Easter 3, year A – Shrine Mont

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Title Sermon Date Liturgical Scripture
Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany, Year A February 9, 2014 Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany, Year A Isaiah 58:1-12, 1 Corinthians 2:1-16, Matthew 5:13-20
The Presentation, Year A February 2, 2014 Presentation in the Temple, Year A Luke 2:22-40
Third Sunday after the Epiphany, Year A January 26, 2014 Third Sunday after the Epiphany, Year A Matthew 4:12-23
Second Sunday after the Epiphany, Year A January 19, 2014 Second Sunday after the Epiphany Isaiah 49:1-7, Psalm 40:1-12, John 1:29-42
First Sunday after the Epiphany, Year A January 12, 2014 First Sunday after the Epiphany, Year A Isaiah 42:1-9, Psalm 29, Matthew 3:13-17
The Epiphany, Year A January 6, 2014 Epiphany, Year A Matthew 2:1-12
Second Sunday After Christmas, Year A January 5, 2014 Second Sunday after Christmas, Year A Psalm 84, Ephesians 1:3-6, 15-19a, Matthew 2:13-15, 19-23
Christmas Eve December 24, 2013 Christmas Eve, 2013 Luke 2:1-20
Third Sunday in Advent, Year A December 15, 2013 Third Sunday in Advent, Year A Isaiah 35:1-10, Matthew 11:2-11
First Sunday in Advent, Year A -The Circle of the Church Year December 1, 2013 Advent 1, Year A Isaiah 2:1-5, Matthew 24:36-44
Last Sunday after Pentecost, Christ the King, Yr C November 24, 2013 Last Sunday after Pentecost, Christ the King, Year C Luke 23:33-43
Twenty Sixth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C November 17, 2013 Proper 28, Year C Malachi 4:1-2a, 2 Thessalonians 3:6-13, Luke 21:5-10
Twenty Fifth Sunday After Pentecost, Year C November 10, 2013 Proper 27, Year C Job 19:23-27a, Luke 20:27-38
Twenty Second Sunday After Pentecost, Year C October 20, 2013 Proper 24C Psalm 121, 2 Timothy 3:14-4:5, Luke 18:1-8
Twenty First Sunday After Pentecost, Year C October 13, 2013 Proper 23, Year C 2 Kings 5:1-3, 7-15c, Psalm 111, Luke 17:11-19

 

Easter 3, year A – Shrine Mont

Sermon Date:May 4, 2014

Scripture: Luke 24: 13-35

Liturgy Calendar: Third Sunday of Easter, Year A


"Supper at Emmaus" – HeQi

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Would you open your door to anyone who knocked on it? 

Early in the morning?  Late at night?

To homeless people, drug addicts and dealers, prostitutes, people with nowhere to go? 

And not only OPEN the door, but also invite these people in

And not only invite them in,

But feed them,

And not only feed them,

But have them stay with you,

Sometimes for years?

Leah and Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove , who live in Durham, North Carolina, have been welcoming strangers into their lives for over ten years now, and Jonathan has written about some of their experiences in his book, Strangers at my Door, the Story of Finding Jesus in Unexpected Guests. 

Jonathan and Leah are much like the monks of St Benedict’s time, who treated one another and welcomed every guest as Jesus himself.   St Benedict believed that we should see Jesus in the face of every person that we meet and act accordingly, being both the givers and receivers of grace and love toward one another.

And so they created a community called Rutba House.   They  welcome anyone who comes to the door. In spite of the inevitable heartaches and problems they’ve experienced, because of course there have been plenty of those, Jonathan and Leah have found the risen Christ right there with them in these unlikely guests. 

In a less radical way, Shrine Mont is something like Rutba House.  All are welcome.  And our churches, which in many ways are strangers to one another, have also been practicing Benedict’s hospitality by joining together in this time away in our programs, in the dining room, and in our worship.

We too have found the Risen Christ in this place. 

In today’s gospel, two people left Jerusalem and  headed out for the village of Emmaus on the first day of the week toward the end of the day.  They were in shock, and broken hearted because of what they had witnessed, the death of a good man, betrayed by his own people, a man they had hoped would be the one to redeem Israel. 

And on their way,  they met a stranger.

Or rather, a stranger met them. 

And chose to walk along with them, entering into their grief and pain and disappointment;  willing to listen to their story, willing to take the time to help them place their story in the great story of God’s love for them since the beginning of creation.   

And so as evening fell, and darkness neared, the two returned this favor of hospitality and invited the stranger to stay with them.

And so he went in to stay with them. 

And because it was the end of the day, and they were hungry, they sat down to eat.

And the stranger  took the bread in his hands and held it.

And then he blessed it.

And then he broke it.

And then he gave it to them.

In this simple act, one that all of them had participated in thousands of times, the breaking and sharing of bread, Jesus, the Risen Christ,  broke open the meaning of his whole life for these two who had now become his guests. 

Because this is what Jesus did while he was among us.

He took up his life among us, and lived it as one of us.

And Jesus lived a blessed life, completely in tune with God, turning to God, following God’s will for him, living true to what it means to love one another, even when that love meant dying on a cross.

Jesus lived a broken open life, holding onto nothing for himself, holding out all he had to all who needed it—God’s healing unconditional love. 

Jesus was not some sort of fancy artisan loaf of bread that you’d pay a fortune for at a bakery. 

Jesus was just plain old nourishing bread, truly Wonder Bread.   

Bread taken up, blessed, broken, and given. 

God’s gift to us.

We rejoice in this gift of God, taken up, blessed, broken and given, and we receive it with gratitude. 

But that’s not the end of the story.    

Now it’s our turn.

Now it’s our turn to welcome strangers into our midst,

to share the story of God’s great love for us and for all of creation throughout time and eternity.

Now it’s our turn to turn our hearts to one another.

It’s our turn to be bread.

Our turn to let God take us,

Bless us,

And to break us. 

To hold us out to a hungry world.

Amen.   

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