Thursday, April 1, 2010

A New Commandment I Give You

Today we celebrate a day in the Christian calendar that goes by many names: Holy Thursday, Great and Holy Thursday, Thursday of Mysteries, Covenant Thursday, and (as it is called in the Episcopal church) Maundy Thursday.

I've always understood that this was the day on which we remember the evening of the Last Supper as well as when Christ was betrayed by Judas Iscariot. What I didn't understand was the name. Some reading up yesterday indicated that there is a little controversy surrounding this meaning. This is one of the most commonly accepted meanings: "Maundy" is derived from the first part of the phrase Mandatum novum do vobis ut diligatis invicem sicu dilexi vos, being latin for, "A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another as I have loved you."

If you already knew this, then congrats. You had a leg up on me (isn't that a weird phrase?).

Earlier this week we participated in a Passover Seder to commemorate our Jewish roots as Christians. It was followed by a "Living Last Supper" during which some of the men in the church posed as the disciples in da Vinci's famous paining, The Last Supper. This painting is meant to capture the disciples' reaction to Jesus' statement that one of them would betray him. At church, the men held this pose except for when each of them had brief lines conveying each individual's worry that they might be the one to betray Christ. At the last minute, Leni was roped in to play the part of "James the Lesser". It was an appropriate role for him, considering the fact that the gentleman playing "James the Greater" probably has at least 100 pounds on Leni! Anyway, he did very well and everyone kept saying what a good speaking voice he has. I was proud.

Here's a picture, though blurry due to funky lighting, of the reenactment. Leni is second from the left.

Keep It Real!

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