March 28, 2024
Holy Thursday
Two Special Moments
Do this in remembrance of me.
1 Corinthians 11:24

An “embarrassment of riches,” as the French like to say, applies to what is given us, for our contemplation and for our immense gratitude, on this Holy Thursday. The farewell meal that our Lord shares with the intimate company of his twelve Apostles offers two moments that encapsulate in dramatic form the heart of the Gospel teaching.

The first are the Words of Institution: This is my body given up for you; this is my blood, poured out for you. As these give meaning to the dark events about to follow, they also bring us to the central core of our Lord’s identity. If you wish to know who I am, Jesus is saying, never stop contemplating these words.

The second is that extraordinary gesture at the end of the meal when the Master bends low to wash the feet of his disciples. This is the most eloquent expression of the humility that marks the life, not only of those entrusted with authority in the Church, but of every disciple called to imitate Jesus’ example. What wondrous love is this.

- Fr. Dennis Gallagher, A.A.

Exodus 12:1-8, 11-14 • Psalm 116:12-13, 15-18 • 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 • John 13:1-15

Comments

March 28, 2024 at 08:22 PM

LIVING FAITH STAFF. As you are tweaking the site for your 40 Anniversary, could you please consider listing the oldest comments first under the reflection? I live on the west coast and don't read the comments until hours after they have been posted. Many of the comments refer to something that was posted much earlier so it's hard to figure out what prayers they are asking for, etc. until further down the page. I've tried reading from bottom up but then the response comments come up before the original comment. Thank you for considering this idea.

Living Faith Team
April 2, 2024 at 04:19 PM

Thanks for the comment about comments. You are the first person to ask, but it is worthy of a review/discussion with our team. Thanks for the recommendation and feedback.

March 28, 2024 at 01:06 PM

Dear Father Gallagher, Thank you so much for such wonderful reflection on this Holy Thursday. It is a teaching moment. The following touched my heart: "The farewell meal that our Lord shares with the intimate company of his twelve Apostles offers two moments that encapsulate in dramatic form the heart of the Gospel teaching. " I have read your piece 3 times and I am going to share it with others. And, I just read the following: "The Lord's gift of himself on the cross, made present in the Eucharist, is the foundation for every act of charity, symbolized in the washing of the feet." God bless you and protect you. Neri

March 28, 2024 at 11:24 AM

Indeed Fr. Dennis, first before second!!! Salvation before service... *** Remembering my Salvation is based on Jesus' death on the cross and none of my work or service in 1 Corinthians 11:24-25, "When He had given thanks, He broke it. He said, “This is My body. It is given for you. Every time you eat it, do it in memory of Me.” In the same way, after supper He took the cup. He said, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. Every time you drink it, do it in memory of Me.” *** You cannot lose your Salvation (bath - once clean always clean), but you do have to confess and repent of your sins (wash our feet - life long process of sanctification) on this side of heaven as Jesus explained to Peter inJohn 13:6-11, "He (Jesus) came to Simon Peter (trying to wash his feet). “Lord,” Peter said to Him, “are you going to wash my feet?” Jesus replied, “You don’t realize now what I am doing. But later you will understand.” “No,” said Peter. “You will never wash my feet.” Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you (your feet), you can’t share life with Me.” “Lord,” Simon Peter replied, “not just my feet! Wash my hands and my head too!” (Peter was always dramatic :-) Jesus answered, “People who have had a bath (Salvation) need to wash only their feet (confession and repentance). The rest of their body is clean. And you are clean. But not all of you are. (Judas was not clean without Salvation)” Jesus knew who was going to hand Him over to His enemies. That was why He said not every one was clean!" *** As I learn from Jesus, everything He did was to fulfill God's plan of long ago in obedience to the Father! Listen in Luke 4:16-21, "Jesus went to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. On the Sabbath day He went into the synagogue as He usually did. He stood up to read. And the scroll of Isaiah the prophet was handed to Him. Jesus unrolled it and found the right place. There it is written, “The Spirit of the Lord is on Me. He has anointed Me to announce the Good News to poor people. He has sent Me to announce freedom for prisoners. He has sent Me so that the blind will see again. He wants Me to set free those who are treated badly. And He has sent Me to announce the year when He will set His people free.” (Isaiah 61:1,2) Then Jesus rolled up the scroll. He gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were staring at Him. He began by saying to them, “Today this passage of Scripture is coming true (being fulfilled in Me) as you listen.” ******* Jesus overwhelmes me with His Salvation plan of long ago, His sacrifice on the cross and His selflessness in His obedience!!! Nothing was done to Jesus, He was always in control and He willingly laid down His life for me in John 10:17-18, "The reason My Father loves Me is that I give up My life. But I will take it back again. No one takes it from Me. I give it up Myself. I have the authority to give it up. And I have the authority to take it back again. I received this command from My Father.” *** It is always my first importance to pray fo someone's Salvation before serving them! Sometimes, I even pray for difficulties in their lives to come and persist so they would turn to God!!! *** Mark 8:36-38, "What good is it if someone gains the whole world but loses their soul? Or what can anyone trade for their soul? Suppose anyone is ashamed of Me (Jesus) and My Words among these adulterous and sinful people. Then the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when He comes in His Father’s glory with the holy angels.” *** I share with my BSF students on HOW to study Scripture, "What does this passage of Scrioture reveal about God - His Person, His Purposes, and or His Work?" Here is WHY, "WHAT we believe about God determines what we believe about ourselves, our world, our purposes, our lives and HOW we behave!" ******* Basic Truth of the Christian Faith * Know WHAT you believe * Know WHY you believe * Know HOW to tell others WHAT you beleive and WHY you believe ✝️

