Thursday In Holy Week

 

In order for there to be good beginnings there have to be good departings. On his last full day on earth Jesus gives love. He gives it exquisitely. In his tiredness he washes the tired feet of faithful friends. In his generosity he gives bread to his betrayer. In prophetic provision he bequeaths, through shared bread and wine, a sacrament that keeps him always alive to us. In his prayers he places the universal Church in the divine heart. In his anguish in the garden he fights with demons and with doubt, is led away captive to be mocked and tried. He will not sleep tonight. He calls us to watch and pray.

 

Lord, we will watch with you and pray with you.

 

For Jesus, this annual Passover meal was his opportunity to reset the Jews’ one-time deliverance from slavery into the much vaster frame of humanity’s all-time deliverance from godlessness. In a stroke of inspired genius he turned the annual Jewish Passover meal into a memorial – his masterpiece – to make him for ever immortal in the hearts of his people.

 

You are the Bread of Life in whom our deepest hungers are satisfied.

 

 Among early Christians this became a love feast – an agape meal – a sharing of the love of Christ. It is a commemoration: Jesus’ last gestures are re-enacted and remembered. It is a Thanksgiving, a Eucharist. Jesus thanked God for the food and wine. At different stages in the meal the president says: Blessed are you, Lord our God, King of the Universe, who brings bread out of the ground. Blessed are you, King of the Universe, Creator of the fruit of the vine.  It is The Real Presence.

 

 The Apostle Paul wrote: ‘Because there is one loaf of bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the one bread’ (1 Corinthians 10.17). The food we receive is the communication of Jesus’ very own self to us.

 

Thank you that in this sacrament we touch the Tree of the Cross that pours out immortality on the world like a new river from Paradise. By it all things are made alive. O God of compassion, receive us this day as guests at your supper.

 

Departing Blessing

 

Broken Bread, Christ broken for us.

 

Let us hold on to you through the darkness of this night.

 

We make the sign of the cross of Christ

 

Our Christ our Saviour

 

In light, in dark,

 

In life, in death,

 

Our dear One,

 

Our Eternal Home.

 

Posted at 09:38am on 9th April 2020
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