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Some Thoughts for Holy Thursday

Today is Holy Thursday. At the Last Supper Jesus instituted both the Eucharist and the Priesthood. He instituted the Eucharist as He celebrated the Passover, taking that and transforming it into the Eucharist. The Passover was set by God (see the first reading for Mass tonight) to be celebrated with the sacrifice of a lamb where “The lamb must be a year-old male and without blemish.” On the Cross, Jesus becomes the Lamb of God. Just as the Jews celebrated the Passover as a “memorial feast” and “perpetual institution,” so do we celebrate the Eucharist. The Eucharist is not a human invention. It is what Paul says he “received from the Lord.” It is what Jesus commanded us to do when He says “Do this in remembrance of me.

If you would like to read more about the Eucharist, you can read my blog articles on the Eucharist at http://blog.renewaloffaith.org/blog/?cat=113. If you would like to watch an extended video, you could watch my two-hour presentation (you can watch in stages) on the Eucharist that was part of my series on the sacraments at www.renewaloffaith.org/sacramentseucharist .

In tonight’s gospel Jesus washed the feet of his disciples. In doing so, He provides a model of leadership. It is a not a leadership of power and honor. It is a leadership of service. In my recent blog article, “The Ministry of Priests”, I included a quote from Archbishop Hughes, “Chrysostom gave special attention to the motive appropriate for saying yes to a priestly vocation: the salvation and sanctification of others” (Priests in Love with God and Eager to Witness to the Gospel. San Francisco: Ignatius Press. 2021. 34). One does not become a priest for oneself. One does it for others. (Priesthood is covered in my last presentation in my series on the Sacraments as one of the two Sacraments of service)

Please pray for all priests today. Please pray for more people to come to know the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.

Peace,

Fr. Jeff

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