Of all of the Gospel passages my favorite is the road to Emmaus. It is in many ways the most Catholic passage in all scripture and in a sense carries the most important symbol to us thousands of years later.
Consider. We have two disciples on the road to Emmaus. Men who had traveled with Jesus, seen Jesus do wonders from healing the sick to feeding the five thousand. They have just been told of the empty tomb and still have not put it all together when Jesus comes up to them and despite years of knowing him personally they don’t recognize him.
They walk with him and can’t seem him, they talk with him but can’t see him, he even explains every single passage of scripture that covered his life and death and they still didn’t recognize him for who and what he was.
When do they finally recognize him: At the Eucharist:
And it happened that, while he was with them at table, he took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them.Luke 24:30-31
With that their eyes were opened and they recognized him, but he vanished from their sight.
Think about it. They lived and traveled with him and didn’t get it, they saw all the great works, and didn’t get it, they even had every single passage in scripture referring to him explained to them and they didn’t get it.
But when they saw the Eucharist, their eyes were opened.
It is highly unlikely that any of us will physically see Jesus, that we will witness him laying hands on anyone and healing them, or multiplying loaves and fishes, nor is it likely that we shall have the scriptures interpreted to us in person by him except in the form of the priest representing him.
But at every time we go to mass and every time we go to adoration we will be able to see what the disciples at Emmaus saw.
As we leave Lent and the Easter Triduum behind may we like the disciples at Emmaus recognize Jesus in the breaking of the bread now and forevermore.