Now in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate there is a pool, called in Hebrew Bethsatha, which has five porticoes. In these lay many invalids—blind, lame, and paralysed waiting for the stirring of the water; for an angel of the Lord went down at certain seasons into the pool, and stirred up the water; whoever stepped in first after the stirring of the water was made well from whatever disease that person had.
One man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been there a long time, he said to him, ‘Do you want to be made well?’ The sick man answered him, ‘Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; and while I am making my way, someone else steps down ahead of me.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Stand up, take your mat and walk.’ At once the man was made well, and he took up his mat and began to walk.
Now that day was a sabbath. So the Jews said to the man who had been cured, ‘It is the sabbath; it is not lawful for you to carry your mat.’ But he answered them, ‘The man who made me well said to me, “Take up your mat and walk.”’
Conversation: When you come towards the end of your time of prayer, talk to
Jesus about what has come up for you.
Imagine how he might reply.
A Prayer: End with a formal prayer, such as the Lord's Prayer/Our Father
4. “Sometimes we are tempted to find excuses and complain, acting as if we could only be happy if a thousand conditions were met.
To some extent this is because our ‘technological society has succeeded in multiplying occasions of pleasure, yet has found it very difficult to engender joy’.”
5. “An evangeliser must never look like someone who has just come back from a funeral!
Let us recover and deepen our enthusiasm, that ‘delightful and comforting joy of evangelising, even when it is in tears that we must sow…
And may the world of our time, which is searching, sometimes with anguish, sometimes with hope, be enabled to receive the good news not from evangelisers who are dejected, discouraged, impatient or anxious, but from ministers of the Gospel whose lives glow with fervour, who have first received the joy of Christ’.”
6. “Instead of seeming to impose new obligations, [Christians] should appear as people who wish to share their joy, who point to a horizon of beauty and who invite others to a delicious banquet.
It is not by proselytizing that the Church grows, but ‘by attraction’.”
Take time to pray with today's reading;
or you may like to ponder on the passage taken from a letter of Pope Francis called 'The Joy of the Gospel'.
What is important to Pope Francis