Holy Week 2021: Maundy Thursday

7.50am Blimey, I think I’m going to regret being up so late last night! It was a struggle to wake up. But thankfully, Nathan has just walked in with tea, so all is well.

10.10am At Morning Prayer today we had a reading from the Old Testament, about what the priests had to do before they went into the temple. We also had a Psalm that has resonated so much for me over the last year, Psalm 42. It says:

My heart is breaking as I remember how it used to be: I walked among the crowd of worshippers, leading a great procession to the house of God, singing for joy and giving thanks amid the sound of a great celebration.

This is exactly how I feel when I think of life before Covid, especially in church and especially at Easter. Don’t you just love how words written 3000ish years ago can speak so powerfully to us today?

Anyway, I’m off to write a card to each baptism family to go in the bags, and to sort out printing for the shared supper this evening.

12.19pm I’ve just watched the fourth of our Holy Week reflections. Today we were thinking about Mary, Jesus’ Mother. What a woman.

2.30 Right, the 13 gift bags are done, the three readings are printed for tonight and I’m ready for an afternoon of delivering! Off we go!

5.30 I’ve just got back and I’ve had a lovely time. People, parents and kids alike, were so grateful for their gift bags. I feel like I’ve made loads of new friends this afternoon, from a little ‘un who introduced himself as ‘aptain ‘merca (Captain America) to the son and daughter-in-law of a member of my congregation. I’m so pleased we did this, and I’m grateful to the Deanery Mission and Pastoral Committee for sending us the money and encouraging us to do something different this week!

We’ve got the shared supper or zoom at half 7 so I’m going to make a start on tea. We’re having chicken and cauliflower thai curry with rice.

7.20pm my candle is ready, I’ve got my bowl of ice cream for supper and I’m good to go! The idea is that everybody brings along their supper and we eat it together over Zoom before having some reflections, prayers and music.

8.45pm I really enjoyed that! It was nice to share with people. There are so many of those faces that I have seen more on screen than in person and yet, I feel a bond. I know technology can be a pain but we are so blessed to have it. It was good to be on Zoom together as a community tonight.

10.45pm For me, Maundy Thursday is a day in Holy Week which is bitter sweet. Firstly, we’ve got Jesus having a meal with his friends. They chat, share food and Jesus talks to them. It’s a nice picture, a pleasant picture. That is, until the end. Jesus talks about himself being broken and poured out. I can see the disciples tired and confused, uncomprehending. Then Judas starts acting all weird.

They go out of the city to a garden and Jesus asks the disciples to stay awake but they just can’t (I know the feeling!). Jesus weeps and he prays. He asks God to make it stop. In the end, the soldiers come and arrest him and the disciples flee into the night. Peter, who, merely hours ago, was so faithful and determined, denies knowing Jesus at all. The rooster crows. Jesus is alone in a dark cell. Thursday is over.