Sunday, October 10, 2010
The Gaze that Saves
In the Sacrament of Penance we "show" ourselves and the leprosy of sin is taken away.
The Gospels are full of people who want to see Jesus. Jesus likens himself to the serpent in the desert that brings healing to those who simply look upon it.
Pre-counter Reformation Catholicism seems to have been very much about the "gaze that saves", of looking at, being proximate to the Holy and holy things. It is Communion rather than hearing which saves, what happens in the soul rather than the mind, not homilies but holiness.
In the first read it is either obedience to Elisha or washing in the Jordan following the rubrics laid by Elisha that heals Naaman. In the Old Testament people are saved by looking on bronze serpents. In Acts Peter's shadow and his handkerchief brings healing.
Posted by Fr Ray Blake