When people ask a priest to pray for them, it may be so that they may regain peace of mind in coping with an illness or with tensions in the family, but sometimes it’s hoping that some conflict in their lives will be resolved. Certainly, peace of mind is highly desirable, but for it to happen some kind of reconciliation, rooted in conversion, may be needed. This is vital for the healing of life and relationships. We are all sealed with the Spirit, and called by God to live according to His plan, but in practice my healing may need a change of attitude as much as the work of divine grace. Healing takes place in a variety of ways, physical, emotional, spiritual, but it always involves attitudes and lifestyle as much as aches and pains and trauma.
Each one of us is called to be a healer, each in our own way. All of us can learn the power of kindness, a bit of thought, a smile, a helping hand. We are limited only by our lack of concern, by our fear, by our forgetting that (as Paul says) we have been blessed with every spiritual blessing. There untapped potential for good in all of us. It is worth remembering that peace is not just the absence of trouble. It is above all a life-force, like joy and love, that helps us handle life’s difficulties and threats. It’s origins are in God Himself whom the Old Testament calls Yahweh-Shalom, God of Peace. But here, peace means wholeness, completeness, a reality that God wants all of us to share with one another.
So during this Mass we pray with and for each other, bless each other, support each other, forgive each other, treat each other with love and compassion. These are the things that heal and they are within everyone’s reach. Of course, healing is a process; like growth itself it takes time, but who can say what the effect of a simple outreach may be? Let us trust God to complete with loving grace what we begin with his help.