Maundy Thursday: Returned to Rest

Smooth approach, gentle nod
Her voice precedes our form
Like water waking canvas, 
She re-stories faces worn. 

                          So long

these crosses take to draw
and rid us of our norms. They sink 
into the skin but will they 
fill us as they’ve sworn? 

                          It’s Ash

Wednesday. We stand shouldered
in circles, mourning dark 
against our backs. A woman 
holds her candle--as it warms 

                          and burns

she walks this rounded space 
of lack and leaning--forward, light 
unbridled to display a grace-
full body. We are torn

                          to be 

                          returned, to rest
By Taylor O. Thomas

Questions & Actions

  • Maundy Thursday commemorates the Last Supper. The origins of the word maundy are debated, but one theory is that it comes from the Latin translation of John 13:34, a new commandment I give to you, to love one another as I have loved you. On this Maundy Thursday take a moment to read the whole of John 13 which in John’s recounting of the Passover meal shared by Jesus and his disciples (you can keep reading for his whole account, it streaches into chapter 17). After reading, reflect on the following: Does this commandment extend beyond humanity to all creation? If so, how do we love creation as Christ loves it?
  • Matthew, Mark, and Luke have the most well known recounting of the Maundy Thursday Last Supper story. Importantly, they include the words of institution, this bread is my body, borken; this wine is the blood of a new covenant. Pick your favorite Gospel and read its account (Mt. 26:17-30, Mk. 14:12-26, Lk. 22:7-39). Focus, in particular, on the bread and the wine. These elements were not only staples of the table, the daily diet of the time, but have particular significance in the celebration of the Passover. Take a moment to consider the daily sanctity, the mundane holiness, of your daily table. What foods fill it? Who surrounds it? Take a moment during a meal today to be mindful of Christ’s presence in the midst of the meal. What does it look like to eat and drink in remembrance of Christ? What are some of the important components of such a meal for you? (Think about the food, it’s source, the people, the conversation, the whole tenor of the meal).
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