4th Sunday of Easter Year B - 29/4/2012 - Gospel: Jn 10:11-18
Different faces of Christ
After arising from the death and before going to the Father, the Risen Christ Jesus has appeared to his Apostles and women friends many times and at various locations.  Each time Jesus appeared to them disguised in a new manner and each time his friends recognized Him differently. The ability to recognize Jesus includes remembering what He had taught and listening to his voice. It is observing the way He gives thank to God and doing what He asked them to do. The Risen Christ Jesus was above time and space and freed from restriction of his movements. He would have no trouble entering a house through a closed door. He would get from point A to point B in no time. He would reach the intended destination before a person was able to inform friends of His coming.

The Risen Christ appeared to the women who were weeping at the empty tomb. They thought He was a gardener. They recognized Jesus in the face of a worker, a gardener. Jesus then appeared to the two Apostles who were on the way to Emmaus. The recognized him as a companion or a pedestrian who happened to be travelling on the same road. The two disciples walked with Jesus, listened to Him. They thought he was the only innocent person who knew nothing of what was just happening in Jerusalem. They asked Him to stay overnight with them because it was nearly the end of the day. That evening He held the bread said the blessing and broke it and their eyes were opened to recognize Him Lk 24,13ff. Jesus appeared at Jerusalem to the eleven Apostles who locked themselves behind the closed door for fear of the Jews. They thought He was a ghost. Jesus showed the Apostles and particularly Thomas his hands, side and the holes where the nails made Lk 24,36. This made Thomas confessed: My Lord and my God.

Jesus then appeared to the seven Apostles again when they were washing their net after a fruitless night fishing. He appeared as a beach goer having a stroll in the early morning. He jelled out to them: have you caught anything friends? They said no. He asked them to cast the net on the right side of the boat. They caught a boat full of fish and instantly knew that it was the Lord Jn 21. The Apostles knew Him for obeying what he asked to do.

We have seen different faces of the same Lord. It is the face of a gardener. It is the face of a traveller. It is the face of a stranger. It is the face of the beach holiday walker. It is the face of a companion. It is the face of a friend. It is the face of the sick person whose hands were broken and side was torn from a spear. The appearances are in corresponding to his teaching in the gospel of Matthew 25, 31ff on the parable of the Last Judgement.

I was hungry and you feed me, thirsty and you gave me a drink; I was a stranger and you received me in your homes, naked and you clothed me. I was sick and you took care of me.

After the resurrection the Risen Lord identifies himself with people of all walks of life. The man Jesus from Nazareth identifies with each one of us and in each one of the believer we find his love and face hidden in our lives.