Last year on Holy Thursday I was in Rome, and spent some time that morning wandering around Trastevere, the old town across the Tiber River. I visited the church of Santa Maria, pondering its beauty and the wonderful mosaics and icons within it. While I prayed, people began to prepare the altar for the evening Holy Thursday liturgy.
In place was the gigantic 800 year old Easter candle holder. The altar was adorned with a white cloth, and a simple olive tree was brought in. All was ready for the meal Jesus offered 2000 years ago to be made present, as it is every time it’s celebrated in his memory.
Vatican Council II called Eucharist “the source and summit of the Christian life.” In it, we know ourselves as Body of Christ, people called to share “the joys and hopes, the grief and anguish of the people of our time, especially of those who are poor or afflicted.” This evening, as we share the Lord’s Supper, let’s remember our communion in the One who makes us all one.