Lenten Sunday of the Canaanite Woman
Scripture readings prescribed the for this Sunday by the Church
Acts 4: 1-12, Romans 7:14-25, St. Matthew 15: 21- 31
The reading from the book of Acts speak boldly the witness of the Church of healing through Jesus Christ, the corner stone who is proclaimed as “ Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved”
The reading from the letter to Romans by St. Paul confesses his humanity and shortcomings and hope that remains in the Church for mankind created in God’s image. The Church, as for St. Paul, has for all eternity someone to call upon amidst of Sin which is what we do and not what we are “O wretched man that that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? I thank God- through Jesus Christ our Lord! “
The Gospel from the book of St. Mathew of the faith of the Canaanite woman has a special meaning for me as being one of the first readings that I exercised to consciously listen in Church many years back as a student in Bangalore, India.
The Canaanite woman realizes the need to not feel humiliated ,but Knowing, even before the writings of epistles came to us, that the One before her , to whom she must plead for mercy in repentance is not a mere man but He who is God . The reading continues with our Lord healing multitudes. We find no sign of repentance matching the Canaanite woman, but yet glorifying God of Israel upon healing.
May our God heal us and the Church in all we do to give Right Glory to Him. May we also cry out seeking His help always even if we fall
From Philakolia - On True Repentance
It is always possible to make a new start by means of repentance. ‘You fell,’ it is written, ‘now arise’ (Proverbs 24:16.) And if you fall again, then rise again, without despairing at all of your salvation, no matter what happens. So long as you do not surrender yourself willingly to the enemy, your patient endurance, combined with self-reproach will suffice for your salvation. ‘For at one time we ourselves went astray in folly and disobedience,’ says St. Paul. ‘…Yet He saved us, not because of any good things we had done, but in His mercy’ (Titus 3:5.) So do not despair in any way, ignoring God’s help, for He can do whatever He wishes. On the contrary, place your hope in Him and He will do one of these things: either through trials or temptations, or in some other way which He alone knows, He will bring about your restoration; or He will accept your patient endurance and humility in the place of works; or because of your hope He will act lovingly towards you in some other way of which you are not aware, and so will save your shackled soul. Only do not abandon your Physician, for otherwise you will suffer senselessly the twofold death because you do not know the hidden ways of God.”