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Monday of Holy Week – The Journey to Salvation

Invitation to Prayer:

As we enter into the rituals of Holy Week, we are invited to enter more deeply into the Passover journey through death to fullness of Life. We follow Jesus along the way of his passion, death, and resurrection step by step. Our prayer this morning invites to come as we are into this journey.  We begin a pilgrimage … a time of walking and seeking a new heart … a heart seeking pardon, healing and wholeness.  Let us ask for the courage to begin this journey in peace.

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As Easter approaches and I reflect on this Lenten season, I am humbled by an unexpected journey with a relative.  The conversations were rich and meaningful for each of us in different ways.  He is asking me questions about my faith.  I am responding to his questions to the best of my knowledge; but his questions lead me to questions I was not necessarily aware that I had.  In turn, I was led to a deeper Lenten prayer. 

I was shocked when, via text, he asked me to be his sponsor during his RCIA journey to becoming a Catholic.  Sure, many in my family ask me to be a Godparent to their babies and then those children grow up to ask me to be their Confirmation sponsors.  Truth be told, often, I am the choice of last resort because I meet the criteria of ‘practicing Catholic’ where others may identify as Catholic but they have a hard time getting the required sponsor sheet signed by their pastor.

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Fire in our Hearts - Easter Reflection

A journey is a journey.   A trip has a map, a GPS or a plan of some kind, but a journey requires openness to change, trust in journeying companions and living in the moment.  The story of the Emmaus journey (Luke 24:13-35) is a perennial favorite Easter story. It is a story of ordinary events – a walk home, conversation, remembering, a meal, and recognition. It is a story of emotions that move from sadness, maybe even anger, and disappointment, through eager learning (feeling fire within) to joy and a need to “run back to the others and share.”  The disciples experience something very deep as they make their way back home. “A walk and a meal can transform our life.”  The walk is a familiar trail, and the familiar may be around us; neighbors, children, pets, tiny birds that look at us, asking for our notice.   God finds ways to reach us, and speak to us, always; alone or in a group. The events in this story follow a weekend like no other, and result in a moment when they knew, “Yes, He is risen.  We recognized Him in the familiar breaking of bread!”  God graces us with peak experiences that come when we need to be reassured and reminded we are not alone.   They may come when we are sharing what we have, when we are pondering, when we are tired and hungry, or when we are fired up with excitement and energy.   God knows our needs and God will find a way.  Happy Easter! 

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