by Peyton G. Craighill
I have served many congregations in my life. But one thing is assured any of congregation. The service least attended is Maundy Service.
This a pity, because Christ gave five great gifts to us, the members of his Church, and we want to thank him for these gifts. The list is below:
- The most precious of these The Eucharist: (The Book of Common Prayer, on page 274, mentions this as “the Sacrament of Body and Blood”). Christ converted the Seder, which was an annual event, into weekly event.
- The Washing of Feet. The Washing of Feet must be understood in the context of the Jesus’ and his disciples’ lives. In that age, everybody wore sandals. Walking on dusty roads, their feet got dusty. And the lowest slave used to wash the feet of travelers before they entered the house. Jesus was acting a parable when he washed his disciple’s feet. He meant to illustrate power in his Kingdom as servant power, rather than power this world of status, prestige, and arms. Servant power is the power of divine love, that can change this world. Its perfect illustration is crucifixion and resurrection of Christ.
- The New Commandment: Love one another as I have loved you. That means total unselfishness
- Eternal Life. The Collect the Maundy Thursday reads, “who in these holy mysteries gives us a pledge of eternal life…”
- Quoting of Christ: “Peace is my last gift to you…”
These five gifts of Christ, through Maundy Service – The Eucharist, The Washing of Feet, Servant Power, Divine Love, Eternal Life, Christ’s Peace. May every gift from Christ to you be real this Maundy Service this year.