Henri J. M. Nouwen, who died in 1996, was a Dutch priest and the pastor of L'Arche Daybreak Community in Toronto. He was a prolific writer and explorer of the devotional heart of Christianity. His favorite spiritual practice was celebrating the Eucharist each day with others or even alone. This gift book edition of a work originally published in 1994 contains Nouwen's meditation on the Eucharistic life with a full-fledged interpretation of the story of the disciples on their way to Emmaus from Jerusalem after the crucifixion (Luke 24:13-35). He interprets this drama as being about loss, presence, invitation, communion, and mission.
Nouwen finds in the breaking of the bread the human experiences of sadness and loss, attentiveness and invitation, intimacy and engagement. Both are keys to Jesus as God-for-us, God-with-us, and God-within-us. Nouwen concludes: "To celebrate the Eucharist and to live a Eucharistic life has everything to do with gratitude." The artwork in the book is by Duccio di Buoninsegna from the Museo dell'Opera Metropolitana, Siena, Italy.