear they let darkness rule them. In

the roots of our being there are also victories of darkness over

light, there is also the rule of darkness over light. Each time I say:

“I am awful” or each time I submit to any negative thought about my

situation, present or past, or to any negative thought about a brother

or sister around me, these are all victories of darkness over light.

But today’s gospel calls us to never accept such defeats to be the end

word. As for our blind man, I need to recognize weaknesses in the

games of the powers of darkness, they look for more than their

victories of the past, their real goal is to weaken my present faith

in the touch of God I have received in Christ Jesus, they say about

Jesus: “He is defiling the holiness of the Sabbath day”. They are

distorting God’s intentions. What is the true way of glorifying God?

It is to hear Jesus come to me and ask me: “Do you believe in the Son

of man?” Like the blind man, I am to dialogue with Jesus to find the

answer, and ask Jesus: “And who is he that I believe in him?” Then

Jesus repeats to me his two precious words: “I am, I am he who

delivers you of your blindness, I am he whom you see”. True worship

comes as a fruit of this whole experience. Jesus has come first to

meet me and invite me to his work of recreating me. Immediately, Jesus

asks me to be a soldier engaged with him in his difficult fight for

light to gain victory over darkness. In the midst of this fight, let

me not lose that I have behind me that Jesus has already come to me

and touched me with his grace, and that he will come again to perfect

in me his work of recreation. Jesus is leading me in a journey from

darkness to light, from death to life. This is what we celebrate

during the Pascal Season. In honor of this last Sunday of the Pascal

Season, let us now repeat three times our faith that Jesus leads us

from darkness to light, from death to life. Christ is risen. Christ is

risen. Christ is risen.

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