Body of Christ: Last Supper

The Last Supper. In the verses which follow v.17, Mark concentrates all of his attention upon two incidents which marked the meal: the moment of the dipping of the bread and the bitter herbs in the bowl of stewed fruit when Jesus spoke of his betrayal (verses 18–21), and the interpretation of the bread and the third cup of wine following the meal itself (verses 22–25). Continue reading

Body of Christ: Passover

One of the reasons to “study” Scripture is to realize the gospels are not newspaper reports, historic documentation (although it sometimes does just that), or even eye-witness accounts.  Most often the gospels are the writing down, under divine inspiration, the oral accounts of the early Christian community about Jesus the Christ. This is worth noting because, when asked about the Last Supper, most Christians will reply that it was the traditional Passover meal.  But when asked, “Well, where does it say that in Scripture” many are less clear. Continue reading

Body of Christ: context

The story of the “Last Supper” is an account quite familiar to Christians. The version in the Gospel according to Mark certainly recounts many of the familiar features. Too often, Catholic move quickly through the text seeing the institution of the Eucharist – and within the Tradition and Teaching of the church, while they are on solid ground, one wonders if the they adequately understand the deeper currents present in the gospel account. Continue reading

Body of Christ: history of celebration

Jesus’ Final Meal with His Disciples (Mark 14:12-25)

12 On the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, when they sacrificed the Passover lamb, his disciples said to him, “Where do you want us to go and prepare for you to eat the Passover?” 13 He sent two of his disciples and said to them, “Go into the city and a man will meet you, carrying a jar of water. Follow him. 14 Wherever he enters, say to the master of the house, ‘The Teacher says, “Where is my guest room where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?”’ 15 Then he will show you a large upper room furnished and ready. Make the preparations for us there.” 16 The disciples then went off, entered the city, and found it just as he had told them; and they prepared the Passover. Continue reading

Being the Promise

When you hear the “Great Commission” what is the prominent part that resonates with you?  “Go” – “make disciples” – “Baptizing” – “teaching” – the declaration of the Holy Trinity: “Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit?”

The Great Commission continues “teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold…” In my experiment of asking people to finish the sentence most replied “I will be with you until the end…”  But the ending is different:  I am with you always, until the end of the age.” Continue reading

A week in the life…

Most of the time, I use this space in the bulletin to write about one topic. Today’s column is a bit of a hodgepodge – a little of this and a little of that. Maybe this will end up being a stream of consciousness?

Fr. Michael headed North on Monday, driving to NYC to take up his studies. And as Fr. Zack said, “And then there were two.” People are asking, “Do you know who’s coming to replace Fr. Michael?” At this point in time, we do not know and there is no one definitely scheduled. But not to fret, we are working on it. Continue reading

Holy Trinity: mission

Great-CommissionAll power…all nations… all that I have commanded you…with you always. One should be struck by the repetition of the word “all” in this passage:

  1. Jesus has been given all power (v.18).
  2. Disciples are to be made of all nations (v.19).
  3. Disciples are to obey all that Jesus commanded (v.20).
  4. Jesus will be with the disciples always (literally “all the days”; v.20).

The universality of Jesus’ power and his continuing presence provide the dynamic for the universal discipleship mandate. The disciples will be able to make disciples of all the nations only as they recognize that Jesus has been given all authority and that he will be with them all the days until the end. The universal task is daunting, but it can be done because of the continuing power and presence of Jesus. Continue reading

Holy Trinity: doubt

Great-CommissionDoubt/hesitation. When they saw him, they worshiped, but they doubted. Many English translations offer “but some doubted.” Unfortunately the word “some” does not appear in the Greek text. The only two valid translations are “they worshiped, but they doubted (hesitated)” or “they worshiped and they doubted (hesitated).” It is hard to avoid the simple statement of the text: those who worship are also those who doubt.

Mark Allan Powell writes about this verse in his book, Loving Jesus [121]. Continue reading

Holy Trinity: the eleven

Great-Commission16 The eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had ordered them. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped, but they doubted. 18 Then Jesus approached and said to them, “All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.” (Mt 28:16-20) Continue reading

Holy Trinity – more context

Great-Commission16 The eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had ordered them. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped, but they doubted. 18 Then Jesus approached and said to them, “All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.” (Mt 28:16-20) Continue reading