Our presence at table

In the gospel of Luke, what is the most important city? If the number of times mentioned is the criteria, then Jerusalem is the answer, being mentioned more than 90 times in the Gospel of Luke and Acts of the Apostles. I imagine there are all kinds of “what is Luke’s favorite…” questions, but an insightful one come from Fr. Bill McConville OFM. Fr. Bill has a daily podcast on Soundcloud that you can subscribe to and be very much enlightened by his insights:  So… what is Luke’s favorite piece of furniture? 

The dining room table. Throughout the Gospel, Luke’s narrative features Jesus at table. At table with the high born and low, with the Pharisees and the sinners, with the socially connected and the socially outcast – all manner of people. Death and Resurrection does not discontinue meeting Jesus as the table setting – consider the account on the Road to EmmausAnd it happened that, while he was with them at table, he took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them. With that their eyes were opened and they recognized him” (Luke 24:30-31)

Perhaps pointedly so in this time of pandemic, we should consider the importance that we place on presence at the table. The pandemic makes us no less busy and in fact may have already increased the amount of time together as people work from home, children are virtually at school, and more. Does the family still gather at the table? Is there blessing, not just in the formal prayer of blessing, but is the conversation edifying, constructive, hopeful, help to build relationships, and continue the fellowship of the gathering.

The table was likely Jesus’ favorite piece of furniture. It was a place where people could encounter the person and fellowship of Jesus. Do our tables provide the same gateway?

At table

In the gospel of Luke, what is the most important city? If the number of times mentioned is the criteria, then Jerusalem is the answer, being mentioned more than 90 times in the Gospel of Luke and Acts of the Apostles. I imagine there are all kinds of “what is Luke’s favorite…” questions, but an insightful one come from Fr. Bill McConville OFM. Fr. Bill has a daily podcast on Soundcloud that you can subscribe to and be very much enlightened by his insights.

As he asks in today’s installment, what is Luke’s favorite piece of furniture?

Continue reading

It makes sense

he_qi_road_to_emmausI have been leading Bible studies for a long time now. I think the first one was in 1984. When I think back, it seems to me, that each time we study St. Luke’s account called the “Road to Emmaus” the same basic questions arise. “How could these two people, clearly disciples, people who may have followed Jesus for maybe three years – having seen the miracles, the mighty works, heard the preaching, seen Lazarus raised from the dead, and heard Jesus proclaim that he would be put to death and then rise – how could they then hear the reports of the empty tomb and then walk away in a slow descent into despair? Don’t they get it? How could they not get it? Where is their faith? It doesn’t make sense.” Continue reading

Connecting the dots

he_qi_road_to_emmaus

Road to Emmaus by He Qi

The daily Mass readings for the Wednesday in the Octave of Easter includes the well-known account of two travelers on the road to Emmaus. Earlier this week I included a commentary on the passage. This morning in Mass I offered a few thoughts on the passage.

It seems to me that we all have plans. It is my experience that those plans never unfold quite as we had planned.  Some are side-tracked, some laid aside for other plans, others fall away forgotten or unused, and some are part of disappointment, discouragement, or a life slipping off the rails. Continue reading