Michigan Bishop Leads His Flock on the Road to Emmaus
Lansing Bishop Earl Boyea’s New Initiative Seeks to Deepen Love for Christ in the Eucharist
When Bishop Earl Boyea’s new apostolic initiative, “On the Road to Emmaus,” launched in the Diocese of Lansing on June 11, the Solemnity of Corpus Christi, there were already more than 20,000 subscribers waiting to receive his weekly multimedia communications. Perhaps the spiritual leader of the Lansing, Michigan, diocese had earned the respect of Catholics in his diocese with other, earlier projects: Last year, his initiative “Disciples Together on the Way With Bishop Boyea” helped his flock to incorporate various norms of Christian piety into daily living. And in 2021, the Lansing diocese embarked on a “Bishop’s Year of the Bible,” which took subscribers through the story of salvation as told in Sacred Scripture.
During this year of Eucharistic revival, Bishop Boyea’s plan is for each week’s communication to include teaching, inspiration and a challenge relating to the Eucharist — including a step-by-step explanation of the key moments of the Holy Mass.
The evangelist Luke tells the story (Luke 24:13-35) of two disciples who were traveling along the road to Emmaus, feeling downcast about the death of Jesus on the Cross three days earlier, and the apparent theft of his body from the tomb. As they walked and talked, they met the risen Christ traveling on the same road. At first the two men — Cleopas and another man — didn’t recognize him, but he began to explain to them from the Scriptures why it was necessary that the Messiah should suffer these things and then enter into his glory. Beginning with Moses and the Prophets, Jesus explained what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself. Then when the disciples invited him to remain with them in Emmaus and share their dinner, Jesus agreed. Sitting with them at the table, he took bread, gave thanks, and broke it, and gave it to them; only then were their eyes opened and they recognized him.
Why is Bishop Boyea’s year-long evangelistic program titled “On the Road to Emmaus?” Well, the story of those two downcast disciples has always been the bishop’s favorite episode in St. Luke’s Gospel, he says. “My prayer for the next year,” Bishop Boyea explained,
as we travel On the Road to Emmaus is that we too will acquire a greater knowledge of our Risen Lord as he reveals himself to us in the opening of the Scriptures and the breaking of the bread, such that our hearts will also burn with love for Him in whom we find our greatest meaning, peace and happiness.
Parishes in the Lansing diocese will begin to follow Bishop Boyea “on the road to Emmaus” this week, but others are also invited to participate. You can watch the first video and subscribe to “On the Road to Emmaus with Bishop Boyea” at the Diocese of Lansing website. Interested viewers can also subscribe by texting RTE to 84576.