I am always struck by the Gospels that are read after the Resurrection. We find in Luke that the disciples were walking away from Jerusalem to Emmaus when they met Jesus and failed to recognize Him. Jesus opened their recognition of Him by referring to the Scriptures about Him and in the breaking of the bread. Their hope in Him had been restored.
In the Gospel of John on Easter Sunday night, Jesus appears to the apostles. He says “Peace be with you”. “ Receive the Holy Spirit whose sins you forgive they are forgiven them and whose sins you retain they are retained.” Thomas is absent and later must prove his faith in the risen Lord by touching his wounds. Faith is restored.
The words of Jesus that are repeated in the Gospels are “Peace be with you”. “ Do you have anything to eat?” (Jesus seems to be always hungry). “Believe”.
Are these words of Jesus relevant also in my life today? Is Jesus speaking these words to me in the time and space in which I live? I truly believe He is. The context of our living is different from the first century but the message of Jesus is the same. Jesus is truly risen from the dead and is alive in our lives. Our faith and hope in the risen Jesus enables us to believe, to touch His wounds. Our faith in the risen Jesus enables us to live in peace and bring the peace of Christ to others. Our faith in the risen Jesus enables us to share meals with each other. It enables us to receive Jesus in the Eucharist and to take His love and life of service to others.
Peace be with you!
Sr. Barbara Woeste, OSB