How Will You Remember Christ’s Passion?
Lucinda Secrest McDowell
It was all so new they didn’t understand.
This symbolic feast, which became a sacrament of the Church, was given in order that we remember. Remember Christ. And, in our remembering His sacrifice – His body broken and His blood shed – we continue to be His hands and feet and mouth and heart to a hurting world.
Maundy Thursday is the day which commemorates the Last Supper of Jesus Christ with the apostles. It is also the night in which Jesus was betrayed by Judas in the Garden of Gethsemane. The English word Maundy is derived from a Latin word meaning “mandate” because of our Lord’s mandate to the disciples in the upper room: “I give you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, so you also must love each other.” (John 13.34 CEB)
What do you remember most about Christ’s passion during Holy Week?
The following verses includes the words of constitution in the service of Eucharist, a name derived from the Greek word for “giving thanks,” which is exactly what our Lord did as He began the Last Supper. As we come to the table, may we also be filled with gratitude for what Christ has done for us. But, more than that, may we leave determined to also live eucharistic lives of gratitude.
“After giving thanks, [the Lord Jesus] broke bread and said, ‘This is my body, which is for you; do this to remember me.’ He did the same thing with the cup, after they had eaten, saying, This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Every time you drink it, do this to remember me.’” 1 Corinthians 11.24-25 CEB
This sacrament is also known as “Communion” (from the Latin meaning ‘union with’) because it does indeed celebrate our union with God made available through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. As such it is a meal of compassion, acceptance and forgiveness. And Jesus Himself is welcoming us to the fellowship of His table. How meaningful to know we share this experience with believers all over the world and throughout time, marking our union with all who share in the hope we have in Christ.
“We taste Thee, O Thou living bread; And long to feast upon Thee still; We drink of Thee, the fountainhead; And thirst our souls from Thee to fill.” (hymn “Jesus, Thou Joy of Loving Hearts,” Bernard of Clairvaux, 12th century)
What are some ways you can prepare to remember Christ through communion this week? Times of silence and listening; confession and repentance; a sacred concert; a Tennebrae (dimming of the lights) service; a vigil?
Robert Benson urges us to never forget the story of God with us. “We are called upon to remember that everything changed after that night. We are called upon to remember Him as we take the Body and Blood…We are called to remember that to do so in this mysterious sacramental act is a call for us to be broken and poured out as well.”
under the mercy, Cindy
©2017 Lucinda Secrest McDowell
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