As they approached the village to which they were going,he gave the impression that he was going on farther. But they urged him, “Stay with us, for it is nearly evening and the day is almost over.” So he went in to stay with them. And it happened that, while he was with them at table, he took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them. With that their eyes were opened and they recognized him…

Luke 24:13-35

 

The experience of the gifts of the Spirit are nothing else but manifestations of the living presence of the Risen Jesus in our lives.
Fr. Cecil Azzopardi, SJ, 2013 Ignatian Immersion Course, 2013

 

The Easter Octave tastes and feels like a feast. Each day offers another divine treat. Today, Emmaus.

Many of the books I read explain that the two disciples walking to Emmaus were in fact a couple, a man, Cleopas, and his wife, forever nameless like so many women in the Bible. 

Paul and I, then, are forever returning home, discouraged and lost, now that we feel cheated by the death of our Master, ex-future King of the Jews, hung on a cross like a criminal. 

We pour our hearts out to this stranger who drew near and now walks with us. When we grow silent, emptied out of all thoughts and feeling numb, the stranger starts talking. And he talks and he talks. He fills us with a fire we have not felt since that last meal we shared with Jesus. 

As we reach home, we invite him to stay with us. Then, you know the story, the stranger takes the bread, says the blessing, breaks it, and gives it to us. This is when we understand who has been with us all this time. And he disappears! Oh, Godde… 

In an instant, we are up again, grab our walking stick,s and walk back, our hearts filled with joy and wonder, the seven miles we have just finished with ‘Him’. All the way to Jerusalem, we repeat what he has told us going to Emmaus. Every so often, we stop to catch our breath and exclaim, ‘He is Risen’. He was not a hoax! Alleluiah!

We each have those Emmaus moments after we meet someone we know, or do not know. I can think of two different scenarios. When walking the Camino, every so often someone catches up with us and strikes up a conversation, and we engage in sharing our lives and our faith. It is an Emmanuel moment, Godde-with-Us. 

Or again, I can think of two or three women friends whom I meet for a coffee or a bite to eat. We always end up talking about Godde’s presence in our lives. Once back at home, I realize that my heart was burning as we were sharing stories of how Godde moves through our daily life. These moments, these friends, are Godde’s gifts to me, to us.

Can you think of specific friends with whom you have Emmaus moments?

Art: Arcabas, Emmaüs

 

 

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