Monday April 13th Day 32 since churches were closed

Once again-- a blessed Easter to all!  Still surviving here with my large bag of Tostitos!   We had our private Easter Mass at the church on Sunday and I watched the St. Anne Easter Mass on our website as well as the Easter Mass in Boston at the Cathedral, the 10am Easter Chalice of Salvation Mass, and the Pope’s Mass in Rome.  Attendance was very, very light! It is so surreal celebrating Mass with no people.

But still finding ways to contact parishioners through our website, email, and phone calls.  We are going to get through this and then we should have one big welcome back Mass!

In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Reflection:

I remember early on in the time of the coronavirus, before we were so quarantined, I would see a number of people outside taking a walk together to get some fresh air.  Often times they would be wearing masks or staying somewhat apart as they walked down Britton Street. 

Walks together are very healthy and provide some relaxation.  Good conversation can occur. It is important of course to follow health guidelines during this difficult time while walking.  But families and friends are finding creative ways to do that.

There is a post resurrection story in scripture about two friends who take a walk together.  Luke’s gospel describes them as two disciples who are walking to a village called Emmaus. Along the way they are talking about what happened in Jerusalem and this rumor they had been hearing about Jesus’s resurrection.  You can read about these two walkers in Luke 24:13-35.

The two companions are on the road walking together.  But the journey they took was far more than merely a physical walk to the village of Emmaus.  At first, their conversation was focused on the disappointment of the death of Jesus. But then, a mysterious third walker catches up and joins them.  It was Jesus, although he was not at first recognized by the two companions. So, the two started talking with this stranger.

The two friends said to this third walker, “We were hoping that this Jesus would be the one who would set Israel free.”  The dreams of these two disciples had been dashed. But the third walker, Jesus, helped them to understand things differently.  It was the presence of a third walker---the presence of Jesus---that led the two walkers to understand their situation better. 

The two walkers are so impressed with this stranger that they invite him to eat with them.  When they sit down together and break bread, they then immediately recognize who Jesus is. And then Jesus disappears from them.  The two walkers realized, that they had just been accompanied by the risen Christ. They returned to Jerusalem to tell others of their experience.  You never know who you are going to run across while out walking!

Whether we are out physically walking or not, we should all know we do have an invisible walker accompanying us.  It is the same Jesus who walked with the two disciples on the way to Emmaus. 

Remember the reflection entitled, “Footprints in the Sand?”  It is a reminder to us that there is always our God who walks with us in life.  Including during these trying times. I close with the words from that reflection from an unknown author:

The Footprints Prayer

One night I had a dream I was walking along the beach with the Lord.  Across the sky flashed scenes from my life. For each scene I noticed two sets of footprints in the sand.  One set belonged to me, and the other to the Lord, walking with me. 

When the last scene of my life flashed before me, I looked back at the footprints in the sand.  I noticed, that, many times along the path of my life, there was only one set of footprints.

I also noticed that it happened at the very lowest and saddest times in my life.  This really bothered me, and I questioned the Lord about it. 

“Lord, you said that once I decided to follow you, you would walk with me all the way.  But I have noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life, there is only one set of footprints.  I don’t understand why, in times when I needed you the most, you should leave me.”

The Lord replied, “My precious child.  I love you and I would never, never leave you during your times of trial and suffering.  When you saw only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you.”

Remember, even during these times of the pandemic, Jesus walks with us----even, if, like the two walkers in our gospel today, we do not recognize his presence. 

Fr. John

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