After Jesus had finished all his sayings in the hearing of the people, he entered Capernaum. A centurion there had a slave whom he valued highly, and who was ill and close to death. When he heard about Jesus, he sent some Jewish elders to him, asking him to come and heal his slave. When they came to Jesus, they appealed to him earnestly, saying, “He is worthy of having you do this for him, for he loves our people, and it is he who built our synagogue for us.”
And Jesus went with them, but when he was not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to say to him, “Lord, do not trouble yourself, for I am not worthy to have you come under my roof; therefore I did not presume to come to you. But only speak the word, and let my servant be healed. For I also am a man set under authority, with soldiers under me; and I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes, and to another, ‘Come,’ and he comes, and to my slave, ‘Do this,’ and the slave does it.”
When Jesus heard this he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd that followed him, he said, “I tell you, not even in Israel have I found such faith.” When those who had been sent returned to the house, they found the slave in good health.
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
When I was in journalism school, one story I covered was the dedication of a firefighters’ memorial. There I met the daughter of a fireman who had died on the job and, as a student, I felt completely unqualified to handle the weight of the story—the daughter even had her father’s helmet on hand.
Yet she was so grateful that the story was being told, even if it was simply a school assignment. When we say, “I’m not worthy,” we accept our own failings and deficits; we give voice to our humility. This is why Jesus says, “Blessed are the meek and humble.” Our humility makes us worthy to Him.
—Connor Walters is a communications coordinator at Saint Ignatius High School in Cleveland, OH. He also coaches rowing and co-moderates the school’s Saint Benedict Joseph Labre Ministry to the Homeless.
Those who commit themselves to following Christ
pledge to share his life and destiny.
Like Jesus, they do not regard life as something to be enjoyed egotistically,
but rather as service to their fellow human beings,
particularly to the neediest.
—Leonardo Boff, OFM