Holy Thursday 2023


Image credit: Ilya Repin, The Last Supper, 1903 

This bit of doggerel on the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist apparently comes from the unlikely source of Elizabeth I?  My mom sent it to me attributed to John Donne, but when I went googling, it's in the Anglican book of prayer as Elizabeth's. 

Twas Christ, The Word, that spake it.
He took the bread and brake it.
And what The Word did make it,
That I believe and take it!

A beautiful homily for today from the patriarch of Jerusalem. 

The night of the Supper was also the night of Judas, who came out of the Upper Room to go and sell Jesus. The night of Christ’s memory entrusted to His apostles was also the night of Peter’s denial. The night of the Eucharist was also the night of the flight of the apostles, who abandoned the Master. The night of the new commandment was also the night of the sad sleep of the friends.

Yet we, here and now, do not want to dwell on the dark side of that night and of every night, personal, political, social and even ecclesial. That side we know well, all too well, to the point of perhaps having grown used to it. Our life, with its passages and crises, our Holy Land, with its violence and injustices, the Church herself, with her labors and contradictions, familiarize us every day with the heavy atmosphere of that night, during which the Lord was betrayed.

I would instead like to contemplate, with you and for you, always amazed and grateful, the way Christ went through that night, the way He responded to the disintegration and disbandment of His own, His reaction to fear and discouragement.