- The Abbey of the Genesee - https://www.geneseeabbey.org -

April 15, 2020

Fr. Jerome Machar, OCSO

Wednesday of the Octave of Easter
Acts 3:1-10; Luke 24:13-35

As a community of faith, we are celebrating the empty tomb in an empty church.
With the cripple, we find ourselves outside the door, hoping that someone would look
upon us with love and speak words of healing and forgiveness. During these unusual
times, we need someone to speak a word of life and hope to our hearts. Having heard
the healing words of the Gospel, we must then go forth and speak words of hope,
bidding those in distress to stand up and walk in the light of faith. The empty tomb tells
us that sin and death are not the final words. He who took our crippled nature to himself
has made us whole by rising from the dead. He who was confined to the land of
darkness and gloom has become for us the source of life and light. Like the beggar at
the Beautiful Gate, we are invited to enter the courts of the Lord, walking and jumping
and shouting for joy. Christ is truly risen from the dead. By His death, he has conquered
death. In Him, we live and move and have our being.

During this time of crisis, like the disciples on the road to Emmaus, we find
ourselves distanced from the community of believers. Like them, as we go our separate
ways, we are trying to figure out what is happening in the world around us. Like them,
many of us have gotten so caught up in our concerns that we cannot recognize the One
who is accompanying us along our journey. While we are pondering our plight, he is
speaking to our hearts, calling us to lift up our heads and see the rising sun. He holds
the key that can free us from our darkness and lead us into the light of eternal day.
When our eyes are opened and we recognize him, let us bid him welcome to the
innermost chambers of our hearts. In our distancing, the Lord who overcame death and
the tomb seeks us out. He walks with us and draws us into his loving embrace.

In that embrace, we are made members of the household of God. The Word
made flesh made himself nothing so that he might make us everything. When he came
into the world, he was rejected by the very people he came to save. In his rejection, he
became the cornerstone upon whom we who are spiritual stones rest. Upon Him, the
kingdom of God is built. Though Christ has risen from the dead, He still notices our
sorrows and is afflicted in our afflictions. Bearing the scars of the nails in his hands, the
Lord stands before us as the reason for our hope, even in our darkest of days. Having
taken all our pain and suffering to himself, the risen Lord has become the reason for our
joy and the anchor of our souls. Accompanied by Christ we will discover new horizons,
open new doors towards people and find new ways of being at home with ourselves.
Lord, open our hearts to experience the reality of your resurrection.
Refresh those who have grown weary and open the hearts of all people to
the newness of life that your resurrection brings.