This bread – My Body

        This bread – My Body

Bread – an everyday commodity

Nourishment, pleasure

‘saviour’ to the hungry

Food for the soul.

 

Read more: This bread – My Body

Wednesday of Holy Week

Wednesday of Holy Week
(Isaiah 50: 4-9; Matthew 26: 14-25)

‘I will praise God's name with a song; I will glorify him with thanksgiving'

 

Still at the meal we see Jesus blessing the bread and the wine. You join the others in praising God for all his wonders. You glorify him for the love and life he shares so freely with others. And today, anointed and forgiven (and even though a day ahead of celebrating the Lord's last supper) you are being prepared for the feast of friends. This is the meal that our Jewish brothers and sisters share each year to commemorate what God has done in their lives. Intuitively you know it is the night of 're­membering', of putting together the body of Christ, the church, the community who gather around the word and the shared meal. It is a bittersweet night of intimacy, gifts given and love expressed.

Jesus knows this is his final night, you know but none of the others are aware of the impending fate awaiting Jesus in a few hours’ time. Jesus looks at those gathered around him, making special contact with you because he knows that you know. He keeps you in his gaze as he lifts up the bread and says: 'This is my body which is for you'. Hear the unspoken words - my body I give that you may have life, my body, manna at the service of your needs'. And taking the cup he said: 'This is the cup of the new covenant in my blood, do this as a memorial of me'. Be the bread of nourishment, the cup of outpouring love, be ready to give yourself completely for the life of another. It is a new covenant filled with mercy, forgiveness, healing and love - calling each of us to be co-redeemers as we extend the precious gifts of mercy, forgiveness and love.

Breath Prayer:

I breathe in:     'Jesus, you gave your all to me'

I breathe out:   'I offer you myself as a channel of your grace'

 

Holy Thursday

Thursday of Holy Week
(Isaiah 50: 4-9 Matthew 26: 14-25)

`He learnt to obey through suffering and became for all
who obey him the source of eternal salvation'

The night is cool, and Jesus invites his disciples and you to spend some time with him in the garden where they so often met to discuss and learn. You feel Jesus' mood. You move closer to him to offer him your support. Deeply troubled, Jesus asks his disciples to pray with him. However, they are tired and fall asleep. You, however, sit close by and listen to his anguished cry. You know what awaits him. Jesus rises from his kneeling position to see if the disciples are with him in his suffering. He finds them asleep. Utter desolation. For once he needed consolation and no one was there for him. In what ways would you like to extend comfort to this gentle man in the hour of his need?

You hear a noise at the gate. You see Judas. What is happening within you? How do you feel as Jesus is taken from you? You witness Peter getting up and in his usual bravado he cuts off the ear of one of the officials. And Jesus? True to his nature, even in the darkness of pain and death is the bridge builder, 'Those who fight with the sword will die by the sword'. He replaces the ear. How is this man affected? Do you see a change in him? You see the disciples scattering. Feel their fear. Follow Peter and listen to him as he stands at the fire. Become Peter. Feel his confusion, his sense of failure, his fear. The woman come up to you, one after the other. Every time you deny that you know Jesus and then ……the cock crows. Jesus walks by and you meet his loving and non­judgmental gaze. As then so now in your life.

Breath Prayer:

I breathe in:     'Jesus, Son of Man and Son of God'

I breathe out:   'Forgive the times I have denied knowing you'

 

Good Friday

GOOD FRIDAY

(Isaiah 52: 13-53; Hebrews 4: 14-16, 5: 7-9; John 18: 1 to 19: 42)
'Father, into.your hands I commend my spirit'

We call this Friday 'Good' because it is good for us to recognize that not all of our connections are pure, as much as we desire them to be. Somehow you manage to enter the court and you watch the proceedings. You see the spiritual power of Jesus, calm and humble - strengthened through his experience in the Garden, strengthened by his "yes" - 'your will be done'. You hear how Pilate interrogates him, you see his frustration, fear and anxiety to please the authorities. You follow the group designated to chastise Jesus. As they lash him with a whip, and crown him with thorns, you hear again - this is my body, my blood poured out for you - do this in memory of me. Having met Jesus over these days in such an intimate way - can you understand Jesus?

