18 Apr Holy Thursday
Posted at 13:27h in Uncategorized
Liturgically, our readings today are an Anamnesis…they are a remembering…not a remembering of emotion and sentimentality…but making present and real the mighty works of God.
The First Reading is a remembrance of the original Passover… when the firstborn of the Israelites were spared from the hand of death that God had bestowed upon those who had rejected him…a remembrance that continues to this day.
In the Second Reading, Paul proclaims to the Corinthians that, ‘as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes.’ The remembrance of Jesus’ Passion and Death continues.
In the Gospel, the Last Supper is the Passover meal. For that meal a lamb is selected. The lamb is served for the meal, and its blood is placed over the doorpost. Tradition is remembered.
But on this Special Night, a transition occurs. Rather than a sacrifice of the blood of another — the lamb — that is repeated regularly, Jesus becomes the true Lamb of God who sacrificed his blood on Calvary for once and for all…in fulfillment of the proclamation of John the Baptist…a sacrifice for you and me for the sins of all time.
This is the Remembrance of Holy Mass…the institution of the Eucharist and the Priesthood.
But the Supernatural of the Last Supper becomes the Natural of our Spiritual Life.
We live this reality through four great actions — Suffering, Sharing, Relationship, and Service.
Suffering. Jesus must die on the Cross to atone for our sins. He tells you and me that we have to die to ourselves to follow him as a True Disciple. How do we do that? We die to our pride, ego and judgment…the biggest occasions of our sins.
Sharing. Everything we have and everything we are is a Gift from God. Jesus exemplifies the concept of sharing by the self-sacrificing gift of his death on the Cross. He gives his Full Humanity in his Full Divinity. Throughout our Lenten Journey, we have been asked to share our time, talent, and treasure with others… giving of what we have and who we are for others. We do so in fulfillment of the Two Great Commandments…To Love God and To Love Others.
Relationship. We are created for one purpose — to spend eternal life with Our Heavenly Father. Through his Son, God asks us to follow the Commandments, to live a Life of Beatitudes, and to love Him and Others. Jesus models that life for us as he lives his relationship with His Father…to the Cross. We, too, through our Sacramental Life of Reconciliation and Eucharist, purify ourselves, reject our vices, and grow in virtue so that we can achieve the reality of Paul’s Letter — to be ready for Jesus when ‘he comes’ on the Last Day…to return us to Our Heavenly Father.
Service. Jesus proclaims many times that, ‘I did not come to to be served, but to serve.’ At the Last Supper, he serves not only His Body and His Blood, but he is of service to his Apostles as he washes their feet. Tonight, we do that for each other. In service, we turn ourselves inside out…from the all powerful ‘Me’ to the all saving ‘You.’ Our life is reoriented in JOY — Jesus, Others, You — in True Love and True Service.
In living these four great actions, the Last Supper will not only be a Remembrance…it will become a Way TO Life…
+May God Bless You and Keep You+