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Inviting Christ In Your Heart
Through Hospitality

Homily 05 04 2014
3rd Sunday of Easter - A

Homily 05 04 2014
3rd Sunday of Easter - A

View the Readings for this day

A young boy was playing left field in a Little League game when a man yelled over the fence, "Hey son, who's winning?" The little boy replied, "We are!" "What's the score?" "They have 23 -- We have 0." "They have you 23 to 0?" The man was confused. "I thought you said you were winning." "Oh, we are," explained the little boy. "You see, we ain't come to bat yet!"


It was easy for the disciples to quit. The One in Whom they had placed their hopes was dead. It was 23 to nothing in their life that Easter morning.

What we are being asked to do is to reawaken much more in the whole Church trust in the risen Jesus, mobilize ourselves to put him fearlessly at the center of our parishes and communities, and focus all our strength on listening well to what his Spirit is saying to us, his followers, today.

The seventeenth century Rembrandt gave us three pictures of the Emmaus happening. Each one dwells gloriously on a different aspect of the account.

William Barclay calls this Gospel one "of the immortal short stories of the world." Who would dispute him? Only Luke tells us this story. Mark refers to it in a one liner.

Early Sunday morning two minor disciples are walking the seven miles from Jerusalem to Emmaus. It is forty-eight hours since their Leader had been brutally mugged and murdered. They were not happy campers. They are among the very first people mentioned in the Gospels as members of the Church.

They had waited around for the Resurrection, but they came up empty. Events would establish they had left Jerusalem too soon. They were heading back to work making beds, emptying slop buckets, and eating army chow. They had lost their faith. The whole Jesus thing was a fraud.. They were going back to lives of noisy desperation.

Then a stranger appeared from nowhere. For reasons unknown, they did not recognize their former Employer. Jesus, with tongue in cheek, asks, "What is new, friends?" They respond with shock, "Mister, are you the only one in Jerusalem not aware?" So, they bring the Resurrected Lord up to speed.

We then have a fresh dimension of the Christ that we might want to dwell on.

So, Jesus puts this husband and wife in the picture. Luke is emphasizing the ability of the Lord to make clear sense of muddy situations for these two disciples.

Emmaus is in the immediate distance. Jesus pushes on, "I will leave you here." "No, stay with us. This day is done. He was waiting for the invitation.

He never forces Himself on anyone then or now. But, once asked, He responds immediately. We should all be such gracious guests.

The house had little food. So, one went off to gather. If they were married, do you want to guess who went? Their depression obviously had lifted. The record shows that the Christ invariably has that impact on those smart enough to take Him at His word.

The Lord takes charge and he took the bread and said the blessing..." and you know of course how the story ends. They recognized Him. How? One author conjectures, "He knows He cannot force or frighten us into new growth, and so He loves us into new life.

Jesus acts exactly as His Father acts." Then He disappears. The two disciples rush out for the hurried trip back to headquarters in Jerusalem.

One suspects they didn't even take time to wash the dishes. What is Luke telling us? The evangelist is telling us that the Resurrection is news that must be told immediately to everyone.

Cleopas and his companion shared with the stranger all the way through. Not only were they ready to share their confidences with him, but they went all the way and shared their meal and shelter with him.

It was in the process of this sharing that the moment of disclosure occurred and they suddenly realized that the one whom they had accepted all along as a helpless stranger was indeed Jesus, the answer to all their heart's questions.

This discovery that the one in whom they had trusted, Jesus Christ, was indeed alive and not dead, gave new meaning to their lives, their faith and their vocation. They went back that same night to rejoin the company of apostles and followers of Jesus and share the good news with them that they had met the risen Lord and that they met him in the person of a stranger.

The resurrection was for Jesus the dividing line between earthly life when he was limited and risen life when he is no longer limited in this way.

The risen Lord now appears in all types of bodies: male and female, White and Black, young and old, rich and poor, handicapped and non-handicapped, native and immigrant, Catholic and Protestant, Christian and Moslem, liberal and conservative, and so on and so forth. Though we may see those who are different from us as strangers, today's gospel challenges us to start seeing them simply as companions on the way.

When we reach out to them in hospitality we reach out to God and attract a blessing to ourselves.

Let us pray today for the grace to overcome the crippling fear of strangers, even those gathered here together, for the courage to reach out with open hearts and open hands to those who are different from us, knowing that even though the strangers on our way may not look like Jesus, they may indeed turn out to be Jesus just like the lonely stranger on the way to Emmaus.

We are each called to welcoming all to a life of holiness and offering a pathway to heaven. St. Francis of Assisi is popularly thought to be the person to most resemble Christ. The one who most completely embraced all that the Gospel demands of us.

St. Francis was awakened to a new zeal, founding the Order of the Franciscans and a renewal and the Annual Catholic Appeal is helping to create a renewal of faith and the building of our Church from within our own Catholic communities -parishes, agencies and schools. Each small act of charity in each small pocket of faith is like leaven in the loaf.

Today's Gospel is the warm and amazing story of the disciples meeting Jesus on the road to Emmaus. They did not recognize Him at first, but only in the breaking of the bread was he known to them.

The Annual Catholic Appeal - in the end - seeks only this, to help more people recognize and meet Jesus, and experience the courage and joy of the first disciples.

This is the Church we seek to build with Pope Francis who calls us to be like St. Francis, to be like the disciples on the road to Emmaeus.


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Mass Schedule

Saint Aloysius
Tue - Fri - 8:30am
Sat - 5:00pm
Sun - 10:30am

Holy Days
8:30am & 7:00pm

First Friday
8:30am followed by Adoration until 7:55pm

- After weekday Mass
- Before Sat & Sun Mass
- Mon - 3:00pm

Sat - 3:30pm - 4:30pm
Or by appointment

Our Lady Of Lourdes
Sun - 8:30am

Before Sunday Mass

Find Us

Saint Aloysius
211 West Mason Ave.
Buckley, WA 98321
Phone: 360-829-6515
Fax: 360-829-5190
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Office Hours
Tue - Fri 9am - 12:00pm

Our Lady Of Lourdes
506 Ash Street
Wilkeson, WA 98396
Phone: 360-829-6515
Fax: 360-829-5190
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