You now walk with him the road to Mt Golgotha. You see him, Son of God, weak and weary. He meets the women. You help him hold the cross as he comforts them. You notice he is always there for others. So why this cruel death? Too much for you, you take Veronica's place and wipe the bleeding, soiled face of Jesus. What is your response when you see the imprint of his face on that cloth. When Jesus meets his mother - witness what transpires as they look at each other. Enter their reality. Be Simon of Cyrene and help Jesus carry his cross. As you watch the crucifixion hear Jesus exclaiming: 'Father, forgive them for they do not know what they are doing'; today you will be with me in paradise; into your hands I commend my spirit'. Hear again the words of the last supper - 'Do this in memory of me'.

Breath Prayer:

I breathe in:      'Jesus, Son of God'

I breathe out:   'Thank you for your tremendous love'

 

Easter joy Saturday

EASTER JOY SATURDAY

GOD WHO ARE YOU?

                Thus fear lashes with venom at the heart of Life

My little mind cannot fathom            and God, Source of glory and

the awesome of you,                           power becomes again fragile

Fullness, Source, Alpha,                    like the babe in a manger

Omega, Creator and lover of             deeply desiring fullness for all

all.                                                          yet helpless in our refusal toreceive.

Your heart, a wide open door,

draws You into a journey that           Vulnerable you are

asks you to leave behind                    in your yearning

the splendour of your Godly             for deep communion, knowing

glory to take on the flesh                       full well the rejection

of human existence.                            by a people blinded by fear.

As is your nature                                 Deeply you long to open our

so your life.                                          hearts to the splendour of life,

You squander recklessly                    yet powerless as we choose

peace and joy                                       to embrace the small and the

healing, wholeness - LIFE!                safe.The identity of the recipient

mattered none.                                      Yet your door remains open

Desire alone the price.                       even as the laughter, song anddance of your life

Yet such generosity,                            ends on the cross.

such unconditional giving                  But crucified it cannot remain

such demand for justice and             for life spent becomes life born

equality                                                  renewed, free-spirited

unsettles, strikes fear                          outpouring

into hearts long stuck                          ever reaching out to embrace

in the hardened molds of                   all with fullness of life

control and self-righteousness.         as was and always will be.

Easter joy

EASTER JOY -SUNDAY

EARLY IN THE MORNING

 

              be',
a fiat that echoed its message
Early in the morning                                 across the ages
long before the first chirping of               spanning and uniting all of time. bird Mary ponders
as she walks in the stillness of the            Mary's pain-filled longing
garden on the burning ache within           pierced the air,
her heart.                                                  its waves spreading like a mantle
What meaning has the death                     gathering all of life,
of my beloved Son?                                 all who deeply thirst
Why this terrible end to your life?            for union with the Beloved One.
Oh, my son, in the hour of your               Jesus, long touched by the power
greatest need,                                           of this love
I had to let you be                                    enters the garden.
though my heart and soul                         Eyes meet and the radiance of
yearned to draw you to myself,                love betwixt mother and son
There, in my bosom                                 vibrates
to ease your aching body                         stretching into cosmic time
to smooth away your sorrow                    embracing all that is
to enwrap you gently with my                  calling and awakening
deepest love.                                            NEW LIFE.
Oh, my son, I do not understand,             As the SON rises in glorious
cannot comprehend                                  majesty
that the forces of fear are                         the sky lights up, beaming back
empowered                                              in awe and wonder
to destroy a life so young.                        the brilliant, fiery colours
Was this the mission for which                of Christ transformed. ‑
you were born?                                        Birds break forth into song
To die like a criminal in the prime            trees and grasses sway to the
of your life?
It makes no sense.                                    music of that eternal and
But I hear you say: 'Let it be, let it            intimate gaze.
 

 

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