Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time – Year B

Albert P. MacPherson O.S.A.
St. Augustine Friary
Villanova, Pennsylvania

Readings
Jer 31:7-9
Ps 126:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 6
Heb 5:1-6
Mk 10:46-52

On this 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time in our liturgical year and in our troubled world, with predictions of possibly even harder times to come, we too live in Hope like we see in Jeremiah 31, where the exiles of 721 B.C. hoped to return to a restored Kingdom of David. “The Lord has delivered his people, the remnant of Israel…They departed in tears, but I will console them and guide them, I will lead them to brooks of water, on a level road so that none shall stumble.”

The theological virtue of Hope, which is not simply a wish, is a confident expectation of God’s help in attaining eternal salvation based on God’s promises and love for us.

We Hope in Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, the “high priest…taken from among men and made their representative before God to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins…It was not Christ who glorified himself in becoming high priest but the Father who said to him, ‘You are my son, this day I have begotten you,’ and ‘You are a priest forever according to the Order of Melchizedek.’”

Our Holy Father, Saint Augustine, bishop of Hippo and great Doctor of the Church said: “Hope has two beautiful daughters; their names are Anger and Courage, Anger at the way things are, and Courage to see that they do not remain as they are.”

Pope Francis echoed Saint Augustine when he said, “Hope would have us recognize that there is always a way out, that we can always do something to solve our problems.”

In today’s gospel, the blind man Bartimaeus (“son of Timaeus”), had great Hope when he cried out to Jesus of Nazareth, “Son of David have pity on me.” Jesus said to him in reply: “What do you want me to do for you?” “Master I want to see.” Jesus told him, “Go your way, your faith has saved you.” Immediately, he received his sight and followed him on the way.

The Blessed Virgin Mary, the mother of Jesus, and our spiritual mother encourages us to Hope. On September 25, the visionary in Medjugorje, Marija, reported the following message: “Dear children! Pray, witness and rejoice with me because the Most High continues to send me to lead you on the way of holiness. Be aware, little children, that life is short, and eternity is waiting for you to give glory to God with your being with all the saints. Little children, do not worry about earthly things, but long for Heaven. Heaven will be your goal and joy will begin to reign in your heart. I am with you and bless all of you with my motherly blessing. Thank you for having responded to my call.” She also said, “If you knew how much I love you, you would cry with joy.”

Augustine says: “We must extend ourselves toward the measure of Christ so that when he comes he may fill us with his presence. Then we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.” Our Saint Augustine also said, “To fall in love with God is the greatest of all romances, to seek him is the greatest adventure, and to find him is the greatest human achievement.”