At the start of this Holy Triduum, Sister Gina Scaringella, OP, offers us the following reflection for Holy Thursday:
What Could Be More Important?
My favorite part of Holy Thursday night is that I needn’t debate where to go or what to do. It’s always been a no-brainer: Go to church! Most years, at the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, I savor my unity with the faithful who fill the pews around me. We’ve all gathered to begin the sacred journey of Triduum. We’ve all decided that on this night, there is nothing more important.
Of course, this year is different. The journey will unfold from our sofas as we participate in liturgy by livestream. The senses will be less engaged without the incense, the washing of feet, the tasting of Eucharist. Yet we will be in communion, perhaps as never before.
The Triduum journey highlights the ugliest parts of our human condition: cruelty, greed, hatred, death. Sadly, these realities and others, equally painful, persist today, especially in Covid times. But as the pandemic lockdown causes us to form communion from living rooms, we trust that ugly realities—even the darkest ones—have never conquered Love. This is the Paschal Mystery, and we enter and celebrate (yes, “celebrate”!) the communion born of this mystery.
This week, I have known this truth most deeply after a sister saw me strolling outside our convent. It was Sunday evening, and I’d stepped outside for some air. I had my key, but the sister, worried that I’d been locked out, came to the door and called to me. It was a simple act, but all week her gesture has reminded me of this: The One who asks us tonight to watch with him in the garden is always watching—and loving—us.
There is nothing more important.