Deacon Joe Nguyen
Even thought we are at home during this Coronavirus crisis, even though we won’t be able to gather in our holy church with all our brothers and sisters and even though we are livestreamming instead, I know that you all will love this night – The night that I can sum up as SO CATHOLIC.
1) Eucharist is front and center this night. We bow our heads to give thanks for this sacred meal, a God-moment of the highest order, knowing that our Lord and God comes to us in a very concrete, visible, tangible way. And we bow our heads solemnly together in prayer with the Blessed Sacrament — a sign that we will follow the Lord wherever he goes.
And then we sit in silent prayer in the presence of Jesus, reflecting on his great love for us, a love poured out for us on Calvary — while at the same time reflecting on how we can best love him back.
2) And today is also the day our parish (and many other parishes also) formally receive our holy oils that had been blessed and consecrated by our Bishop.
The Oil of the Sick, the Oil of Catechumens, and the Sacred Chrism. (Oils used in the Sacramental life of the Church)
These oils are signs to us that our God is never far away, but rather, is with us always — signs that our God wants to heal us and transform us and forgive us every step of the way, from birth to death. These oils also show us how the created things of this world (even simple, ordinary things) can be channels of God’s grace.
3) Oh yeah — the foot washing. How could I forget that? What was I thinking?
Our Lord Jesus said that He did not come to be served but to serve. His command is to “wash the feet of one another”, what that really means is: care for one another, and embrace one another, and help one another, and reach out to those in need. In other words, love and serve one another.
And so, as we experience this beautiful, holy night (at home during this crisis), as we give thanks to God for all he does for us and within us every second in our lives, as we thank Jesus for his profound act of love for our sake, as we are moved by tonight’s specialness and uniqueness, let’s NOT forget the most important part of being a true disciple of Jesus.
Let’s LOVE one another. There’s nothing more Catholic than that.
Deacon Joe Nguyen