Hope in Jesus
To come to know God, the true God, means to receive hope. To come to know Jesus the true Son of God means to receive hope. St Josephine Bakhita was kidnapped into slavery and sold over 5 times to different masters who beat her severely, but in the end received hope. She got to know God and his Son Jesus the true source of hope. In today’s Gospel the people of land around Gennesaret received hope when they recognized that it was Jesus who was getting off the boat. They had hope that He could heal them of all their sickness, if only they could touch the tassel on his cloak. The hope was so great that in every town or village he entered the people would lay down their sick in the marketplace and beg Him to heal them or to just touch the tassel on his cloak.
Today is the memorial of St. Josephine Bakhita, an African slave from Sudan, who was illegally kidnapped and sold into slavery at the age of 9. St. Josephine was beaten and treated cruelly almost her entire life as a slave. She like the people in the Gospel today found her hope in Jesus Christ. She found out that there is a God mightier than her owners. There is a God who loves her. There is a God who has a Son who was treated just as bad as she was. This Son even gave his life for us. She had a God who was waiting for her in heaven. She was so overwhelmed with hope that she couldn’t tell enough people about God she had found and wanted to show them the Hope she found in Him. St. Josephine Bakhita pray for us and let all the enslaved and suppressed in the world today, during this Black History month in America, remember you, the daughter of Sudan, and the hope you found in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen
Deacon Peter Smith serves at St. Mary’s/Holy Family Parish in Alabama, a religion teacher at Holy Family Cristo Rey Catholic High School in Birmingham, and a member of our Passionist Family.