Certainly the past 18 months or so have made us all aware of the complexity of disease outbreak called epidemiology, “the study and analysis of the distribution, patterns and determinants of health and disease conditions in defined populations.” Back in 1976 there was another outbreak of limited scope, but one that became well know as Legionnaires’ Disease. If you would like to read a longish article on the event,the complexity and perplexity of identifying the disease, its cause, and its propagation – long but fascinating – have a look here.
When one hears the story of Jesus and the fig tree in today’s gospel, it has to strike you as one of the strangest in the Gospels. It seems completely out of character for Jesus to curse anything much less a fig tree. When the text goes on to include the detail that “it was not the time for figs” (v. 13), Jesus appears even more unreasonable, and the incident becomes more difficult to understand – and so most people do the “holy nod” – Jesus said it so there must be something there – and move on.