Nos autem gloriari oportet in Cruce Domini Nostri Jesu Christi, in quo est salus, vita et resurrectio nostra per quem salvati et liberati sumus.- We should glory in the Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for He is our salvation, our life and our resurrection; through Him we are saved and made free.
Maundy Thursday, (from the latin maundatus-to command) is a marvelous and rich holy day, second only to Holy Saturday in ancient observance in Holy Mother Church. It is the night in which we celebrate the institution of the Most Blessed Sacrament; the first Holy Mass, celebrated in anticipation of the Passion of Our Lord BY Our Lord Himself, in the presence of His apostles, thus teaching them how to worship Almighty God till that glorious and terrible Day of His Appearing on the clouds of glory!
He would not leave this to the chance recollection of men. No, He commanded what His bishops were to do until the end of time. It was in the upper room that He ordained them His first bishops, the first priests of the New Order, that which completes and deepens and expands the Old. ”Lesser rites are ended, newer rites prevail.”
“AND HE BREATHED UPON THEM…” “Thou art a priest forever; according to the order of Melchisedec!” ”Receive ye the power to offer sacrifice unto God and to say Mass.” ”Whose sins ye shall forgive, they are forgiven them; and whose sins thou shalt retain- they are retained.”
This was also the night in which He was betrayed. The night He was imprisoned, something we often forget. He is the Holy Patron of all prisoners. Let us pray for those who are imprisoned, whether justly or unjustly. Let us visit them and help them as we would Our Blessed Lord. This is a corporal work of mercy that is commanded of us, along with feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, and all other good works which we are bound to do, which should flow from our hearts in love as goodness and kindness flow from the Sacred Heart of Jesus to us who have not merited such grace.
Pray for priests today and pray in thanksgiving for all the graces that have come to you and to the world through the hands of the consecrated priest. Pray especially for those traditional priests that are cut off from fellowship because of the worldwide falling away, and who suffer often in loneliness.
“To live in the midst of this world with no desire for its pleasures; to be a member of every family, yet belonging to none; to share all sufferings; to penetrate all secrets and to heal all wounds. To go daily from men to God to offer Him their homage and petitions; to return from God to men to bring them His pardon and hope; to have a heart of fire for charity and a heart of bronze for chastity; to bless and to be blessed forever. O God, what a life this is- and it is yours, O priest of Jesus Christ!”
-Fr. Jean-Baptiste Henri Lacordaire, O.P. 1802-1861