The Fourth Sunday of Lent: The Man Born Blind
Meditations and Prayers for the Fourth Week of Lent: A Cycle and RCIA
by Victor Hoagland, C.P.
This is a dramatic gospel, not only because of the miracle, but also because of the heated exchanges and clever dialogue that follow it. Besides Jesus and his disciples, the blind man himself, his parents and neighbors and a divided group of Pharisees all interact vigorously in the story.
this blind man did not approach Jesus. Rather, Jesus approached him.
And remarkably, the miracle did not just restore the man’s sight. Blind
from birth, he never before had the power to see.
represent those who can do nothing for themselves? Nothing at all, except
wait for the power of God?
At the sight
of the woebegone beggar, Jesus’ disciples wondered: did he do something
to deserve it? Some sin he or his parents had committed?
replied. “He was born blind so that God’s power might be displayed in
It was Jesus’ message always: God’s power belongs to the poor. Scarcely using that
power for himself, he brought Good News to them. God’s power — healing,
restoring, creating — belonged to the blind man and others like him.
And so he spent himself for them.
So too he
advised his disciples “to carry on while daylight lasts the work of
him who sent me.”
You must not pass by the poor or only speculate about them. Work for
their good so that the power of God may come upon them. And the power
of God will come upon you too, for the poor will bless you with a blessing
found nowhere else.
light of the world,
why were you born,
and why did you die
in such obscurity?
Bethlehem was hardly a shining place,
hardly a burning stand
for Light come into the world.
Was not Calvary too
an ending place
for life and light;
And would not a cross
in the afternoon sky,
turn all eyes away?
did your eyes turn away too?
Or were you
so accustomed to the dark
as to see what others could not see?
it was not long ago,
Someone seeing you all in darkness
touched your eyes
and told you to wash
until you saw God’s glory
shining through your beggar’s clothes.
And you believed,
no one could stop you,
or explain it all away,