Eyes Wide Open
As we continue our journey through the Easter season, we hear several post-resurrection stories that point to the faith of the early disciples of Jesus. Today we hear the story of the disciples who meet Jesus on the road to Emmaus.
The following commentary on this scripture passage is from Word Among Us (Easter, 2017) “In the story, Jesus walks – disguised – with two disciples for a time as they grieve his death. It isn’t until they break bread together later that evening that they finally recognize him.
So often this is the case with us. We look for Jesus, but we cannot see him. We wish he were close to us, but we cannot find him. We listen for his words, but we hear nothing. But that never stops him from reaching out to us.
The disciples are filled with doubts about Jesus’ promise to rise from the dead, so he begins to confront those doubts. Beginning with Moses, he uses Scripture to explain how everything that was written about him has come true. Slowly, he draws them to himself, until the moment for breaking bread, when they are finally ready to receive him.
These two disciples saw Jesus. They touched him and heard him. Their hearts were even burning with hope and anticipation. But amazing as it sounds, they could not recognize him. They had to receive the bread first – then their eyes were opened.
Eucharist Leads To Service
Jesus wants to teach all of us. He wants to draw us to himself. Through the Holy Spirit, he wants to give us insights into God’s wisdom, love and grace. This happens in a very special and powerful way at Mass. As ordinary bread is transformed into the Body of Christ, our eyes can be opened to Jesus. As his body is broken and shared with us, our hearts can be filled with his love and his mercy, that moves us to want to serve.
This is exactly what happened to the disciples of Jesus on the road to Emmaus. Night had already fallen by the time they broke bread together. Not only had they been on a long journey, but they had spent most of their time in animated, challenging conversation. Most likely they were tired. Yet once their eyes were opened, they didn’t go home to rest. Instead, they turned around and immediately went to Jerusalem. They found Peter and the others and they told them about all that had happened.
This night journey illustrates one of the great works of the Eucharist: it moves us out of ourselves and compels us to serve Jesus. The disciples were so full of joy that they could not wait to share their good news.
What a model of the wonderful work Jesus wants to do in us! He wants to convince us that he is the risen Lord as we break bread with him. He wants to open our eyes to see him so that we will want to share his good news.”
“Let The Children Come To Me”
Our children in Second Grade will receive their First Holy Communion on Saturday, May 6th. There will two celebrations for our 52 first communicants; one at 11:30 AM and another at 2:00 PM. This is the last Sunday when they come up with their parents during communion time and ask for a blessing from the priest or minister. How exciting it will be to receive the Eucharist for the first time.
Please keep our children in your prayers as they journey through these final days of preparation. We are proud of them and we are inspired by their desire to come closer to Jesus as they share this sacred meal with us. We give thanks for those parents who have modeled their faith for their children. We joyfully welcome them to the table of the Lord.
Children’s Liturgy of the Word
Parents, note that next Sunday, May 7th, we will celebrate the Children’s Liturgy of the Word at the 9:30 AM Mass at Immaculate Conception Church. This when the young children at Mass are dismissed to hear the scripture stories and receive a special lesson that is prepared for them by a catechist. LikeJesus on the road to Emmaus, we try to break open the scriptures to them so that their young minds can grasp and enjoy the good news.
A couple of weeks ago, as the Cubs hosted their first home -stand at Wrigley Field, I visited our children in Kindergarten. I was their “Special Reader” for the day. Dressed in my Cub paraphernalia, I read to them the classic poem, “Casey At The Bat.” When finished, we all stood and sang, “Take Me Out To The Ball Game.”
Kids have so much faith!