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Maundy Thursday: The Family Meal – Shawna R. B. Atteberry
Apr 052007

The Passover Seder was not a community religious event. It was a family meal. The family along with friends remembered and celebrated God redeeming them out of slavery in Egypt. As Sally points out in most traditional paintings and pictures of The Last Supper, we see Jesus with the 12 disciples. But we know that Mary, Mary Magdalene, and other women followed Jesus from Galilee to Jerusalem, and they were at the foot of the cross the next day. This means that they were at this Passover meal as well. Bohdan Piasecki painted this picture to show what the scene probably looked like. He added six women and two children along with Jesus and his male disciples. The men are also wearing prayer shawls.

As we remember the last meal Jesus had with his disciples, let’s not forget how Jesus redefined family. In Luke 8:19-21 says:

Then his mother and his brothers came to him, but they could not reach him because of the crowd. And he was told, ‘Your mother and your brothers are standing outside, wanting to see you.’ But he said to them, ‘My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.’

On this night Jesus gave a new commandment to his new family:

I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another (John 13:34-35).

As we gather with both our biological and spiritual families this season, let us find new ways to show them our love and the love of Christ.

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  3 Responses to “Maundy Thursday: The Family Meal”

  1. interesting picture isn’t it, I appreciate your reflections…

  2. Thank you.

  3. […] (especially people he wasn’t supposed to eat with) a lot. Jesus instituted Communion during the family meal and celebration of Passover. Early Christians gathered together to eat and share their resources with one another. Early in our […]

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