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Friends, in today’s Gospel, Jesus cures so many people that he has to climb into a boat to escape the press of the crowd. To this day, the Church carries on his gracious healing ministry. 

We recall that the Apostles of Jesus simply continued what the Master did. And one of the principal marks of the Lord’s ministry was clearly healing. There was, of course, a deep biblical conviction that when the day of the Lord arrives, creation would be set right. What we witness in the healings of Jesus is just this repairing of creation.

If you doubt that miracles of physical healing still take place in the life of the Church, I invite you to read Craig Keener’s book Miracles or visit the Church in Africa, Asia, or Latin America, where the expectation of the miraculous is taken for granted. But the Church also brings healing to mind, soul, will, and imagination. The Bible knows that sin has done tremendous damage to us, and anyone involved in pastoral ministry knows what this looks like: broken minds, divided hearts, addicted passions.