The two disciples are leaving Jerusalem. They had been caught up in the experience of following Jesus, and they were devastated by his crucifixion.
Moreover, they were undoubtedly frightened by the prospect of what might happen to them as followers of the executed master.
On their way from Jerusalem to Emmaus, they have an unusual encounter.
The man they find themselves walking with seems to understand much about the scriptures, but they aren’t able to make the connection between what he says and who he is.
It is only in welcoming him into their house and sharing a meal with him that they realize who it is they are facing: it is Jesus, the risen Lord. So moved are they by the encounter that they turn around and head back to Jerusalem, to join up with the other disciples but also to face risk and uncertainty.
They may very well have headed straight into martyrdom.
The Easter event can also turn around our lives. It can cause us to “rise and come forth into the light of day,” but we must be prepared for the risk and uncertainty such a conversion would entail.
For the Church, evangelizing means bringing the good news into all the strata of humanity, and through its influence transforming humanity from within and making it new. ...
The purpose of evangelization is (an) interior change, and if it has to be expressed in one sentence the best way to stating it would be to say that the Church evangelizes when she seeks to convert, solely through the divine power of the message she proclaims, both the personal and collective consciences of people, the activities in which they engage, and the lives and concrete milieux which are theirs.
Pope Paul VI, Evangelii Nuntiandi, 1975: 18.