March 28, 2024 at 10:10 AM

Thank you, Father Dennis for the beautiful reflection this morning. The events of Holy Thursday are so beautiful, even with the tragedy that ensues. Jesus gives Himself to all of us, and we are so grateful. I pray that I will imitate His humility and live a life of service to my brothers and sisters. Praying for strength and healing for all the people of Baltimore and the families of the victims.

March 28, 2024 at 09:42 AM

My wife and I are going to watch Season Four of the series The Chosen which is being shown in many theaters today, tomorrow and Friday. If you haven’t seen The Chosen, it is the best video presentation of the life of Christ I have ever seen, from His birth to His Ascension. It is available streamed by downloading the free app The Chosen. Because it is such a long series, it is able to develop the characters of all those who played a significant part in Christ’s life on earth, including each of the apostles, many of His disciples including Mary, Martha, Mary Magdalene, and others. Through the first three seasons we have watched 18 hours of superb, beautiful filming. We will watch about seven and a half hours more during the Tridium. If you have watched it, check their website or your local listing to see if it is playing in a theater near you during Holy Week. I thank God for all the faithful men and women who have devoted their talent over the last four years to telling the story of His life.

Jjane
March 29, 2024 at 11:28 AM

Joe…a million likes. Thank you for letting me know. I agree with you about it being the best character build and depiction. Amen.

I brown
March 28, 2024 at 10:47 AM

I have enjoyed watching The Chosen as well during Lent.

March 28, 2024 at 09:18 AM

Thank you Fr. Dennis, those words will keep me warm today in my thoughts that Jesus us with us/me today. Prayers for those affected by the fallen bridge in Baltimore, all our current priests and for more to join, and all those going through personal struggles. Blessings LFF, may this Holy Week be the best ever and may the love of God shine throughout all the world each and everyday!

jane
March 29, 2024 at 11:25 AM

Oh Stormy, peace to you and Journey. All things are possible with God. Amen.

Bill L.
March 28, 2024 at 03:37 PM

Stormy, never let it be said that there are too many prayers. We all have enough to go around a hundred-fold. You have people on this site you may never meet. But know that they as we are praying for you and Journey. Bill L

Salina
March 28, 2024 at 11:33 AM

Stormy, NOTHING is too small or too big for God :-) Praying for you and Journey in Philippians 4:6-7, "Don’t worry about anything. No matter what happens, tell God about EVERYTHING. Ask and pray, and give thanks to Him. Then God’s peace will watch over your hearts and your minds. He will do this because you belong to Christ Jesus. God’s peace can never be completely understood!"

peggyR
March 28, 2024 at 10:16 AM

Dear Stormy, sending prayers for Journey and hope for good news as she continues with testing. Praying for you and your Husband as well. It’s got to be so difficult to see her in distress. Loving hugs to all of you.

