Thursday of the 5th Week in Ordinary Time.
The first reading continues with the story of creation of Man. The Man, is still alone on the earth with only the plant life which had been given to him in the Garden. So, now once more from the soil of the earth, God brings into being all the animals and birds. They are brought to the Man who gives names to them all, a sign that he is responsible for them and is over them.
But the Man still needed “a helper as his partner”. The animals and birds could not fill that role. Without female companionship and a partner in reproduction, the Man could not fully realise his humanity and the command to increase and multiply.
The Man was put into a deep sleep and, as he slept, one of his ribs was removed and the gap covered with flesh. The rib, in its turn, was formed into a Woman and God then brought her to the Man. On seeing her the Man was delighted and burst into song:
"This at last is bone from my bones and flesh from my flesh. This one shall be called Woman, for out of Man this one was taken.”
Creation of Eve and bringing her to Adam in the first Marriage ceremony is the epic act of God in creation. It indicates that together the Man and Woman are a union that makes each stronger than they could be separate. Husband and wife give themselves to each other without any holding back, and they accept each other just as they are, with all their excellent qualities and with their shortcomings.
The reading also indicates that God is the author of Marriage. From the beginning, God intended Marriage to be a lasting relationship between one Man and one Woman. This institution of Marriage was raised by Jesus into a sacrament when he said " a man shall leave his Father and Mother and be joined to his wife. And the two shall become one flesh. What God has joined together, no human being must separate." (Mk10: 7-9) My dear brothers and sisters, the institution of Marriage is surrounded by so many dangers which include, divorce, adultery, fornication, lesbianism, homosexuality, violence, unfaithfulness, anger, revenge etc. We need to commit ourselves in praying for all Marriages that they may retain the original plan of God to live joyful, peacefully and in unity.
Like the Greek woman in the gospel who was a Syro-phoenician by birth we need to have great Faith and trust in Jesus. Her powerful faith was immediately rewarded and her daughter got healed. Jesus excludes no one from his mercy and healing power. To Jesus there is no stranger. We all belong to him.
I wish you all, a blessed day.