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Last night Lent ended. This morning the 3 days prior to Easter, the Triduum began. Holy Thursday, the day to remember The Last Supper is here.
Holy Thursday: Final Spiritual Growth or Mad Rush for Easter Prep?
Are you finding yourself called inward for reflection and a final push to grow closer to Christ?
Or, is there are push to do last minute Easter preparations which have nothing to do with your heart?
I find myself torn between the 2.
I’ll have time set aside for spiritual reflection with the MOMS group at church working through a study on St. Thomas Aquinas. And, I am really looking forward to that time of learning and fellowship.
However, I also know that I have to make time for last minute preparations for Easter.
This is the first Easter where my husband has not been home with us. I find it a challenge to do it all on my own and find myself praying over the situation. In those prayers, I not only pour out my struggles to God, but also pray for friends who no longer have a spouse and must walk the path of solo parenting for the long haul.
Aside from the need to gather items for Easter baskets, I also have pants to hem for my youngest. He’s grown leaps and bounds in the past few years. Some has been around rather than just up, so new pants were purchased to fit him. But, they are a little too long for him (as finding husky dress pants seems to be a real challenge here in Alaska.)
Holy Thursday: Simple Things to Do for Your Spirit
Attend Holy Thursday Mass
Of course, attending a Holy Thursday service would be a great thing to do today. It has been a few years since I’ve gone to Holy Thursday Mass. However, there is something about the washing of the feet and a final time for adoration before Jesus is retired for Good Friday that pulls at my heart.
There really is nothing like gathering in community to remember The Last Supper and contemplate what is to come.
However, I know that not everyone can do that.
Celebrate a Seder Meal
Some families might want to reconnect to the Jewish roots of the Christian faith. There are many resources for doing a Seder meal. My friend Monica wrote up a Simple Seder meal a few years ago which is easy to implement.
I experienced a Seder meal this past Saturday with our ladies group at church. This is a biannual event for the group and I was so happy it fell this year as I won’t be there for future ones.
Why embrace something from our past?
In the script used for the ladies group, there are spots where everyone speaks. One of the sections says that we speak the stories to remember. For it is in remembering the past that we can grow into the future.
Read Today’s Scriptures as a Family
This is easy to do and a great way to have a ‘home church’ experience.
The readings for the Evening Mass of The Lord’s Supper are:
Reading 1 EX 12:1-8, 11-14
Responsorial Psalm PS 116:12-13, 15-16BC, 17-18
Reading 2 1 COR 11:23-26
Gospel JN 13:1-15
My recommendation is to have everyone sit in silence after the readings are concluded. Allow people time to ruminate, or ‘chew’, the words in their mind and spirit. Then consider time to talk about what you’ve read or maybe find a short devotional to share.
Then consider some music which fits with the day.
Pange Lingua is sung as the Blessed Sacrament is carried through the church in procession to the place of reposition. In our parish, it is the larger of the 2 chapels.
The version below is in Latin and gorgeous. After letting it wash over you, consider reading the English translation of the hymn.
Looking for more ideas? I found that Catholic Culture’s page for Holy Thursday has not only history for today, but ideas of recipes, etc. to make.
How are you marking Holy Thursday this year?
Is it a time to continue growing closer to God or are the secular trappings of Easter taking hold?