Homily for Third Sunday of Easter

See Christ's saving power and love, even in the darkness

Fr.Bart's Homily | Third Sunday of Easter

The two disciples in this week’s Gospel were walking away from the community of  Jesus’ followers, in a sense from the Church. They may have been afraid, having witnessed the crucifixion or were disappointed and disillusioned, having lost hope in the mission of Jesus to redeem Israel. They had difficulty in seeing how salvation could come out of the Cross. It appears that they had given up and were returning their former lifestyles. 

Jesus, however, reaches out to them and reveals through Scripture the promises and revelations found in God’s Word. With this evidence they recognize Christ’s saving power and love, even in the darkness of the shadow of the Cross! Their faith in Jesus is restored and they are filled with hope and a spiritual strength, so much so that they have to return to the group of disciples and share what they have experienced.

We, too, face the temptation of fear and discouragement when the crosses come into our lives. We have probably met and know of Catholics who have left the Church because the cross crushed their hopes and they have become cynical and angry. What will prevent us from abandoning the Lord and our hope when we feel the weight of the Cross? We can be rescued like these two disciples with a conversation with Christ – prayer!

Prayer is the source of light and strength for the Christian. When we take the time to pray, to talk to the Lord, to read and reflect on the Scriptures, we give Jesus the chance to explain things to our heart. The Risen Lord wants to be a companion with us and  walks along with us in life but we have to open our eyes as men and women of prayer to recognize him. 

Being people who pray is more than simply saying prayers. It is more than reciting empty formulas. Prayer is a relationship, an ongoing conversation with Christ our Lord in which we talk about what is important to us and what is important to him; but, like the two disciples, we have to listen to him. Prayer is more than a monolog; it is a dialog. 

The Lord, if we are willing to listen to him, can pour into our hearts his own strength and light, wisdom and endurance, patience and joy! We need this in these times of suffering, frustration, fear, and uncertainty. The Lord walks with us. He carried and died on his Cross but in the end he rose and made the Cross a symbol not of defeat but of victory. 

Prayer helps us to discover this victory and to carry our crosses with courage and hope.    

– Fr. Bart

Tags: Christ's saving power, Homily Third Sunday 2020, Two disciples walk away

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