Two men were travelling from Jerusalem to Emmaus. And as they moved farther and farther away – both in steps and hours – from all that had happened, they began to debrief it together. They went over everything: That triumphant entrance into Jerusalem, with the palm branches, and the donkey! The meal they all had shared once they arrived in the city, the dinner they thought was a celebration – not a goodbye.
Little did we know, a month and a half ago, that we were going to set out on a country-wide dramatic retelling of the Easter story. We’ve all had a little while to get into character now, and suddenly it’s our time to step onto the stage and play the part of the huddled and frightened followers, gathering in their locked home, anxious to leave, worried about what the future will hold.
For the second time in our Gospel, a woman named Mary walks to the tomb of someone she loves. But where Mary of Bethany found her brother still lying in the cold dark, his body deteriorating, Mary of Magdala finds something even more horrifying. The tomb is open, the body gone, even the linen wrappings his followers carefully, tenderly dressed his anointed body in are gone.