In this video, Metropolitan Silouan talks about our spiritual infirmities and the healing of the woman who was bent over (27th Sunday after Pentecost). Metropolitan Silouan (Moussi) of Byblos, Botris and dependencies (Lebanon) served as the Metropolitan of Buenos Aires and All Argentine from 2006 to 2018.
Video source: Saint Nicholas Antiochian Orthodox Cathedral – Ballouneh, Lebanon, November 20th, 2021
We hear this Gospel reading [Luke 13:10-17].
Can you imagine with me that there was a woman who was bent over for 18 years like this? And this is how she sees people… And this is how she speaks with people… And this is how she lives… 18 years!
We are all like this woman, 18 years in this state, 20 years in this state, 40 years in this state, without Christ.
You see there’s a difference, excuse me to say this… The shape of a human and the meaning of his name in Greek is “ánthropos” (άνθρωπος) which means he who looks forward, who looks straight within his/her level. Only animals keep looking toward the ground all the time.
Jesus spoke to the Pharisees, the scribes, and the indignant ruler of the synagogue. How Jesus heals this woman on Sabbath and how people come to Jesus to receive healing on Sabbath. He said to them: does not each of you on the Sabbath water your donkey? Where does the donkey look? Always downward, can’t look upward.
See what happens to this woman… She was made straight and glorified God.
Is not this what we do in the Church here and now? All week we are bent over with thoughts, problems, passions, and sins. We come to the church, stand straight, and glorify God. So she was made straight and gave glory to God. What does Sabbath mean? Isn’t it the human’s dedication of this day to worship God? This woman was like this all the time. And I insist on showing you the position. 18 years in this position… Humiliated in front of people and in front of God and in front of herself, broken… could not change her reality.
And thus if we keep looking at our reality in our home, our country, and our church then we are like this woman who was bent over. Nothing will change, we will keep grumbling and complaining. And we will never know that we have a Church where we can be made straight and glorify God.
I don’t know if the idea is clear. This woman surprises us and tells us: “Do you want to keep being like me or become like me? Keep being like me as I was before? Or become like me, to what I became?”
This is the difference in Christian life. And thus she stood on Sabbath and glorified God, whereas before she wasn’t able to glorify God. Jesus said to her: “you are loosed from your infirmity” He freed her. Don’t we all need this freedom?
Don’t we need peace inside of us? That freedom to glorify God in every situation. Of course, we need. Our people are very tired and burdened, and suffering a lot Jesus is performing this same miracle for us, not only for one person, but for many people.