The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Maundy Thursday

Some Things I Learned about Lent and Easter

"Let me give you a new command; Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another. This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples — when they see the love you have for each other."


Parties are important to Jesus! Festive meals or parties are a central image in Jesus' ministry. Dan Erlander (retired ELCA pastor) calls them "Manna Events." At the feeding of the 5,000 "all received from God, all shared, all had more than enough, all were satisfied." At the Last Supper there is a "foretaste of the feast to come" (Luke 22:16). Jesus' disciples always arranged festive meals or parties in villages as they entered. It is all about hospitality. We get to experience the hospitality of Jesus and we learn to accept hospitality.

I like communion because I feel joy seeing everyone and sharing a meal. It is like a party. During Lent we remember we have lots to celebrate. [We say in church:] "Christ has come among us, and moments once called common cry out for celebration! Christ now lives among us. Tip the cup. Share the bread. Celebrate his presence." In communion we make a commitment to make our lives like Christ.

We know that we are a part of a remarkable community. Dan Erlander is always writing about what life is all about: friendship with God, with others and with nature. He also likes the word koinonia, which is Greek for fellowship or participation. Christ is here. The party has begun. We are all invited, we are all needed!

Activity: Plan a festive meal.

Question: Has God worked through you? How?

Prayer/mantra: Help me to love as you have loved.


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