Growing up in a largely non-Catholic world, the Christianity I was raised in was a very individual faith, rooted in accepting "Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior." Ideas like parents professing faith on behalf of their children at baptism made no sense.
In today's gospel see just what is possible because of the unlimited power of God's grace and the unity of the human family. The person in question is a paralytic. There is no evidence of his faith or even what communication skills he had. There those who will try and say he would have asked his friends to take him, or something like that, but that's not what the gospel says. What the gospel says is that
When Jesus saw their faith, he said to him, “Child, your sins are forgiven.”
It is the faith of the friends that saves the paralytic.
From parents presenting children for baptism, to masses offered for the dead, our faith has throughout its history celebrated to real power of intercessory prayer.
We tend to limit our intercessions to an unemployed relative or a sick friend, or go for the truly abstract like world peace. When we heard the news yesterday of the collapse of the government in Lebanon, how many of us thought to pray for the members of Hezbollah who caused the collapse.
If we truly believe in the power of prayer, why do not on a daily basis pray for those most capable of causing disorder, pain, suffering. Why do we wait until after the violence and pray for the victims? Let us be truly proactive. Let us pray for those who are contemplating violence.
Let our pray reflect that we really do believe with God all things are possible.