Kjc
March 28, 2024 at 09:38 AM

Stormy I am so sorry about your friend and companion, Journey is special and I hope you will receive inspiration from the time you have. I will pray that the lord gives you strength. Ken

Stormy
March 28, 2024 at 09:25 AM

I wasn't going to ask for more prayers because it seems so small compared to all the terrible in this world but as I continued my day reading more prayers I was told to turn to LFF for help. Most everyone know the path I have been on with Journey. We did bloodwork and she may have either kidney issues or Addison's disease. Please pray for us that what God has given us to deal with is something we can deal with for a long time. She just came into my life and our love has blossomed immeasurably in this short time. It's as if she has always been here. To lose her now would break our hearts. Thank you!

March 28, 2024 at 09:14 AM

Good morning LFF, we have made it to the blessed and Holy Triduum. My wife and I love the Mass of the Lord’s Supper. Such a beautiful mass, with fantastic readings that put in place the absolute fact that Jesus would become the ultimate unblemished lamb, sacrificed for our sakes. And the washing of the feet, an annual tradition that also takes place at the time of ordination of our new priests. It’s all perfect, absorb it all as we enter this great celebration.

March 28, 2024 at 09:04 AM

Glad to see you have added Baltimore to our daily prayer Jane. This was my home for over 40 years with the bridge visible through some of the hospital windows. Please keep in mind the fallout this will bring to not just those living there but to the whole east coast as we all depend on so much shipped into the port and driven up and down to us. Pray for patience and understanding when items are delayed or unavailable, pray those depending on the port for work will be able to feed their families, pray the many many extra hours commuters will have to spend getting to and from their destinations will be time used in communication with Our Lord and not in angry, unbrotherly thoughts! May God our Father send The Spirit to help us all use this experience toward a good, as St. Paul tells us we should. Praying you all feel Him this Triduum both in His forgiveness and His glory. Amen

Kjc
March 28, 2024 at 09:34 AM

Vicky yes thank you for reminding us of all the people who will be affected by this tragedy. You have to be close to really feel the pain. I mean in shootings, violence, wars, famines floods etc. I will spend some time today praying and thinking of those people. Ken

jane
March 28, 2024 at 09:10 AM

Amen Vicky. So much tragedy here.

March 28, 2024 at 07:56 AM

Amen.

March 28, 2024 at 07:10 AM

Thank you Fr. Dennis for a beautiful devotional as we enter into the mystery of the Triduum. May we be able to offer up some part of ourselves to others and follow the role modeling of servant leadership that Jesus offered us today. Wasn't able to get into the site yesterday morning and I see that they had some issues. Wishing everyone a holy finish to our lent as we walk with our Lord. Blessings to all those who are traveling. Amen.

March 28, 2024 at 07:05 AM

Lord please hear our prayers and bring your light to all those suffering in Baltimore with the Bridge collapse, Haiti, the Middle East, Ukraine, Russia, the Sudan, and all those suffering around the world - also for their strength, courage and resilience to continue walking in faith. Send them your light. Father in Heaven, have mercy on us and on the whole world! You sent Your Son, the Prince of Peace, for the salvation of the world. We pray that the Peace of Christ will reign in Haiti, the Middle East, Ukraine, Russia and Sudan. Please protect and send aid to those in need and all who are at-risk. We pray for peace and rebuilding– we who are working towards it and for all those who are suffering or in danger from conflicts. We pray for an end to violence and war – we pray for wisdom for all leaders who have a hand in this. Lord God please help those in most need of thy mercy. Amen.

March 28, 2024 at 06:59 AM

Amen. . Thank you Fr. Dennis... have a holy and reflective Holy Thursday LFF

March 28, 2024 at 06:42 AM

1 John3:1-" Behold what manner of love the Father has given unto us, that we may be called the children of God." Belonging to God, we are called to embrace that love, given up and poured out for us, and to imitate Jesus's example of humility and sevice to one another. Oh! What Two Special Moments. Doing these in remembrance of Jesus. On this Holy Thursday, as we journey through this Easter Triduum, may we cooperate with God's graces, commemorating his life, his love, his passion and death, culminating in his ultimate victory, over death, conquering both the cross and the grave. Blessings and love Living Faith Family. Peace!

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