Scripture selection: Luke 24:30
When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight.
After the resurrection, Jesus appeared numerous times to his disciples. He comforted them, taught them, and commissioned them to carry on the work he had begun. There is one particular appearance, however, that is particularly striking.
Luke records that Jesus appeared to two of the disciples who were traveling along discussing what had happened to Jesus, and to them. When Jesus first appears to them – and begins walking beside them – they are somehow kept from recognizing them. He begins to teach them, opening their minds and their hearts to the meaning of all that has happened. When they arrive at their destination, they ask this wise stranger to stay with them a bit longer. He does and they eat together.
It is at that moment, in the breaking of the bread and the sharing of the cup, that they recognize the risen Lord. Then he vanishes from their sight.
What a powerful story.
Reminiscent of the Lord’s Supper, of the great symbolism found in the broken bread and poured out wine, here Jesus is only recognized in the sharing of a holy meal once again.
Two thousand years later, believers all around the world – whenever they celebrate a Mass, or the Eucharist, or the Lord’s Supper, or Communion – recognize the presence of the risen Lord in their midst.
It is a powerful aspect of the faith and it calls us all to see Him, recognize Him, give thanks for Him, and most of all remember Him.
In the bread and the cup – where two or three or a thousand are gathered in His name – there He is with them – with us – once again.