Perhaps there is better way to explain the experience the focolarine had at the beginning – living, as they soon learnt to say, ‘with Jesus in their midst’ – than the words of His disciples after they had met the Risen Lord at Emmaus: “Didn’t our hearts burn within in us, when he talked with as we walked along the road?” (Lk 24,32). Jesus is always Jesus, and we know from Scripture that when He is present, even only spiritually, He is still Jesus and, Christ’s love burns within our hearts: life. When He is recognised we are moved to say: “Stay with us Lord, evening falls” (Lk 24,29).
The experience of the disciples at Emmaus is essential for all those involved in the spirituality of unity. Nothing has value within the Movement if the promised presence of Jesus in their midst is not constantly sought – “Where two or three are united in my name, there am I in the midst of them” (Mt 18,20), this presence enlivens, widens horizons, consoles and draws charity and truth.