Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. - John 14:27
Today is Maundy Thursday. This evening we will gather at church (and online) for worship. Our Book of Common Prayer contains services for only a few specific days; this is one of them. I believe this highlights the significance of the day itself. The quote below comes from Lent Holy Week Easter and the Great Fifty Days by Leonel L. Mitchell. I hope it may enrich our understanding of this important day. “The name Maundy Thursday is derived from the Latin mandatum, and refers to the new commandment (novum mandatum) in John 13:34, appointed in the Prayer Book to be sung as an antiphon during the footwashing, which came to be called “the Mandy” in medieval England. The Proper Liturgy celebrates the events of the Last Supper, the footwashing and the institution of the eucharist. It is the only eucharist celebrated between Wednesday and the Great Vigil and ties the events of the Last Supper to those of Good Friday. It is appropriately celebrated as a Holy Week liturgy connecting the institution of the eucharist with the sacrifice of the cross.” Our Maundy Thursday liturgy can be very moving. The service includes foot washing, a practice that leaves many of us feeling uncomfortable and vulnerable, but this is by design. Jesus washed his disciples' feet not to humiliate himself but to illustrate the extent of his love for them. I hope this context helps you engage with the worship offered at Ascension this evening.