In some years, this weekend the gospel reading on Sunday is the story of the two disappointed disciples walking away from Jerusalem to a village, Emmaus, & being joined by Jesus – initially unrecognised – but later in the story recognised as he shared a meal with them. (Luke 24.13-35).
In fact, this year we have a different Resurrection appearance on Sunday but it opens with the final but very significant sentence of the Emmaus story: ‘The disciples told their story of what had happened on the road & how they had recognised Jesus at the breaking of the bread’. That Emmaus story lends itself to much reflection & pointers for us in our lives. So we have chosen a couple of excerpts which may help that process. We hope you will find them helpful.
Our blessing this week is Marty Haugen’s ‘Dona Nobis Pacem’ from ‘The Song and the Silence’. We may like to remember the Royal Family today as the funeral takes place – praying for them as they grieve, & for any need there is in the family for reconciliation.
With our love
Three observations on the Emmaus story:
The story wouldn’t be a story if these two disciples hadn’t welcomed the stranger into their conversation & then later into their lodging.
It is a very REAL story, in that the stranger helps them to make sense of something in their lives.
After Christ has ‘disappeared’ from their company, they retrace their steps in order to tell the other disciples about their encounter with the risen Lord.
Let us pray:
Risen Lord Jesus, be present with us now. Help us to be open to you in the stranger’s guise. Come alongside us, & help us to find new purpose in the painful & seemingly wasted experiences in our lives. Give us friends & fellow disciples with whom we can share our experience of your risen presence. Amen.
Two friends on our way on the dusty road:
talking, listening, sharing pain & confusion.
Another walks with us – unknown –
looks into our eyes, listens to lost hopes & wild rumours.
He speaks; we hear the story of salvation
as though for the first time, as we travel on.
We have arrived, he wants to go further – on his way;
we ask him to stay, as dusk falls on the dusty road.
We go indoors, sit, tired at a table to share a meal.
He takes bread, blesses it, breaks & offers it to us who then see who is our companion – but he has gone.
We remember the journey, the words we heard, the everyday presence of road, table, & broken bread –
we know the news that must be shared.
We cannot stay put, but, here & now,
set out, back along the dusty road:
two friends on God’s way.
Jan Sutch Pickard.