Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Feast of St. Agnes
Agnes was a popular Roman martyr who lost her life when only about twelve years old. It was during an early fourth century persecution and her feast has always been on January 21. She is often pictured with a lamb because of her name, but also because of her sacrifice and innocence.
Jesus again bothers the Pharisees by curing on the sabbath. This time it is a man with a withered hand. The Pharisees were watching him "so that they might accuse him." So he said to them, "Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath rather than do evil, to save life rather than to do destroy it? They remained silent so Jesus was angry and grieved at their hardness of heart. He told the man with the withered hand, "Stretch our your hand." He stretched it out and his hand was restored. The Pharisees went out and "immediately took counsel with the Herodians against him to put him to death." They were the ones doing evil on the sabbath!
How easy it is to be critical. We need to stretch out our hands to others.