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Back Third Sunday of Easter
Sunday, April 18, 2021
From the Desk of Fr. Ron…….
Children live their lives in a way to please their parents. They get up and go to school and fulfill all the expectations that their parents and teachers have of them. Doing what had been told to them is the “gold standard” of being considered a good student and a fine member of the family. But as they mature, they move from fulfilling others’ expectations of them to fulfilling their own expectations. They begin to own their own lives.
It appears to be so for the early Christian community as well. While Jesus walked among them and taught them, they had to balance their new experiences of Jesus as Messiah with all the traditional expectations of what a “Messiah” would be. Some of these expectations were political ones such as overthrowing the Roman occupation government. Other expectations were ushering in the Kingdom with celestial power and glory. But Jesus came in a unique and humble way as our Messiah and Lord.
In the passage of the Lord’s post resurrection appearance as recorded for us by Luke, Jesus “opens their minds to the understanding of the scriptures.” In a way, Jesus shows them how all the pieces of the puzzle, the writings of the law and the prophets, fit together in witness to Him. They begin to move from their youthful faith of doing whatever Jesus would tell them, oftentimes not understanding why, to a more mature faith. The apostles begin to see for themselves and with the gift of the Holy Spirit begin to undertake the mission Jesus would declare unto them. “Thus, it is written that the Christ would suffer and rise from the dead on the third day
and that repentance, for the forgiveness of sins, would be preached in his name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things” Luke 24:48.
The Church has undertaken this mission, commissioned by the Lord Jesus Himself to us. We continually preach that Jesus is our Messiah and Lord. We continually tap into that saving stream of His sacrifice for us as we celebrate the Holy Eucharist. We continually call each other to repentance and through the Sacrament of Penance, offer that forgiveness and healing to all who would avail themselves to that healing stream of friendship and grace. We continue to live like Jesus as we advocate for others, accept others, and love them as Jesus would.
As the scriptures proclaim: “You are witnesses of these things” and indeed we are. Let us continue to embrace a more mature faith in Christ Jesus; a more mature understanding of His purpose proving to us God’s unconditional love for each of us and let us spread this “Good News” to all whom we are in contact with. Let us continue the work of Jesus in bringing all to God’s Kingdom.