April 1, 2021
“Do you understand what I have done?
You call me your teacher and Lord, and you should, because that is who I am.
And if your Lord and teacher has washed your feet, you should do the same for each other.
I have set the example, and you should do for each other exactly what I have done for you.”
~ John 13;12-15
This evening, we enter into the Easter Triduum – Eve of Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday, and the Easter Vigil. On Holy Thursday, we commemorate the Last Supper, where Jesus establishes the sacrament of Holy Communion.
In today’s readings, we span many thousands of years, rediscovering the first Passover, the moment when the Lord told the people gathered that this day, “shall be a memorial feast for you,” and this became a great reason to gather, pray, and remember.
Jesus gathered his disciples for what he knew would his last meal with them. Their super was not a Seder, however; it was held on Thursday before Passover had begun and did not have the symbolic foods associated with a Seder. Instead, Jesus focused his attention on the break and wine, saying “This is my body” and “this is my blood.”
From that day forward, whenever the apostles gathered in Jesus’ name, the bread and wine would remind them of him. It became for us, his body and blood, our Eucharist. Today, our hearts brace for the recounting of the agony that Jesus endured on Good Friday.
Jesus had another purpose for gathering his closest friends the day before his death on the cross. He wanted to model and share with them the importance of serving and loving one another. He prepared to wash their feet like a servant. Peter wanted no part of this, but Jesus was adamant. Through this action, Jesus taught us an important lesson, as he, Jesus, the Lord, Our God, humbled himself to serve all of us. This gives us the way and the will to love and serve all people created by God. Jesus modeled and taught humility, love, and service in the final hours with his disciples.