Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Maundy Thursday

Maundy Thursday.

Years ago, when I was assigned to prepare the schedule of activities for the Holy Week celebration in the seminary, I wanted to use the term above. But our venerable catechist, Fr. Bobby Roxas, SDB, asked me what does Maundy mean. I rushed to my then relatively new dictionary, confidently looked for the word, and voila! There was none.

I sheepishly deleted the word "Maundy" and replaced it with the conventional "Holy."

I forgot about that encounter until we had the Socius' hour yesterday. Fr. Wilbert, in his talk about the liturgy of the Holy Maundy Thursday, exposed us to the various nomenclatures of the first day of the Easter Triduum: Holy Thursday, Jueves Santo, Thursday of weeping, and the list went on.

And guess what, the term "Maundy Thursday" is on the list. Beside it is the Latin phrase "novo mandatum," which literally means "new order." Checking with Dictionary.com, I found out that it was taken from "the opening phrase of Jesus' words to the disciples after He had washed their feet."

"A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another." ( John 13:34-35)

I don't wish to talk so much about scriptures. So, enough with the introduction.

As I write this entry, my mind is...in Canlubang.

Yeah, that wonderful place where I spent some five years of my pre-novitiate formation. As of this moment, I am sure that my brother-aspirants are all agog with the preparation for the great Triduum, which officially starts tomorrow.

My heart goes out to them as they busy themselves in preparing for the Easter celebration. I chanced talking with Br. Rusty the other day, and I could not but sense the load of the preparations.

Here in the novitiate, as of this writing, I still yet to feel the burden, but it's okay if it would not come, for I value much this intimate silence taking place within me these days.