by Sr Julie Myers, OSF
The gospel assigned for this past Sunday was Luke’s account of the two disciples walking the road to Emmaus. It’s one of my favorite stories. Here we have two of Jesus’ disciples trying to wrap their minds around the recent chaos and death of their dear friend. I love that friendship held them together and strength came from their conversation—a conversation so deep they didn’t even recognize Jesus when he joined them.
This particular reading causes a happy flashback, as it reminds me of the many times I walked the roads of my childhood with my dear friend, Tina. We met in Catholic grade school at age 6. It was a small country school and the very place I met the Sylvania Franciscan Sisters. Tina and I lived about a half mile from each other. During our teen years, we took turns walking each other home and along the way, we talked about many things that at the time seemed so important.
Like these two disciples, Tina and I so often missed the beauty that surrounded us. We were not aware of the holy presence that remained near every step of the way up and down that road. We were too focused on our own chatter to realize that God was right there wanting to share and explain it to us.
Eventually we were separated by life’s challenges and our own choices—attended different high schools, developed different interests and simply lost that daily contact we once had. Oh, we would bump into each other on occasion but it wasn’t the same. Our friendship lost its flare, but not its embers!!
Interesting, Tina and I ended up with careers in health care and one day we met in the hospital stairwell. The sight of each other shocked us into silence and in an instant, the bread of life was broken open by that same sacred spirit who walked the country road with us. In our adult life where we have come to realize the true gift of our past, we work at connecting and keeping in touch more. In fact, we are meeting for supper and conversation later this week.
Remember, friendship is a priceless gift that needs nurturing, time, attention and love. What old or weakened friendship of yours needs attention?