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Today we move to the most sacred of ritual days in the Christian calendar. We call it the Triduum – Latin for three days: Holy Thursday (or Maundy Thursday in Protestant denominations), Good Friday and Holy Saturday – all leading up to the the great celebration of Easter, feast of Christ’s Resurrection. All of it portrays the events leading from the trial to the death and burial of Jesus so why do we call Friday “Good” when his suffering was so intense?

After reading the lectionary texts for today what remains in me is the refrain from a song based on chapter 13 of John’s gospel and the gospel acclamation from the same text. I think that, taken together, those two examples provide the best answer to the above question.

  1. Do you know what I have done to you, you who call me your teacher and your Lord? If I have washed your feet so you must do as I have done for you. (Song of the Lord’s Command by David Haas)
  2. I give you a new commandment, says the Lord: love one another as I have loved you. (JN 13:34)

Let us consider the lengths to which Jesus went to show us the depth of his love. How far are we willing to follow in his footsteps?