ET1 HT – 29 Mar 2018
Called in service and eucharistic love (Holy Thursday)
Message by: Fr Richard M Healey
MP3 (Mass of the Lord's Supper)
One of the great privileges of having a month in Jerusalem last year was visiting many of the places that are associated with the final days in the life of Jesus. Stepping on the same ground that Jesus had walked over, prayed in, wept in, offered his laments and called his disbelieving disciples deeper into life and joy – helped to bring the gospel scenes to life and remind me that the stories of Jesus are no mere stories that can only be contained in the pages of history. This was a flesh and blood man who lived and died in this land, and taught his disciples then and now to follow him along the same journey of moving from death to life.
One of the ways that he did that was by demonstrating how we are called to live. In the Gospel today from John 13, he demonstrates the way of service. He lays aside his clothes as they begin this pre-Passover meal, just as on the next day he will lay aside his very life. He bends down at their feet with the basin of water and the towel to embrace their feet as a sign of the service that he wants each of us to offer.
As a church we have embraced his call to remember him in the bread that is changed to be his body and the wine that is changed to be his blood. How much more wonderful if we had also remembered him in his act of service? How would our church be different if we had embraced the call to simply be brothers and sisters together in this new kingdom of love – serving and loving each other in a radical equality of discipleship?