17th February 1946.
Jesus is once again on the way. Facing south He walks along the meanderings of the river, looking for someone who may ferry Him across. His apostles are all around Him, discussing the events of the few days spent in Solomon's village and in his house. From what I gather, they remained there until the news of Jesus' presence there spread in hostile surroundings, and when that happened, they left, entrusting old Ananias, now serene in his no longer desolate poverty, with the care of the house, which had just been set in order again.
« Let us hope that their present mood may last» says Bartholomew.
« If we come back here often, as the Master says, we will keep them in the same frame of mind» replies Judas of Alphaeus.
« He was weeping, poor old soul! He had become fond of us...» says Andrew, who is also deeply moved.
« And I liked his last speech. He spoke as a wise man, Master, didn't he?» says James of Zebedee.
« He spoke as a holy man, I would say!» exclaims Thomas.
« Yes, he did. And I will bear in mind his desire» replies Jesus.
« What did he say exactly? I had gone with John to tell Michael's mother to remember to do what the Master had told her, so I do not know» says the Iscariot.
« He said: “Lord, if You happen to go through the village of my daughter-in-law, tell her that I bear her no grudge and that I am happy that I am no longer forsaken, because thus the judgement of God will not be so severe on her. Tell her to bring up my grandchildren in the faith of the Messiah, so that I will have them with me in Heaven, and as soon as I am in the peace of God, I will pray for them and for their good health.” And I will tell her. I will look for the woman and I will tell her because it is the right thing to do» says Jesus.
« Not one word of reproach! On the contrary he is happy that the woman's sin is no longer so grave, since he is not dying of starvation or dereliction. He is admirable!» remarks James of Alphaeus.
« But will the fault of the daughter-in-law really diminish in the eyes of God? That is what I would like to know!» says Judas of Alphaeus.
The opinions are conflicting. Matthew asks Jesus: « What is Your opinion, Master? Will the situation remain as before or will it change?»
« It will change...»
« See... I was right!» exclaims Thomas triumphantly.
But Jesus beckons to them to let Him speak and He says: « It will change for the old man, also in Heaven as it changed on the Earth because of his indulgent kindness. It will not change for the woman. Her sin will always cry in the eyes of God. Only if she should repent, His severe judgement may change. And I will tell her.»
« Where does she live?»
« At Masada, with her brothers.»
« And do You wish to go as far as that?»
« Those places are to be evangelized as well...»
« And what about Kerioth?»
« We will come back to Kerioth from Masada, and we will go to Juttah, Hebron, Bethzur, Bether, and we shall be back in Jerusalem for Pentecost.»
« Masada is one of Herod's places...»
« What does it matter? It is a fortress. But he is not there. And even if he were!... It will not be the presence of a man to prevent Me from being the Saviour.»
« Where shall we cross the river?»
« Near Gilgal. From there we will go along the coast, following the mountains. The nights are cool and the new moon of Civ is bright in the serene sky.»
« If we are going through those places, why do we not go to the mountain where You fasted? It is fair that everybody should become acquainted with it» says Matthew.
« We shall go there as well. But there is a boat. Negotiate the price so that we may cross to the other side.»