That very day, the first day of the week, two of Jesus’ disciples were going to a village seven miles from Jerusalem called Emmaus,
and they were conversing about all the things that had occurred. And it happened that while they were conversing and debating,
Jesus himself drew near and walked with them, but their eyes were prevented from recognizing him. He asked them, “What are you discussing as you walk along?” They stopped, looking downcast. One of them, named Cleopas, said to him in reply, “Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know of the things that have taken place there in these days?” And he replied to them, “What sort of things?”
by Father Greg Friedman, OFM
In human life there’s no substitute for daily, lived experience—no matter how much “book learning” you’ve had. On these Sundays of Easter the Church teaches the newly baptized—and all of us—how to live Christian life day by day. Selections from the First Letter of Peter and the Acts of the Apostles stress our witness to Christ in the real world. The Easter Gospels highlight how the Holy Spirit supports and guides the Church in that task.
Today’s Gospel—perhaps the most powerful of the Resurrection stories—portrays what Christians have experienced in Eucharist since the beginning of the Church. Two disciples—full of grief after the death of Jesus—flee Jerusalem to escape the tragic events of Good Friday. On the road to Emmaus the risen Lord meets them, explains the Scriptures, and they recognize him in the breaking of the bread.
Our experience–like Christians down through the ages—is identical. In the midst of human life—no matter where we find ourselves—Christians gather to share their common needs and gifts, strengths and weaknesses, fears and joys. We break open the Scriptures so that Jesus may teach us. We break the bread and recognize Christ present. From the Eucharistic table we go out as the Body of Christ, ready to witness. In the Sundays that follow, our Scriptures will help us understand the consequences of that witness.
by Father Dan Kroger, OFM
• This week’s first reading (Acts 2:14, 22-33), is about Peter’s preaching in Jerusalem. Can you give a summary of his message?
How does Peter see his job and that of the Apostles?
• In the second reading (1Pt 1:17-21), Peter calls upon believers to conduct themselves with reverence. What does that include?
How does this reading consider Jesus?
• The Gospel tells of another appearance of Jesus after the Resurrection. Where does this happen?
Did the two disciples recognize Jesus right away?
What were they talking to him about while they walked together on the road to Emmaus?
What happened to the two disciples? How did they feel?
What did they do after Jesus ate with them and then disappeared?
by Susan Hines-Brigger
• Go outside and take a walk just like Jesus did with the disciples in the Gospel.
• Have a family discussion about things that are happening in the world today.
• Struggling to find things for your kids to do while you’re staying at home? Download these coloring pages.