The Homily of the Apostolic Nuncio, Chapel of the Apostolic Nunciature, Wednesday 17th January 2018
Gospel: Mark 3:1-6
In today’s Gospel we meditate on the last of the five conflicts which Mark presents at the beginning of his Gospel. The four previous conflicts were provoked by the enemies of Jesus. This last one is provoked by Jesus himself and reveals the seriousness of the conflict between Him and the religious authority of His time. 
It is a conflict of life or death. It is important to note the category of enemies which has arisen in this conflict. It is a question of the Pharisees and the Herodians, that is, of the religious and civil authority. When Mark wrote his Gospel in the year 70, many of them still remembered very well the terrible persecution of the 60’s against the Christian communities. In hearing that Jesus Himself had been threatened to death and how He behaved in the midst of these dangerous conflicts, the Christians found a source of courage and direction so as not to be discouraged along the journey.
The enemies were observing Him to see if Jesus would cure on Saturday. They said that to cure a sick person was the same as working. They placed the law above the well-being of people. Jesus was an uncomfortable person, because He placed the well-being of people above the laws. 
Jesus asks two things of the physically disabled person: “Get up and stand in the middle!” The word “get up” is the same one which the communities of Mark also used to say: “rise, resurrect”. The disabled person has to “rise”, to get up, to live in the middle and to take his place in the center of the community! The marginalized, the excluded, must live in the middle! They cannot be excluded. They must be together with the others! Jesus calls the excluded one to stand in the middle.