Talking About Church Stuff
Being turned by Jesus on the Road to Emmaus
April 26, 2020
Father David Jones
Today is a happy day for Jesus
Because two of his disciples finally got it.
They were on the road to Emmaus
Walking and talking about church stuff
That’s what we, the church, are supposed to do.
Small minds talk about people
Average minds talk about events
Great minds talk about ideas
Minds stayed on Jesus talk about church stuff.
We are supposed to talk about church stuff
All on the news is corona virus stuff
All in the prayer should be healing stuff, saving stuff, living stuff, sharing stuff because all that
stuff is church stuff.
And when we are caught talking about church stuff
In our private prayer
In our common prayer
In our parish organization meetings
And definitely in our conversations with the pastor
When we are talking about church stuff
And Jesus appeared on the road
And started walking with them
And got all into their conversation
Because it was His Father’s conversation.
Church it happens every time
Yesterday, today and tomorrow
When we are talking about church stuff
And doing church stuff
Jesus appears in our midst
And leads our conversation
Leads our prayer
Leads our work.
If Jesus doesn’t appear
We are not talking about church stuff
We may be talking loud
We may be speaking our minds
We may be making a point
We may be having our say
But if we are not talking about church stuff
We are missing the opportunity God has provided.
Pandemics, wars, death, disease, and destruction are all moments to talk about church stuff because sometimes in life,
You have to have a funeral. And you need good religion in order to plan a good funeral.
But so are times of birth and life, moments of peace and joy, clean water and clean air, music,
laughter and love, because sometimes in life, you have to plan a celebration.
And if we are not talking about church stuff, we will plan every event as a reception, just come,
eat, drink, be happy and be merry
And we will miss the opportunity to join in life with God and what God is doing now.
My niece told my nephew about a show on Netflix that she highly recommended. I asked her why she didn’t tell me about the show?
She responded, “Because you are a priest.” I responded, “What?”
She continued by explaining that it’s a show about a woman who is a drug king pin, I guess she would be a drug queen pin.
I told my niece you need to get back to church
Because according to your way of thinking Netflix is going to limit you with people you respect
and entertain you with murder, drugs and crimes – things that snatch the life out of you.
Church Jesus is not going to come and talk to you about your favorite TV shows, but he’s got an
inquiring mind because he’s got to report back to a higher power and when Our Father ask
Our Brother, what are they talking about, he’s not going to lie for us.
He died for us, but he will not lie for us.
In the mystagogia, you move from talking about the pain in your house
The pain in your joints
The pain in your relationship
To talking about Jesus.
You know the smart kids play where in the world is Waldo?
Well the smart Christians ask where in the world is Jesus?
That is mystagogia!
When you start wondering and wandering
Looking for Jesus
Where is the Lord in all this pain?
Where is the Lord when these bills are all piled up?
Where is the Lord when this man keeps not doing right by me?
The mystagogia kicks in when you can be your honest self,
Not the polite version of who you are.
And you can honestly say
Father, I need help, because my sister has injured me and I need to find a way to forgive her.
And Jesus steps in and says I am the way.
Father, I stretch my hand to Thee, no other help do I know.
And Jesus steps in and says take my hand
Father, I need Thee every hour, especially when my child tells me that same lie he has been
telling all of his life.
And Jesus steps in and says I am the truth.
Father, I am weak, I am worn, I am down, I am lost
And Jesus steps in and says, I am the light.
When we allow our religion to kick in
Then Jesus kicks in
And allows our baptism to kick in
And that is when the conversations in life are changed and changing.
That’s when the battle is over.
That’s when the breakthrough happens
That’s when the doors are opened
That’s when we put aside the bad things
And take hold of the good things
That’s when we stop contributing to our own demise
And start contributing to our sisters and brothers in Christ Jesus
Redistributing our energy so we
First give honor to God
And watch Netflix when God gets through with me.
They felt like going on
And that is the effect that the Lord is always hoping for
The Lord is speaking to somebody right here and right now
And He is saying
I want you to feel like going on
We want Jesus to feel our pain
And let us come into this house and
Sing nobody knows the trouble I’ve seen but Jesus
And Jesus nods to the choir
And gives approval to the chorus
And then looks to the choir master
Let’s move on
Let’s change the tune
Because the Lord is not here to review troubles
The Lord is here to view the assembly that wants to see what the end shall be.
Jesus sings I feel like going on
And that is what the Lord wanted for the disciples on the road to Emmaus
And that is what the Lord wants for you and me
To feel like going on.
When we feel like going on
We stop talking about the same old problems
And we talk about a brand-new day
When we feel like going on
We stop visiting yesterday
And start dance, dance, dancing all night
So that when joy come in the morning
I don’t look like
I don’t feel like
I am out of church shape
I feel like and look like I’ve been waiting on the Lord
To come by here and sup with me
So, when God gets through with me
I shall come forth like pure gold!
We get communion when the Lord comes
Not when the priest comes.
I have told this story a million times because it helps me understand church.
We were at the end of Mass and big, old, tall Nigel Lyles started his own procession to the
And I looked for an usher to tackle him, but no usher was paying attention and Nigel came right
up on me and whispered
I need communion.
And I said, we just had communion.
He said I stepped out of Mass and I missed communion
But I can’t leave without communion.
So, I got up and gave Nigel communion
But clearly, he received Jesus.
There we were having a conversation about church stuff
And Jesus came, not by ritual, not by design, not by accident,
But because people had been talking to a teenager about church stuff,
He received the risen Lord and would not leave without him.
Church let’s not miss the irony in today’s story.
Two people were going the wrong way
Because God was not through with them yet.
But even though they were going the wrong way,
They were talking about church stuff and Jesus came
And turned them around
And brought them back to Jerusalem
Brought them back to where God was doing things
That would change their lives and change the world.
As always, let us look forward to when from our exile, God brings us home again, via Zoom, via
Pace, via CTA, via Uber, doesn’t matter how he does it.
What matters is that God has given us time to talk about church stuff.
Let’s be sure we don’t social distance from God
Let’s just use our cell phones, computers and cable channels differently.
That show about the queen pin drug dealer could have had some church scenes in it. The only
reason it didn’t is because the writers weren’t talking about church stuff.
It could have been a better show with Jesus in it. Thank God all we have to do is receive His
Son into our homes and our hearts in order to have a better life.
Happy Easter! This is the Season of Rising! We are not waiting on a day without disease; We are
waiting on our life time with Risen Christ. Alleluia!