1.1Sm 16: 1b.6-7.10-13a
2. Eph5: 8-14

                  " A Journey from blindness to sight."

A woman once approached a priest and confided, " I fell guilt, Father". This morning before coming to Church, I committed the sin of pride. I sat for an hour in front of my mirror admiring my beauty." Will I have to do penance? The priest looking at her replied: " Not at all, my child. You only have to do penance for a sin; not an imagination."

In the gospel we encounter people who, like that woman are blind( read Jn 9,1-41). They are two kinds: One who is physically blind and people who are spiritually blind; one wants to see and people who refuse to see. Of the latter Jesus, who's referring to the Pharisees, says, " They have eyes but do not see." These  self-righteous religious leaders could not see because of hubris, an extreme form of pride, which thinks it knows all the answers.

Dear brothers and sisters, the gospel of today begins with an account on the encounter  of Jesus with the man born blind. The blind man recognized people by their voices only. Now with Jesus 'healing  on him, he was able to see what human faces look like. While some people have recognized him, it is surprising that some of his neighbors did not wish him well of his cure.
Let's ask ourselves that who were these enemies of Jesus? They were the Pharisees who distrusted the marvelous deed that Jesus had done to the man who was born blind. Since Jesus did the healing on a Sabbath, they judged him as man " who is not from God." Jesus must have realized that it was easier to cure the man who was physically blind than the Pharisees who are " spiritually" blind. He has a longer and harder struggle with the Pharisees who are sick of spiritual blindness.
What can we learn from the gospel?

Aren't we in some ways like the blind Pharisees? For instance in arguments we insist we are right when it is clearly  the opposite; all because we think it's weakness to yield or accept the truth. Or, there are husbands and wives who choose  to remain in the dark about what's wrong with their marriage instead of seeking help or counseling. 

First, we can associate ourselves with the Pharisees whose stubbornness of heart precludes them from seeing the truth. This happens in ordinary relationships, friendship for instance. Most people do not want to see the hard truth, for some reasons. Some fail to see the truth because of fear that they might hurt their friends or family members. Our deliberate blindness does not actually help the relationship, but it does enrich the relationship. Why? Because we allow people to live in lies; not in the truth. In these cases, we are in need of the healing grace of God.

Second we can associate ourselves with the man born blind. It is interesting to note that the vision, recognition or knowledge of Jesus did not happen overnight. In other words, he did not recognize Jesus immediately. When Jesus asked him whether he believes in the Son of Man, his reply was, " Who is he, sir, that I may believe in him?

On the other hand, our journey of faith is also comparable to the journey of the man born blind. First, he knew of Jesus as a " man Jesus" Next, he called Jesus as a prophet. Lastly, he addressed Jesus as Lord. Thus there is the progress in his knowledge of God. In comparison, we also had been born blind until we were baptized. When we were baptized, our knowledge of God was only insignificant. But the Church expects to grow while we grow older. It is expected that while we grow in age, we should also grow in our " seeing" or knowledge of God. Thus, there should be progress and development  in our understanding and knowledge of God. We must not stop exploring the depth and the width of the knowledge of God.

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Chapisha Maoni