Fr. Ottavio Raimondo

Jesus went in the house of Simon, a Pharisee, and sat at table… A woman, a sinner of that town entered bringing a vessel of scented oil.

Anytime Jesus goes in a house, wonderful things happen: the triumph of life. When he was still in Mary’s womb entered in Elizabeth’s house and joy reaches John who, also, was still in his mother womb. He goes in Peter’s house and his mother-in- law had recovered; He went in a young family house who were celebrating a wedding and water is changed in wine; He went in Levi’s house and it’s a feast for everybody; in Jairus’ house his daughter is recovered to life; in Marta’s house the scent invades every corner; He enters in the house where the disciples were locked and fills them with forgiveness, peace and finally He  sends them to the ends of the world; in the inn with the two disciples of Emmaus he sends them again to the community they left behind.
Jesus enters in Simon’s house and he evangelizes him pardoning  the prostitute who, feeling to be loved, learns how to love and starts an open, dignified new life, and  projected to the future.
Today Jesus enters into your house and He doesn’t leave unchanged any situation He can meet.
Jesus’ style is ‘shocking, revolutionary and upsetting’: it doesn’t burns the straw , but it collects the wheat. He doesn’t send away anybody : on the contrary He meets everybody, He stand by them, speaks with them and takes food, sharing with them.

“Simon, I have to say something to you”. And Simon answered: “Tell me, Master.” 

Jesus isn’t angry, he knows what Simon is thinking, what the others are thinking and he knows very well the woman. But Jesus has God’s view upon her, upon her situation. This is a strong teaching for Simon, the Pharisees, for anyone  who thinks to be pure and just so that has reached God. But he hasn’t reached anything in his life. “I have something to say to you”. These words of Jesus are similar to the words spent by the Father in the Prodigal Son parable. The Father goes out twice,  the first time for the son who is coming back home, and after for the elder brother who has  never understood the Father, even though he has always lived ‘faithfully’ to him. Many times we build up cages we are not able to recognize ! Simon builds up his cage labeling the people: “This isn’t the Messiah, that one is the prostitute of the village, I’m the pure and devoted Pharisee”.  So, the truth is that the Lord has always something to say to us. Courage, you too bring your little vessel of perfume to Jesus. Become who, he/she, is always in the heart of God because you are victim of injustice and marginalization. Spread his feet with your oil, listen to Him, what He has to say to you, today, and open your life to Him.

Afterwards Jesus went on crossing villages and towns

At the beginning of the paragraph the Pharisee and the woman have no name, because they represent the humanity. Jesus goes towards this lost humanity who, on one side, looks for security, and idols on the other side. To follow Jesus means to become a disciple. This woman wants to become a disciple, maybe she heard that the best place in the Kingdom of God is reserved to sinners and prostitutes. So she stays back to Jesus, she crouch herself behind his feet, but she does this no more as the prostitute, but as a woman, a disciple who has discovered the true treasure. Her weeping are the tears of a situation no more bearable. This woman is no more a prostitute and without words, but only through gestures she says: ‘I’m a new woman, the entrusted woman, I’m the new humanity that the Lamb has married and made beautiful, making her free from every spot and wrinkle.
And Jesus goes crossing towns and villages. Are you ready to walk with Him, meeting everybody who wants to build up the new humanity of the new covenant?