Showing hospitality to others

Blog Published: November 29, 2022
By Sister Audra Turnbull, IHM
Jesus' Healing

Praying with the Sisters—November 28, 2022
This reflection was shared during our Praying With The Sisters live-streamed prayer on Facebook. A Nun’s Life was joined by guests Sister Audra Turnbull, IHM and Sister Erin Mcdonald, CSJ. Sister Audra is a member of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Monroe, MI and Sister Erin is a member of the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph.

(The video recording of our prayer can be found below the blog.)

Reflection on Matthew 8: 5-11

In today's Gospel Jesus is asked to heal the servant of a Roman centurion. The centurion acknowledged his privilege and power. The centurions were known for abusing this power over the Jewish inhabitants. Anyone representing the Romans was definitely not popular with Jesus’ peers. 

Audra TurnbullHowever, this man also acknowledges he’s not worthy of Jesus healing his servant but asks anyway. Jesus is ‘amazed’ at the man’s admission and agrees to heal the servant. 

In this first week of Advent, the Gospel stories are setting the stage for the coming of Jesus. The purpose of this particular story is to show us that anyone can come to Jesus for healing. I think we all have times we don’t feel worthy of asking for help but today's Gospel teaches us to ask anyway. It doesn’t matter what we’ve done in our past, we can be worthy of Jesus’s healing. It’s really difficult to ask for help especially when we’re in vulnerable situations. But today's gospel models for us that Jesus welcomes everyone.

Jesus is the model of radical hospitality. Who else can welcome lepers, a centurion, and a widow? Jesus only asks if one has faith that they can be healed. Nothing else. 

I think we can all think of people like that. People that just embody hospitality. For me, it’s a sister I lived with when I first joined the IMH. MaryAnn was known as a party nun. She invited people she didn’t often interact with. She's warm and funny. She accepts everyone for who they are. 

Who are some people that exude hospitality to you? 

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