"Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do.
How seriously do we take this quote in the Catholic Church?
As I visit the churches here in Costa Rica I am struck by the contrast between the wide variety of persons at mass here and the homogenous freshly scrubbed look of the average American congregation. As we prepare to celebrate Independence Day, I thank God for the incredible blessings he has bestowed on us. At the same time this gospel reminds us that we do not have to look far to see those who have no been the beneficiaries of these blessing: those who have yet to break free from poverty, alcohol, drugs, etc.
Our cities are replete with these people but do we really want them filling our pews on Sunday?
At times I fear that we would rather watch our churches grow old and empty and ultimately be closed than fill them with "the wrong kind of people."
Today's gospel reminds us that we are the Church of the Great Physician, Jesus Christ, and as such we are called not simply to rail against sickness in our society but to actually do all in our power to cure every person in need of healing.
If Christ is the physician then every church building must be the hospital. The spiritual ER for the community.