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Sermon Sunday June 30, 2024 Proper 8
Lessons: Lamentations 3:22-33
Psalm 30
2 Corinthians 8:7-15
Mark 5:21-43
In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy
Spirit. Amen.
Healing. Now that is a word that we hear often these days.
We hear about healing of the nation, healing of our
divisions, healing of our hearts and souls. Today’s Gospel
from Mark tells of two events of healing that Jesus does for
two very different people. We encounter Jairus, an important
official whose daughter is gravely ill. He is not too proud to
humble himself and beg Jesus to come to his house and heal
his daughter. As Jesus, the apostles, and the jostling crowd
move along, a woman who is at her wits end because she has
been ill for twelve years with a hemorrhage, stealthily
approaches Jesus and wishes only to touch his cloak because
she believes she will be healed this way. She is at her wits
end, still ill after spending all her money on doctors who
could do nothing for her. She touches Jesus’ robe, and lo and
behold, she is healed!

Jesus know this because he feels power going out of him. He
seeks out the woman, stopping the entourage and the show
heading to Jairus’ house, the seemingly more important of
the encounters. Yet Jesus takes the time to elevate the
woman, to let it publicly be known that she has been healed,
to return her to the fabric of society, because she was most
likely considered an outcast. Jesus heals her body, but also
heals her mind and soul.
However, this event seems to delay, and put a stop, at least
for a time, to the trek to heal the daughter of Jairus, an
innocent twelve-year-old girl. And then, the unthinkable
happens. Some messengers arrive saying the little girl has
died. It’s too late Jesus. Don’t bother going to the house
anymore.
Jesus, however, defies this message and forges ahead, and
heals the little girl by raising her from the dead.
So, what does it mean to be healed? When we ask Jesus to
heal someone, are we only talking about a restoration of
physical health? Let’s imagine that healing involves so
much more. It surely can involve a physical healing like we
see with Jairus’ daughter. But healing in many other ways
can take place, even if there is no alleviating a physical

condition. Healing is wholeness. A healing of spirit, a
healing emotionally, a healing psychologically, are all a
necessary part of being whole, even if our bodies may still
not be cured.
I have some personal experience with this type of healing
and would like to tell you a bit about it. I was newly
returned to the United States.
I was discombobulated. I didn’t fit in anywhere. I had just
spent the better part of ten years out of the country and
didn’t recognize the place where I was born anymore. There
were huge Hummers driving around on the streets, and I was
terrified of them because where I had lived for the past ten
years, those were the vehicles that the drug lords used to get
around in.
I had been a substitute teacher for a week upon my return to
the U.S., and the entire Freshman class hated my guts
because I called them to accountability. I had gotten a kid
expelled, and she threatened me. I was lost, lonely, and
afraid. I cried myself to sleep at night, and the days weren’t
much better. I loved my family, but they had no idea really
about the things that I had seen, the places where I had been,

and the things that I had done. I missed my friends in
Mexico, Venezuela, and Spain.
I remember wondering where was God in all of this, because
I had just spent ten years of my life as a missionary in
service to that same God, who I felt had now abandoned me.
I had to work, but hated the job that I had gotten, selling an
herbal weight loss product in a kiosk in a mall, because I
couldn’t go back to teaching.
One night it was so bad that I just cried out to Jesus to help
me. And boy, I have never had a prayer answered so
quickly. Within a matter of seconds, a deep peace settled
over me, and I stopped crying. I just knew that everything
would eventually be okay. It didn’t mean that everything
would be unicorns and rainbows, but I finally felt the
presence of God, and I knew that God would be with me no
matter what.
I didn’t experience a physical healing like the two people we
see in today’s Gospel passage, but it was a healing
nonetheless. It was one of the most profound encounters I
have ever had with Jesus. It was amazing, powerful and life-
giving. It didn’t matter that my faith was strong or weak. It
didn’t matter that I doubted or believed. It didn’t matter that

I touched Jesus or that he touched me. I felt Jesus’ power,
and it amazed me. I had just experienced the love, the hope,
and the peace of Jesus.
Well, isn’t that just hunky dory, I can hear some folks
thinking. You got healed just like that! But what about all
those people who pray like you prayed, Rev. Katie, or like
Jairus and the woman with the hemorrhage prayed, and
didn’t receive an instantaneous physical healing, or didn’t
even receive a spiritual or emotional healing? Are you
telling us that these folks don’t have enough faith to be
healed?
Good heavens, no! God’s healing may take place through
many different means. Healing can take place through
prayer and the cry in the night like I experienced. But
healing often takes place through the knowledge of a
physician or the care of a nurse. Healing may take place
through a group such as AA. Healing may take place
through a conversation with a close friend or with a stranger.
Healing may take place through the care and affection of
one of our fur companions. Healing may take place through
book that we read, or a movie that we see, or a video that we
watch. Healing may take place by immersing ourselves in

the beauty of God’s nature. God uses all of these means and
more to help heal us.
Well, that’s fine and dandy I can hear some folks saying, but
what if those types of intervention neither heal us physically,
nor spiritually, nor emotionally? What about someone who
has ALS or a disease that hurts so severely that they can
barely move around or even get out of bed? What about your
family that rejects you and tells you that you are going to
hell because of your sexual orientation? What about the loss
of our beloved fur companion that happened suddenly and
from out of nowhere? What about the sudden loss of our
dear friend who brought joy to many people through his
cartoons and art work? What about those who are devastated
by war or the person suffering from a neurological disease
that steals their sight and ability to speak?
I am going to make a confession. I don’t know why some
people go through horrendous situations who can’t cope, or
cope through choices that are detrimental to them, who can’t
seem to be healed, as much as they want to be healed. What
I do know is that we follow Jesus who was betrayed,
abandoned, whipped and beaten, had a crown of thorns put
on his head, was stripped of his clothing, was forced to carry

the means by which he was executed, who stumbled and
fell, was mocked, was nailed to the cross, cried out in
desperation to God, and seemingly was abandoned even by
God.
But Jesus was “healed” by God through new life in his
resurrection. And we are co-heirs with Jesus in this. God is
with us every step of the way, and somehow, we can have
new life, somehow with Jesus, somehow with God. And St.
Paul tells us nothing can separate us from God—not hunger,
not fear, not the depths, and not even death. God is with us
every step of the way.
And let’s not forget that God uses us, yes little old us, to be
the instruments by which we can be healed. We can keep
that in mind during these next few months which are sure to
be difficult for our country as we approach the elections in
November. Let God use us as a means by which healing
love can be a part of our everyday interactions with our
family, our friends, and our neighbors.
Let us end with this prayer from Praying Our Goodbyes
which may help us to keep God’s healing in the forefront of
our minds:
Do I know Jesus?

I feel very lost.
Are you my guide,
The shepherd always there?
How do I know the way
When I’ve never been there?
Is it that you are with me,
That you make the way known
In the tiny whispers of life,
Footstep by footstep,
Bit by bit,
On the long journey of life? Amen.