The Centurion in today’s gospel was a very important person. By his very name he was in charge of 100 Roman soldiers. Centurions were the backbone of the Roman army and the glue that held the army together when they were far from home. They were respected by the Romans and feared by the Jews. It is remarkable then that he would come to Jesus to heal his beloved slave. He risked mockery from the Jews and ridicule from his soldiers.
Yet he took a risk because he was a man of faith and believed Jesus could heal his slave. He was a man of courage knowing the potential ridicule from his associates. A good question for us is whether we would be willing to face ridicule in the practice of our faith. Sometimes in a group of strangers we are often afraid to even mention we are Catholic for fear of ridicule. We are afraid to stand up for Catholic values.
LIke the Centurion, we need to approach Jesus with our needs and the needs of those we love. We need to have faith that he will hear our prayers because of our faith in his healing power. We need to also ask him for the strength to stand up for our faith in all situations.
DeColores, Deacon Doug