21 August 2022
Bible readings for today
you draw us all to you through love rather than law;
set us free from any bondage,
so we and all your children stand upright in the dignity you give us,
praising you and proclaiming your wonders;
through Jesus Christ our Liberator, who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever,
Jesus heals a woman on the sabbath (Luke 13:10-17)
A striking image from Visio Lectio for this week's print design, from Rev. Sarah West. Shared with permission (PNG Download
One of the reasons we invite such a range of people to be a part of these discussions is because of the richness and variety of people's understandings of the Scriptures. This week, then, you'll have some very different ideas to choose from as you come to the Gospel reading! Jesus heals a woman who has been bent over for 18 years, and Rev Mike Godfrey encourages Chris, Damon and Nicki to work out what is challenging and joyful in a story like that today.
I wonder questions
You may like to ask some questions to help foster empathy and compassion with the woman in the story. Take care if you're acting it out, as this may be difficult to navigate, but you could ask a volunteer (adult or child) to stop over and think about
Some things to note:
Healing and Disabilities
As with any healing story, we need to be careful not to position those living with disabilities as in some way deficient. For the woman in the text, the story moves her from isolation to freedom and to an upright stance and, in speaking to the leaders of the Synagogue, Jesus names her clearly as a Daughter of Abraham. This participation in, and identity with, the community of faith is an expression of healing. What physical, structural or attitudinal barriers might need to be removed for people living with disabilities to participate fully in the life of your community?
On another note, though this story is a story of good news and freedom for the woman in the text, the lack of healing that members of our community experience in their own lives may make this story difficult for some to hear. How can you preach and teach about this story with that pastoral reality in mind?
What's a sabbath?