Emmaus Walk

Fr. Martin and I took an afternoon “Emmaus Walk” through the village of Blanchisseuse, Trinidad. 

We passed small quaint old houses, million-dollar beachside resorts, COVID-19 lonely village shops, a Catholic, the graves befriend overgrown grass and foliage and sporing an an upside down sign marked “Our Lady of Mount Carmel RC Cemetery”, half-opened village bars with few patrons, roosters, hens, and chicks enjoying the freedom of vehicle-less roads, families casually strolling, car wheels kissing the bottom of water-filled potholes, and a fishing beach freely accommodating unmasked fishermen liming and/or cleaning their fishing nets. 

Blanchisseuse Beach

We stopped and limed briefly on a concrete bench overlooking a picturesque 80-foot cliff whose base was caressed by the sea.  We even passed a street sign marked “Gordon Bay Road”. “It this really a road?” I asked myself. It was simply narrow concrete steps winding down to a beach.  Yep. Gordon Bay ROAD. Fr. Martin stopped, read, I suppose, pondered on the words of a huge colourful sign showing the photo of a handsome young man who had died. 

While nobody unexpectedly appeared beside us and asked…..

“What are you discussing as you walk along?”

…..we did encounter Christ-like figures along the route. At the start of the walk, a masked man walking in the opposite direction noticed that we were unmasked, and informed us that the police were up the road. 

Ooops! We exhaled, forgetting our mask. We retreated hastily to retrieve our masks.  

As we walked along, we were greeted by passers-by, men sitting on the steps of the houses having a drink, and car drivers slowing down to hail us.  Not only did we encounter Christ-like figures in the village people, but we became Christ to others.

We stopped to greet the parish priest, Fr. Ken Assing who briefly talked about Church ministry in COVID-19 times. 

In the words of Joan Chittister, this Emmaus walk taught me that:

All life is permeated by the Spirit of life. That is its base. Even at this level of existence there is the reality beyond reality. We live, even here and now, within its arch. We see by its light. We hear its’ vibrations in everything we do.

As we walked, talked and observed, we felt the vibrations of the Spirit in the throbbing heart of the people of Blanchisseuse. 

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