The Gospel of Luke 24:13-35
By Sister Kathleen Murphy, OSF
NOTE: When Father John Leising at Fredonia Place of Williamsville asked S. Kathleen to give a homily this week, she chose today so that she could speak on one of her favorite Gospel stories. This is her homily:
Two of my very favorite Gospel stories are found in Luke. Both are about journeys. They are parallel stories that I try to live. The first is about the journey of a pregnant, unmarried Jewish girl traveling alone or in a caravan, to visit an elderly cousin who also is expecting a child. Mary may be journeying to help her cousin and/or to seek her wisdom. Whatever the case, she is journeying over a hillside country carrying Christ in her womb. As we travel on our life’s journey, don’t we also want to carry Christ to others?
Today’s Scripture the journey is about two disciples on a journey. Perhaps they are a married couple, perhaps not, but they are intimate enough to share their faith and their hope with one another as friends do.
Their journey was different from Mary’s not only in distance but also in emotion. Mary was joyfully hurrying off to visit her cousin. They are grieving the horrible death by crucifixion of their good friend and leader.
Along their way, they welcome a stranger into their midst and share their conversation with him. In the Gospel, we hear their discussion and notice that it is followed by the stranger reviewing a bit of Scripture with them.
When they reached their destination, the two disciple companions invite their new friend to stay with them. While dining, they recognize Him in the blessing and breaking of the bread, only to have Him vanish from their sight.
The disciples recognized Jesus in the blessing and breaking of the Bread. When we take the Eucharist, shall we recognize Him as well? That is our desire.
“Were not our hearts burning within us while He spoke to us on the way and opened the Scripture to us?”
Sisters and Brothers, do we experience “heart burn” when a line or two of Scripture grabs our attention? Do we long to share it with others? Do we?
Do we feel our hearts burning within us as we contemplate Christ in the Blessed Sacrament and then feel called to put our contemplation into action?
Are we excited to share Eucharist and then be Eucharist to one another? Eucharist is both a noun and a verb.
What a blessing is ours to share and to be Eucharist; to carry Christ and to be Christ to one another!