Friday, April 13, 2018

In The Breaking Of The Bread

Dear Parishioners,

Thank you, Atlantic Maintenance Group. Again you generously donated time, materials and labor to help clean up and beautify our grounds and flower beds. We appreciate these services.

Today’s gospel uses a curious phrase as the disciples describe their encounter with Jesus on the road to Emmaus (Lk 24:35-48). It tells “how they had come to know Jesus in the breaking of bread.” “The breaking of bread” was the term St. Luke used for the Eucharist or Holy Communion. He uses that term again in describing the communal life of the followers of Jesus, after the descent of the Holy Spirit, “who devoted themselves to the apostle’s instruction and communal life, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.” (Acts 2:42) In other words, they regularly gathered for Mass. These gatherings were essential for the building up of the Church and the faith of Jesus’ followers.

The old Baltimore catechism asked “Why did God make me?” The response was “God made me to know Him, to love Him, and to serve Him in this world so as to be happy with him in the next world.” We can read and study for years about God, but to know Him personally and intimately we need the Eucharist, we need the “breaking of bread.” In the early Church, Christians understood this and were willing to die rather than give up the Eucharist. Today so many Catholics find other things more important. How sad, how foolish, how suicidal!

In the next few weeks, our young boys and girls will be receiving their first communion. Let us pray they will continue growing in their relationships with Jesus and “come to know Jesus in the breaking of bread.”

Father Carl