G E T T I N G T H E M O S T O U T O F T H E E U C H A R I S T
If you want to get the most out of the Eucharist you have to check your “I” at the door.The “I” that wants things, that endlessly critiques the way things are done, and that demands things be done in exactly a certain way (meaning “my way,” not God’s way). I think it was Peter Kreeft who once said that the famous song, “I Did It My Way,” sung by such great artists as Frank Sinatra and Elvis, is the national anthem of hell. The way of the world may be to do things “our way” but the way of Christ is to do things his Way.We therefore consciously have to leave “my way” at the door and in exchange take up an attitude that asks “how may we be of service to you, Lord, in this celebration of the Eucharist?”
THE INSTITU TION OF THE EUCHARIST BY JESUS On Holy Thursday, the day on which the Church celebrates the institution of the Holy Eucharist,the gospel reading for the Mass does not mention Jesus taking bread and wine but rather an act of service that Jesus performed at the Last Supper.The Lord taking bread and wine and declaring it his body and blood is mentioned in the Second Reading for that Mass,but not in the gospel.
The gospel for Holy Thursday is from John’s gospel. It is the story of Jesus rising from the table and shocking his disciples by doing something totally unexpected, washing their feet.
Peter refuses to have his feet washed at first but acquiesces when Jesus tells him that it is necessary if Peter is to have any inheritance in him.
If you are like me, you can relate to Peter.There is something in Peter’s character that perfectly illustrates what we all are like in our fallen nature.We are proud.We want to be in control.We like Jesus, and we want to be part of his crowd, but we also want to tell him what to do.