From the Desk of Father Mac
Third Sunday of Easter
My Dear Friends in Christ,
In today’s Gospel two
disciples encounter the Risen Jesus on the road to Emmaus but fail
to recognize him. They had given up on Christ because of the cross.
They were walking away from the community - leaving the Church. It
wasn't because they were big sinners. They simply can't understand
how salvation can come out of the Cross, victory out of defeat. So
they give up.
But Jesus comes to their rescue. He walks with
them, breaks open the Scriptures, and at table he takes bread,
blesses it, breaks it, and gives it to them. These are the same
actions he performed during the Last Supper and the same actions
associated with the Mass.
This encounter between Jesus and
the two disciples follows the fundamental structure of the Mass.
Luke is explaining the way the resurrected Jesus is present to his
disciples. He is no longer present in bodily form: now he is present
in a new way, in the breaking of the bread—the Mass. This presence
is just as real as his presence during his earthly ministry, but in
a different way, a different “mode” of being.
this encounter, the two disciples say to one another “Were our
hearts nor burning within us?” After this encounter their hope
is stirred into flame. Their spiritual strength and their faith
return and they recognize Jesus in the breaking of the bread.
Suddenly they are able to recognize Christ's saving power and love
even in the darkness of the shadow of the Cross and they become
witnesses to the Risen Lord.
We too face the temptation of
fear and discouragement when crosses come into our lives. In fact,
we all know Catholics who have left the Church, just as these two
disciples were leaving Jerusalem, because the Cross crushed their
hope. What will prevent us from abandoning our Lord and our hope
when we feel the weight of the Cross? The same thing that
rescued these two sad disciples: encountering Christ through the
Mass and the Sacraments.
Jesus wants to pour into our hearts
his strength and light, wisdom and endurance, patience and joy. When
we come to Mass faithfully, we give him a chance to do just that and
we are empowered to go out and be witnesses of the Risen Lord for
others, especially those who have strayed from the faith.
For Information, please contact the
Parish Office at
firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 818.986.8234