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Holy Thursday - Maundy Thursday

Alex Levin

"Maundy Thursday also called Holy Thursday, is a remembrance of the Last Supper of Jesus Christ. just before His arrest, passion and death.

The word ‘Maundy’ originates from the the Latin ‘Dias Mandatum’. It means “the day of the new commandment,” which Christ gave to Christians that we should love one another, just as He has loved us (John 13:34-35).

Orthodox and Catholic churches have special reverence for Holy Thursday. Just as Christ humbly washed the feet of His disciples, the priest re-enacts this action by washing the feet of people in the congregation during services held on this day.

In fact, after the Eucharistic celebration, the worship continues into the night also. People remain in Church keeping a prayerful ‘vigil’ remembering the command of Christ to keep watch and pray with Him just before His betrayal and arrest."

I thought today we would have a look at the Garden of Gethsemane, but found that it is all accompanied by narrative and various types. Have a look, (below the reading) don't worry about the narrative too much. How does it seem? Can you imagine Jesus there? Or is it too tidy and manicured? When I made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land in 1981, the Garden of Gethsemane didn't do much for me. I was impressed by the size and age of the Olive trees there, but for me I couldn't imagine that night when Jesus was there, seeking solitude in his time of agony.

Luke 22 Good News Translation

39Jesus left the city and went, as he usually did, to the Mount of Olives; and the disciples went with him.40When he arrived at the place, he said to them, "Pray that you will not fall into temptation."41Then he went off from them about the distance of a stone's throw and knelt down and prayed.42"Father," he said, "if you will, take this cup of suffering away from me. Not my will, however, but your will be done."43An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him.44In great anguish he prayed even more fervently; his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground. 45Rising from his prayer, he went back to the disciples and found them asleep, worn out by their grief.46He said to them, "Why are you sleeping? Get up and pray that you will not fall into temptation."47Jesus was still speaking when a crowd arrived, led by Judas, one of the twelve disciples. He came up to Jesus to kiss him.48But Jesus said, "Judas, is it with a kiss that you betray the Son of Man?"49When the disciples who were with Jesus saw what was going to happen, they asked, "Shall we use our swords, Lord?"50And one of them struck the High Priest's slave and cut off his right ear.51But Jesus said, "Enough of this!" He touched the man's ear and healed him.52Then Jesus said to the chief priests and the officers of the Temple guard and the elders who had come there to get him, "Did you have to come with swords and clubs, as though I were an outlaw?53I was with you in the Temple every day, and you did not try to arrest me. But this is your hour to act, when the power of darkness rules." 54They arrested Jesus and took him away into the house of the High Priest; and Peter followed at a distance.

Be still and let this piece of music from the Taize Community in France, flow through you Repeat the music if it helps you draw closer in prayer to Christ.

Let us pray,

When the disciples had sung a hymn they went out on to the Mount of Olives.

Jesus prayed to the Father,

"If it is possible, take this cup of suffering from me."

He said to his disciples, "How it that you were not able to keep watch with me one hour?"

The hour has come for the Son Of Man to be handed over to the power of sinful men. Come let us go.!

Christ was obedient unto death. Go in His peace.

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