Reflection from Fr. Karl
I grew up in a parish dedicated to the Good Shepherd. As a Church it is a little over sixty years old. The weekend after Easter dedicated to the Good Shepherd was always the occasion of the annual forty hours adoration. It is a practice that has largely fallen by the wayside. When I was a kid every parish and community had its Forty Hours. Firstly, it was an opportunity to honor the Real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. It reminded us of Jesus’s promise to be with us all days. It gave us an opportunity to express our love and to spend time with Jesus in prayer and quiet reflection. In many ways our time of Adoration in our Parishes have replaced it. The Forty Hours was also a time of rivalry as parishes competed to see who could on the best display of flowers and decorations. For those who were altar servers it could mean a few hours off school or it the timing was right a whole day. The rivalry or the competition were part of the Forty Hours but they in no way took away from the genuine devotion that was very much the heart of the practice.
In these troubled times we need to be reminded of these practices and devotions for they tell us that Jesus is on the journey with us. He feels our pain and our frustrations. He knows there are tensions and fears and a wish to get back to “normal”. He carried His cross for us. He has told us that he is with us. His presence in the Eucharist even though we are unable to receive at the moment is a sign that He is with us. As we celebrate every week over the airwaves we remember, we celebrate and we believe that all is well, all will be well and that we will all be together again soon.
Parish Activity – What are you Grateful for?
This week’s God, Family, Friends issue (click on the image below) asks us to reflect on what we are grateful for in our lives.
- What do you most appreciate about each family member?
- What are you most grateful for in your life?
- Who/What has helped you the most during this crisis?
- What are the gifts that God has given you or our family recently?
Tell us in a few words, send us some pictures or video of what you are grateful for. We’ll put everyone’s ideas into a video that will be shown before an upcoming Mass. Your ideas will be accepted up until Thursday night, 5/7.
See this week’s Lectio Divina and Children’s Liturgy of the Word here
Reflection from Fr. Karl
All of us at these times of shelter in place have had our moments of frustration. It is hard for parents who are working from home to organize their kids school work and their own work, particularly when computers have to be shared. It’s even harder if you have lost your job and now you have fear and an unknown future. It’s our whole world falling apart. It seems too as if God has deserted us.
The disciples locked themselves in after the crucifixion. They were terrified and rudderless. Sunday came and the women came back from the tomb telling those in the upper room He was alive. There was utter confusion and chaos. Are the women hysterical or could it really be true? That’s the scene that Cleophas and his companion are talking about as they walk along the road to Emmaus. Jesus arrives in their midst and they do not recognize him. The resurrected Jesus is different, transformed. He talks and listens to their stories. They ask him to stay, abide with them. In “the Breaking of Bread”, the early name for the Eucharist, they recognize Him. We are reminded that we too can recognize him in the Eucharist.
This recognition cannot be boxed in and cannot be held in as just something personal. It must be shared, so Cleophas and his companion hurry back to Jerusalem to share it with the disciples. I know I have walked seven miles and even up to 30, but I am not sure that I would be ready after walking seven and then eating to turn around and walk another seven. Jesus had them on fire. May he fire our hearts and our spirits in this time of crisis.
Our Lady of Guadalupe Pray for us.
Parish Activity – Walking on the path with Jesus
This week’s Gospel talks about the two disciples walking together on the road to Emmaus. In their heads they had the “snap shots” of events that occurred over the past week – the crucifixion, the resurrection, etc.
Using the God, Family, Friends activity (click on the image below), take your own journey and have some fun by going on an Alphabet Scavenger Hunt…
• Grab your phones and/or tablets
• Take a walk around your backyard or neighborhood looking for something that starts with the letter “A”.
• Take a photo or short video clip.
• Do the same for the remaining letters in the alphabet (B through Z).
Send us some pictures or video clips of your favorite alphabet finds!
We’ll put everyone’s pictures into a video that will be shown before an upcoming Mass. We need at least one pic for each letter of the alphabet, so kudos to the family that provides a pic for some of those more difficult letters! Pictures will be accepted up until Thursday night, 4/30. Have fun!
Send Us your pics