I had planned to continue the daily reflections through this Easter Week but I’ve already missed Easter Monday and Easter Tuesday and now it’s the morning of Easter Wednesday. Thank you to those who emailed asking “where are you”, “what happened” and “I haven’t had a FFF email this week.” Thank you for your enthusiasm which keeps me on my toes.
I am spending this week with a group of priests from across the USA. The traveling to the retreat was a bit more complex than expected hence my missing two days of Easter reflections. Not a great excuse but you will understand.
This year fifty of us are gathering for a week of prayer, reflection and, like the Emmaus disciples. conversation about all that has been happening.
Yesterday as we assembled for the first session, dinner and Mass I marvelled at the diversity of the group. The vast majority are young, under 35 years of age and ordained fewer than ten years. They bring an energy and perspective with a focus on Jesus Christ as the centre of all existence.
Many of them have left promising careers and successes to serve as priests, and their enthusiasm (lit. “full of God”) is contagious.
Now we are able to speak of our ministry as priests as the most promising life of all.
And today this Easter Emmaus gospel has us journeying together.
As you might have noticed I have recently been seeing many gospel encounters through the eyes of young people. Remember the teenage siblings, Martha, Mary & Lazarus of a couple of weeks ago? Today I’m sensing that the two friends walking towards Emmaus were young, perhaps in their teens and who until this Emmaus event were probably disciples-at-a-distance.
A few months ago some friends gave me a framed print of an empty dining room in disarray, meal half eaten, chairs overturned and door to outside open: clearly the Emmaus meal after the disciples had “set out that instant and returned to Jerusalem”.
After their 7 mile walk from Jerusalem, conversation, dinner, reaching the house late in the day – “It is nearly evening and the day is almost over” they would have been tired. Yet the encounter with Jesus restored their focus and their energy” and they wasted no time and made no preparation before beginning the return journey to join the rest of the disciples in Jerusalem.
Many people have expressed their appreciating to me for FFF and for these daily reflections. I’m grateful that technology gives me the opportunity to do what most priests do every day in a parish, sharing a little reflection at Mass or with groups and conversing about all that has been happening. The difference is that my parish is an online community and your comments and feedback are the greatest encouragement I could receive.
I have been asked by a number of people to publish a collection of Food For Faith reflections from across the years. I am very aware that my reflections work only because of your engagement. Therefore I want to include sentences and brief paragraphs from readers in the book, not thanking me but jotting a thought or two about how FFF has helped your maturity of faith in Jesus Christ, God-with-us. So, write anything at all and email it to me at email@example.com. I will include your first name and perhaps your town/city or country I can’t guarantee that everything you send will make it to print, but I will do my best since I know your brief reflections will encourage the faith of others.
Please, take a moment now and share two or three sentences now either in the comment section below or by email to me.
FFF IN THE CAFE… Send your name and the name of a cafe or bar to firstname.lastname@example.org Scribble FFF on a table napkin, take a seat and wait.
DROP IN FOR A CHAT:
Monday 17 April 2023
11.00am at The Cafe at Harrisons, 23 Peka Peka Rd. Waikanae Beach. Catherine.
Monday 4 May 2023 (and every Monday)
10.00am at Moko (Kudos) in the Bush Inn Centre Christchurch (Directions) Trish
Tuesday 12 May 2023 (and second Tuesday of every month)
10.30am at Zenders 44 Hopkins Road, Newstead, Hamilton (Directions). Christina