Tobit and Waiting for the Messiah – Jun 09 – Homily – Fr John Lawrence

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Fr John Lawrence gives the homily at Bloomington, IN on Jun 09, 2023, on how the joyous return of Tobiah to his concerned parents, who had the unexpected joy of having Tobit's sight returned, relates to the joyful coming of the Messiah to the Jews who were waiting so long in darkness.

Tobit, awaiting his son Tobias' return, experiences worry when the anticipated date passes. His wife, suffering more, fears for their son's life. After their wedding, Tobias and his wife Sarah, laden with half of her parents' property, embark on a long journey home. Tobit's wife, Anna, upon seeing her son return, rejoices, while Tobias, following Raphael's guidance, successfully treats his father's blindness. As they enter the city, Tobit praises God for his healing and acknowledges Sarah as a good wife for his son.

This narrative presents spiritual parallels. Tobit's blindness signifies the spiritual blindness of the Jews, with Tobias and Sarah symbolizing Christ and the Church, respectively. The Jews' distress over the delayed Messiah mirrors Tobit and Anna's worry over Tobias' delay. Just as Tobias heals Tobit, the Jewish people's spiritual blindness will eventually be lifted, enabling them to recognize Christ and his Church. The white film over Tobit's eyes symbolizes self-indulgent folly. When the Jews recognize their spiritual blindness and seek enlightenment, they are destined to receive the light of life.

Sarah's arrival seven days after Tobit's healing signifies the spiritual process whereby, after the Jews receive faith's light and the Holy Spirit's grace, the Church will merge with them, leading to unity under Christ.

Biblical References:

Tobit 3 - Tobit's afflictions - https://bible.usccb.org/bible/tobit/3
Tobit 3 - Tobias and Sarah's wedding - https://bible.usccb.org/bible/tobit/7
Tobit 3 - Tobit's healing and Sarah's arrival - https://bible.usccb.org/bible/tobit/11
Romans 10 - St. Paul on the Jews' misguided zeal - https://bible.usccb.org/bible/romans/10
Acts 9  - St. Paul's conversion - https://bible.usccb.org/bible/acts/9
John 10 - One fold and one shepherd - https://bible.usccb.org/bible/john/10

00:00 – Introduction and Initial Prayer
00:10 – The Worry of Tobit and Anna for Tobias' Delayed Return
01:04 – The Wedding in Ecbatana and the Beginning of Tobias and Sarah's Journey Home
02:07 – Tobias and Raphael's Arrival in Nineveh and the Healing of Tobit's Blindness
03:24 – Exploring the Spiritual Symbolism: Tobit's Blindness and the Jews' Failure to Recognize Christ
04:21 – The Healing of Spiritual Blindness in the Jewish People
05:10 – St. Paul's Conversion and Scales Falling from His Eyes
05:44 – The Arrival of Sarah and the Significance of the Number Seven

Ave Maria!

Mass: St. Ephrem - Opt Mem - http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=3
Readings: Friday 9th Week of Ordinary Time - http://usccb.org/bible/readings/060923.cfm
1st: tob 11:5-15
Resp: psa 146:2, 7-10
Gsp: mar 12:35-37

More on the Readings: https://airmaria.com/r?m=1088&r=1411

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