Holy Week Reflection: The Gift of the Eucharist

We’ve finally made it. It’s the Triduum! These next three days are some of the most powerful, sacred days in our calendar. These are the days when our salvation was accomplished by Our Lord and Savior on the Cross! “But before his arms were outstretched between heaven and earth, to become the lasting sign of your covenant, [Jesus] desired to celebrate the Passover with his disciples” (Eucharistic Prayer for Reconciliation I). Before winning for us our salvation, Christ celebrated the Last Supper with his disciples.

Knowing full well what he was going to do the following day, Jesus sat down with the disciples to eat with them and, indeed, to feed them, for he truly is “the bread of life” and whoever comes to him “will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty” (Jn 6:35). Even those that ate of the bread from heaven, the Israelites in the desert, experience death; through the body and blood of Christ, however, we have the promise of eternal life (Jn 6:41-51).

This is the great gift of the Last Supper, which we celebrate today on Holy Thursday: the Eucharist. Jesus Christ, knowing what was to come, gave us a way in which we could have him with us forever, a way in which he could nourish us, heal us, and sanctify us. Before ascending to Heaven after his Resurrection, Jesus promises his apostles – and, indeed, each of us too – that he will be with us always, even to the end of the age (Mt 28:20). The Eucharist, instituted on this holy day, is Jesus’ way of keeping that promise to each of us.

So, tonight, when we celebrate our receiving this amazing gift of the Eucharist, let’s grow in our love for Christ, present in the Eucharist. Let’s remind ourselves of His great love for us, shown us on the Cross as well as in the Eucharist. And, after assuring that our souls are ready to receive him, let’s run to receive this incredible gift of love!