In ancient times, lepers were considered “unclean” and were the outcasts of society. They were socially ostracized and forced to live separated from the community. Sadly, it is not uncommon to feel the same way after going through a divorce as a Catholic. You may feel “unclean” and unworthy to participate in your faith. This is made worse by the condescending stares as you walk into Mass alone, or by people who you thought were friends now ignoring you. Being divorced and Catholic can make you feel like a modern day leper.
Take heart! Jesus reaches out to you just like he did the lepers of old, full of mercy and compassion. In Mark’s Gospel, Jesus, filled with compassion, hears the leper’s plea and immediately heals him (Mark 1:40-42). Jesus offers the same compassion and healing for you. When you are feeling isolated and stained by divorce, cry out to Jesus. Ask him to show mercy and compassion on you and expect him to work miracles in your life. He will! He knows your pain and your shame. He also knows that you were made in the image of His father and that you are wonderful and good, no matter what this world does to you. Reach out to Jesus. He will touch you, heal you, and restore you to the fullness of life.
Moved with compassion, Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, and said to him, “I do choose. Be made clean!” – Mark 1:41