Fourth station
The Risen Christ on the road to Emmaus


P  We adore, O Risen Christ, and we bless you. 

A  Because by your resurrection you have given life to the world.

R  From the Gospel according to Luke (Lk 24,13-19.25-27)
<That very day two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them. But their eyes were kept from recognising him. And he said to them, "What is this conversation which you are holding  with each other as you walk?" And they stood still, looking sad. Then one of them, named Cleopas, answered him, "Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that had happened there in these days?"  (…) And he said to them, "O foolish men, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?" And beginning with Moses and all the prophets, he interpreted to them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.>

G1 "I am the road", said Jesus. He himself is God's road to the man, that crosses the dark paths of the humanity lacerated inside and frayed on outside. Man with wavering step meets the sure stride of Christ on the road to Emmaus on the morning of the day of the resurrection. The Risen Christ, God's road toward the man, now becomes the man's road towards God. It was the day of the light, and the disciples remained blind. It was the day of joy, and the disciples remained sad. It was the day of the Resurrection, and the disciples remained like dead. God brings man back on his roads because the man is his priority. Jesus is God unrecognised at Emmaus and becomes our travelling companion. He doesn't break  our window-panes  but knocks at the door, awaits, enters, listens and asks questions. Then as patient teacher he explains, or rather  reveals himself.

G2 Contemporary people full of riches and comforts are crushed by the weight of sadness. Yet there is a great difference between the motive for the sadness of the two of Emmaus and that of his disciples of today. The first two were sad because their Master was dead; we remain sad, even knowing he is alive. We remain  paralysed in front of all the events. We have missed the main point. God follows us on our roads, he takes care of us, picks us up when we fail, surprises us with his love, he understands us, and we still don't trust him. With the two disciples, Jesus pretended he had to continue the journey. The pretences of God become a stimulus for the man. The silence of God is also expressed when we take another road without him, in arousing feelings of opposition, of uneasiness, of disappointment .

A  Rejoice, O Virgin Mother Mary:
    Christ is risen, Alleluia.

P Stay with us, Jesus: it is drawing late. We will give you a shelter. We will give you a dish. We will give you warmth. We will give you love. Stay with us, Lord:  the shade of doubt and anxiety weighs on the heart of every man. Stay with us, Lord: and we will be in company with you, and that is all we need. Stay with us, Lord, because it is growing late. And make us witnesses to your resurrection.
A  Amen.